Cell phones are not designed to be close to our bodies. Sounds strange, doesn’t it? When do we ever not have our cell phones close to us? We press them against our ear when we talk, we hold them in our hands when we text or scroll through social media – heck, even when they’re in our pockets, they’re still pressed against us! So, what’s the radiation doing to us while we are so close to our phones?
Male and female fertility has been looked into more and more over the years. Although it’s hard to see or feel the effects of cell phone radiation on us immediately, studies have been showing more and more that internally, we are definitely reacting to this exposure.
Did you know that if you talk on your phone for more than an hour a day, your sperm is proven to be less effective?
That’s right: men who talk on their phone for more than an hour a day are twice as likely to have an abnormal sperm concentration as men who do not. Patients who took part in another study were seen to have a 42% lower sperm count and 33% lower sperm motility (how well sperm ‘swims’) if they used their phone for more than four hours a day. Low sperm motility and abnormal sperm counts and are often indicative of other underlying health problems or risk factors, so it’s a big deal that it can also be directly affected by the use of your cell phone. Professor of Medicine Stanton Glantz even notes that the evidence linking cell phone radiation to sperm damage is causal, meaning that there is a direct link that cannot be ignored. Experts discussing his studies agree that while there is still uncertainty around a number of studies in this field, there is not much to debate on that front – the evidence is overwhelming.
Aside from that, reduced male fertility is steadily rising, with 1 in 20 males now facing this as a problem. There are a lot of contributing factors, but cell phone exposure is now becoming recognised as a firm contender. In fact, the evidence is so overwhelming that the Indian government has issued warning to clinics that deal with reproduction to routinely advise young men to keep their cell phones out of their pockets.
It doesn’t stop with us, though.
Scientists exposed middle-aged lab rats to cell phone radiation for 2 hours a day, 25 days in a row. Along with lower testosterone, increased enzymes tied with DNA damage and overall lower fertility, the offspring of the test subjects showed diminished male reproductive capacity. This means that instead of just affecting human males, there is a high possibility that cell phone radiation can also affect their male children as well.
Put simply, exposure to cell phone radiation increases your risk of infertility, as well as that of your children.
Planning to get pregnant is an exciting thing! There are often a lot of things you will plan to avoid or do more of in order to get the best results. However, with 1 in 6 couples now experiencing fertility issues, experts are becoming more and more aware of the link between these problems and the use of cell phones.
Studies show that long term exposure to your cell phone causes what is known as ‘oxidative and nitrosative stress’. This is caused because in reaction to the radiation, you experience a significant increase in things like lipid peroxidation (which causes cell damage), and a significant decrease in antioxidant enzymes (which fights against cell damage) in your ovaries and uterus. This decreases your ability to reproduce.
Unfortunately, researchers have also found that exposure to cell phone radiation can induce endometriosis and inflammation, which are known causes of infertility. It is estimated that up to 50% of women who are infertile have endometriosis, and around half of all women with endometriosis are infertile.
Like men, it doesn’t just stop with us.
When women are exposed to radiation from cell phones, studies have shown that the damage to their eggs is passed on to their female babies. Females are born with all the eggs they will ever need. This means that their fertility later in life will be affected as well. Experts have warned that if we are not careful, females may be completely sterile in five generations.
The bottom line
Infertility is becoming an increasing problem in many societies. Cell phone use is unequivocally a strong contender as a cause, as found by many experts.
In males, sperm count and ability to ‘swim’ is adversely affected. In females, cell damage causes reduced ability to reproduce and there is an increased risk of other health problems that cause infertility.
A lot of people are under the impression that just because cell phones are not illegal, they are safe to use. We need to make ourselves and those around us aware of the risks involved. This is so we can reduce our exposure and create healthier habits around any necessary cell phone use, protecting ourselves and future generations.
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