When you call me these days, you may notice that I’m more present. You won’t hear the sound of washing dishes or putting away laundry, won’t catch me checking emails while you pour your heart out, and I sure won’t be up the ladder picking plums with the cordless squeezed between my shoulder and ear. I’ll be sitting on a chair in the main hallway of our house, with nothing better to do than talk to you.
You see, there’s a $120 box of Future Shop wireless phones sitting unopened on our counter. It’ll be returned the next time I screw up my courage to go into that scary Big Box. We’ve gone back to an old-fashioned $3 corded phone from Salvation Army.
While this radical experiment has turned out to be yet another marker in our quest for simplicity, and has yielded the usual unexpected benefits of slowing down and remaining in the moment, the real reason for turning away from wireless was health concerns.
In just my grandma’s lifetime, our species has gone from one with virtually zero electrical exposure to a massive overdose. The average home has wireless internet, phones, remote controls, alarm systems, invisible pet fences, i-tune systems, even Sarah’s computer mouse and keyboard and speakers, that deliberately and constantly send electro-magnetic waves through through our brains and bodies. How many wireless signals can one body transmit?
When I turned to Saint Google for confirmation, every article online said there is no conclusive evidence directly linking this massive new electro-magnetic (ie, radiation) invasion of our bodies with the massive increase in cancer, autism, heart attacks, stress, ADD, SAD, etc etc etc that mark our increasingly sick society.
But we know that our bodies did not evolve to handle the constant wireless pollution all around us. Wireless internet, cell phones, cordless phones, bluetooth, baby monitors, car alarms, it goes on and on. And it goes in and in – into our babies’ growing brains and bodies. Finally I found a source – a nonprofit organization called Wired Child – that confirms (with plenty of links to the scientific data) my fears that the constant presence of radiation from our cordless phone, wireless router, and other wireless devices in our supposedly simple house are ubiquitously and constantly attacking us, with our children being more vulnerable:
Research shows that radiation penetrates more deeply into a child’s head and also that children’s thinner skulls absorb much more radiation than an adult’s.
Another study found that children who had used a mobile phone before they were 20 had five times more chance of getting a brain tumor later in life. That five times greater risk might be the tip of the iceberg because there is every chance the risks increase the longer the phone is used. The increase in risk could turn out to be much greater when the full long-term effects have been studied in the future. Additionally we do not yet know how significant the impact of exposure to other new radiation sources, like cordless phones, wi-fi, Bluetooth, baby listening monitors and games consoles, will be or how the different sources interact in their effect on children’s bodies. These now ubiquitous products add to the radiation “load” experienced by children growing up today but the effects of long-term exposure to them are untested Many scientists fear for the impact this will have when today’s children grow up. (www.wiredchild.org)
When we first made our decision to stop using cordless phones, it was based on a gut feeling. Now it appears there was some wisdom and science behind that feeling. Most studies to date have been about mobile phones, but cordless phones operate on much the same technology:
Modern cordless phones work much like mobile phones. When in use, their power level, and microwave radiation emissions, are within the range at which mobile phones commonly operate, although they don’t power up to the maximum level of a mobile phone. Cordless phones tend to be used for much longer calls than those on mobiles because they are often the main phone on a household’s land-line. This means that the health effects might be even more significant than from mobile phones. A recent study found a link between malignant brain tumours and using cordless phones.
There is an additional exposure from a cordless phone system because it includes a base station which emits radiation as it “communicates” with the phone and this works rather like a mobile phone mast. There is now substantial evidence of health effects associated with exposures from mobile phone masts. The phone and base unit emit radiation continuously, so there is an extra exposure “whammy” of radiation 24/7 even when the phone is not in use. The radiation emitted from the base unit and phone on standby are much lower than from the phone on a call but some scientists think this chronic (long-term) exposure may be even more damaging than short bursts of higher level radiation, like that from mobile and cordless phones in use on a call
Telus and Rogers both come next week to put in new phone and internet jacks in 3 different rooms in our house so that we can completely do away with the cordless phone and wifi. The cost – about $150; the inconvenience – minimal; long-term benefits – priceless.