Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Disadvantages of Mobile Phones Use - causes Hyperactivity in Children

Disadvantages of Mobile Phones Use - causes Hyperactivity in Children

First, as they say, I have to declare an interest: I hate mobile phones with a passion more normal people reserve for politicians, boy bands and traffic wardens.

Anyway, this one had me smiling like a loon:

A study of more than 13,000 children in Denmark claims to show a link between use of handheld telephones by pregnant women and problems such as hyperactivity in their children. The programme surveyed 13,159 children born in the late 1990s. Results showed that mothers who did use handsets were 54 per cent more likely to have children with behavioural problems. That figure increased to 80 per cent when the children also later used the phones themselves.

This, of course, won’t stop people using mobile phones - and I have to say I’m not convinced this study is very useful. I mean, even if the observations are correct, it doesn’t quite prove a causal link between mobile phone use and hyperactivity in children.

It might just be that life in the West has now become so hectic that children become more hyperactive because of that. Mobile phone use could simply be a part of that. Take away the mobile phones and these children might still become hyperactive.

Be that as it may, it set me thinking. Mostly, what would make people give up their mobile phones? At the moment most people seem to think it’s their unalienable, God-given right to yak on the damn things whenever they want and wherever they are. Take away their mobiles and the rioting may be worse than during any of Europe’s past food riots.

So, if this study would prove to be right - and if, for instance, those other studies about mobile phone use and brain cancer would prove to be true: would that be enough for people to chuck away their mobiles? Somehow, I doubt it.

It makes for a lovely image, doesn’t it? That just to be able to talk drivel like ‘I’m on the train now’ people would risk getting tumours and be happy enough to raise a new generation of hyperactive little monsters. It would make a nice epitaph for humankind though,

“Here lies a species that just couldn’t stop yakking”.

I heard about the disconnect anxiety. More a case of ‘I don’t want to give it up’ than ‘I can’t give it up’ , I would think. If, by some benevolent act of magic, no mobile phone would work any longer in the whole wide world, I’m sure most people would adapt to this quickly and well enough.

People like these obnoxious toys a lot though, so it would be fun to see what they would sacrifice before they voluntarily would give them up: the health & happiness of their children? Their own health - like if it would be shown beyond doubt that using a mobile could be linked to brain tumours the way cigarettes are linked to lung cancer?

None of the negative reports on the consequences of mobile phone use have been very convincing or conclusive yet but it will be interesting to see what happens if mobile phone use would be proven to be seriously bad for you and your loved ones.

Probably not all that much, of course. Look at how many people get killed by cars each year world wide and almost nobody is suggesting it would be better if we all stopped using them,

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