Children are more vulnerable due to multiple factors:1 It is noteworthy that brain tumours have overtaken leukaemia as a leading cause of cancer death in young people.
1. Children absorb more radiation:
- The brain of a child (age 5-8yrs) can absorb 2x the radiation of an adult.2
- Exposure in bone marrow can be up to 10x greater than an adult.3
2. Outcomes in children may be worse as:
- Children have systems which are still developing.
- Children have a longer time ahead for latent effects to manifest.
There is inconsistent advice regarding radiation exposure for children in the UK. The Chief Medical Officers state that:
“children and young people under 16 should be encouraged to use mobile phones for essential purposes only”4. This advice is also underpinned by a medical doctors’ appeal 5 (signed by more than 1,000 physicians) stating “Children below the age of 8 should not use cell phones and cordless phones; children and adolescents between the ages 8 and 16 should also not use cell phones or only use them in the case of an emergency”. However, this advice was never effectively communicated to the public and children are still encouraged to use RFR emitting tablets, computers and numerous other wireless devices (including sometimes mobile phones) in school. The same caution should apply for tablets and other similar RFR sources as their maximum Specific Absorption Rates (SARs) are comparable and in some cases higher. Additionally, these devices are often held near to sensitive areas such as the reproductive organs. Wi-fi shares the same carcinogenic status as other forms of RFR under the IARC classification and is also “an important threat to human health” in numerous ways, additional to its carcinogenicity.6 Hard wired alternatives should clearly be implemented in schools.