Are Cell Phones Dangerous for Kids?
Kids are using cell phones more and more at younger and younger ages. This brings plenty of new opportunities and conveniences, but also brings new dangers. Not only are children using social media more and venturing deeper into the Internet, but the materials and radiation of cell phones can be physically harmful. Read along to learn how to keep up with the times protect your child from the invisible health hazards of cell phones.
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New Technology, New Concerns
By Lori Calabrese
If you've marveled at your cell phone whiz sending a text in less than five seconds, you've probably also wondered, are cell phones dangerous? Almost a quarter of children ages 6 through 9 have cell phones, which raises concern over their risks—not just privacy concerns and exposure to media, but to their physical health.
In a study completed by HealthyStuff.org and ifixit.org, every cell phone tested contained levels of lead, bromine, chlorine, mercury and cadmium. These substances are known to be hazardous to our health, and some can cause neurological impairment in children, infants and fetuses, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Cell phones are important today, but with the concerns over health issues, how can we help kids get the most out of this technology and sidestep some of the issues?
Put it on Hold
Avoid Enclosed Areas
Keep it Away From the Baby
"Establish no-phone zones—like during class, at the dinner table or after 9 p.m.," says Jim Steyer, author of Talking Back to Facebook and CEO and founder of Common Sense Media. By laying down some rules about when your child is allowed to use her cell phone, you can kill two birds with one stone. She’ll absorb less radiation and avoid an unhealthy dependency on cell phone games, social media and texting.
Keep Phone Away From Body
Use the Landline
Continue to Research
Though the debate over cell phone safety rages on, new studies are continuously released, so be sure to follow the news. Currently, the American Academy of Pediatrics doesn't have an official stance on kids' cell phone use, but continue to visit its site for any updated information that might prove to be useful.