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Is your child's cell phone hurting their brain?

What effect are mobile phones having on your adolescent's brain?

A new British study just announced today will investigate whether the use of wireless technologies might affect children’s cognitive development. To date, scientist say they remain uncertain as to whether children’s developing brains are "more vulnerable than adults’ brains, due to their developing nervous system, enhanced absorption of energy in head tissue, and increased cumulative exposure over their lifetime."

The independent three year study led by researchers from Imperial College London starts in September and is the largest of its kind. Named the Study of Cognition, Adolescents and Mobile Phones (SCAMP), scientists plan to measure memory and attention in approximately 2500 students from more than 160 secondary schools in the London area starting at ages 11 to 12 years old.

According to researchers in the UK, 70 percent of 11 to 12 year olds and 90 percent of 14 year olds own a mobile phone. Professor Paul Elliott, Director of the MRC-PHE Centre for Environment and Health at Imperial College London, and co-investigator of the study, says “Scientific evidence available to date is reassuring and shows no association between exposure to radio frequency waves from mobile phone use and brain cancer in adults in the short term (less than 10 years of use). But the evidence available regarding long term heavy use and children’s use is limited and less clear.” Researchers say only two European studies have focused on childhood cancers and mobile phone use. One reported no association and the other is ongoing.

For more information on health and cell phones:

National Institutes of Health

World Health Organization

US Food and Drug Administration

Kaiser Family Foundation


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