The advent of modern technology has facilitated mankind in various shapes of which one is connecting people sitting far from each other through telecommunication systems. Over the past ten to fifteen years the use of cellular phones has increased exponentially touching the numeric value of 7.4 billion. A more comprehensive interpretation revealed that out of 100, 97 people have cell phones. But ease always comes at a cost, the mobile phones use electromagnetic radiation which people are directly exposed to. These mobile phone radiations have many adverse effect on our health. Research has been conducted both by world health organization and individual institutions to explore how lethal these electromagnetic waves are for causing diseases like cancer and brain tumors and also for separating myths from facts.
Before going into detailed discussion on health risks, it must first be mentioned what are electromagnetic or radio frequency waves which are the primary means of distant communication. These are the waves which can pass through vacuum without needing any physical media. Basic anatomy of these waves comprises of electric and magnetic fields which progress by the phenomena of regeneration. Depending upon their nature and impact on materials prone to these rays, there are two major classifications, one is ionizing waves and second is non ionizing. Ionizing waves include gamma rays (produced by nuclear fission) and X-rays (used in diagnosis of diseases). The type of waves used in mobile phones are non ionizing type and fall in the low frequency region of spectrum. These are specifically known as microwaves.
There are two major sources of exposure to electromagnetic waves, the cell phone and the base station also known as signal boosters. According to the International Agency for research on cancer(IARC) the mobile phone radiations are classified in Group 2B, which means these are considered possibly carcinogenic, or in other words a more thorough research on people exhibiting excessive use of mobile phones must be conducted to prove the carcinogenicity of these waves. Until now no research can prove a direct relation between the development of brain tumors and use of mobile phone. It is a known fact that when exposed to radiation, tissue of a living organism absorb certain amount of that radiation and this parameter is known as Specific Absorption Rate (SAR). This parameter is used in determining the tumor formation due to these rays and its upper threshold limit is set by the governmental authorities in each country. A usually cited value ranges from 1 to 1.5 watts/Kg. Exceeding these limits may increase the vulnerability to different kinds of disorders in human body.
Another known fact about electromagnetic waves is that these radiations induce rotations of polar molecules in the insulating or dielectric materials. As our skin is one of this type, these rotations cause a temperature increase of outer skin. A close study has overruled the myths about an excessive increase of head temperature by listening to a phone call as it is only a fraction of degree to which head temperature rises, even this value is less than that caused by a direct subjection to sunlight. The natural mechanism of our brain normalizes its temperature by changing the rate of blood circulation through veins thus nullifying the thermal health risk of radiation. Previously headaches were correlated primarily to usage of cell phones, now it is considered just a myth as no evidence of this claim is found during experimentation.
Scientists have reported some other health risks including change sin brain activity, disturbing sleeping patterns etc but these effects are not highly significant in magnitude to be considered. However using cell phones while driving is strictly prohibited because studies have proven that human brain attention reduces to a remarkable limit and can cause vehicle crash. The microwaves also interfere with the electronic equipment due to a phenomena known as electromagnetic interference which can cause medical equipment to malfunction.
In the end we can draw a logical conclusion that cell phone radiations can create certain biological disorders such as temperature change and sleeping problems, however no drastic health effect can be termed as being caused by mobile radiations falsifying the myth that it creates brain tumors. As a suggestion, it is mentioned by the medical doctors to restrict the cell phone usage as much as possible.