People living near telecommunication towers are at a higher risk of getting cancer, recent studies reveal.
A report in Germany found that cancer rates more than tripled among people living within 400 metres of mobile phone towers or antennae. It gets worse for those within 100 meters with the study revealing they were exposed to radiation at 100 times normal levels.
With more than one billion mobile phone subscribers and around 130,000 mobile phone towers worldwide, the chances of getting cancer are immense.
The power levels of these towers are relatively low, the antennas are mounted high above ground level, and the signals are transmitted intermittently, rather than constantly.
Mobile phones connect with nearby mobile towers mainly through radio frequency (RF) waves which, like FM radio, are forms of non-ionising radiation which means they do not directly damage the DNA cells.
The human body, which consists of 70 per cent fluid, absorbs electromagnetic radiation.
Besides cancer,people living near mobile phone base stations are at risk of headaches, memory loss, nausea, dizziness, tremors, muscle spasms, numbness, tingling, altered reflexes, muscle and joint paint, leg/foot pain, depression, and sleep disturbance. More severe reactions include seizures, paralysis, psychosis and stroke.
Mobile phone radiation
On the other hand, recent studies also confirm that mobile phone radiation can drastically affect male fertility.
In 2006, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine reported that use of mobile phones by men is associated with a decrease in semen quality, sperm count, motility, viability and normal morphology.
Studies have found a 30 per cent sperm decline in those who use a mobile phone excessively.
Electromagnetic fields have been shown to affect the brain which explains why people who use mobile phones before bed are prone to suffer from headaches, confusion and depression.
Use of mobile phones for more than 10 years increases the risk of brain cancer. The risk is highest for the side of the head where the mobile phone is held.
Children and teenagers are five times more likely to get brain cancer. It is possible that today’s young people may suffer an “epidemic” of the disease in later life.
Non-thermal effects of radio frequency radiation accumulate over time and the risks are more pronounced after several years of exposure.