We are trying to thrive in an era of Artificial Intelligence. Our homes, institutions, work spaces are dependent on technology for seamless functioning. Mobile phones are a necessary medium of not only communication but banking, transactions, shopping, job search, doctor appointments, cab service and more. The use of electronic gadgets like a cellular phone or laptop is inevitable today.
Although, we cannot avoid the usage of electronic gadgets being informed of the radiation from these devices on children and pregnant women are necessary.
Radiation hazards in pregnancy
According to health experts, the radio frequency electromagnetic radiation (RF-EMR) emitted by cellular phones can enhance the excitability of the brain and is recognized to be carcinogenic. As most women tend to take it easy during pregnancy and taking naps or resting is obvious. Being in close proximity of mobile phones, laptops should be of limited use. The radio waves emitted from these gadgets may alter the DNA structure of growing fetus and unlikely mutations are possible.
With increasing incidences of babies born with Asperger’s syndrome, ADHD or cognitive disabilities, experts correlate these concerns with frequent exposure to WiFi and electronic gadgets radiation during pregnancy.
A study published in April 2017, ‘Maternal Cell Phone Use During Pregnancy and Child Behavioral Problems in Five Birth Cohorts’ concludes that ‘maternal cell phone use during pregnancy may be associated with an increased risk for behavioral problems, particularly hyperactivity/attention problems, in the offspring’.
Although the radiation emitted by phones, desktops, laptops or tablets is low-energy, frequent and long-lasting exposure to these devices can cause severe health issues in pregnant women and their developing babies.
Prevention from radiation during pregnancy
Medical experts recommend that working on laptop or usage of gadgets can be necessary but pregnant women should increase the distance between self and the source of radiation by avoiding keeping the electrical devices directly near your body.
Moreover, airplane mode in the phone is effective during naps and keep the phone away from the bed. The effective utilization of electronic gadgets involves limiting laptop and computer usage to less than four hours at a stretch. Avoid cooking or reheating food in a microwave. A suggestive remedy is to choose fabrics (clothes, blankets) that have the ability to reflect or absorb electromagnetic fields (e.g. ARD Technology).
A baby growing in the womb needs good nutrition, along with great maternal health and along with the exclusion of alcohol, nicotine, un-prescribed medications; electronic gadgets utility should be regulated. Walks in fresh air and reading textbooks are more holistic approaches to relaxing during pregnancy and keeping both mother and baby healthy.
Think twice before using mobile phones for prolonged periods during pregnancy. It is advisable to reduce their usage to ensure yours and your child’s well being. Becoming a mother is a beautiful journey and an unforgettable experience.
- Take breaks at using mobiles
- Keep gadgets at a distance
- Keep yourself away from electromagnetic fields
Dr. Nupur Gupta,
Gynecologist & Director
Well Woman Clinic, Gurguram