Is “Digital Dementia” in Your Child’s Future?
Word has it that the late Apple guru, Steve Jobs, did not allow his kids to spend too much time with their digital gadgets.
Several recent articles including a piece in the New York Times entitled Steve Jobs Was A Low-Tech Parent have shed light on this little known fact about Jobs and what went on in his home.
“We limit how much technology our kids use at home,” Jobs was quoted as saying in the New York Times article.
Jobs was not the only technology expert who restricted tech use for his kids.
Former Wired Magazine Editor Chris Anderson told New York Times writer Nick Bilton:
“My kids accuse me and my wife of being fascists. They say that none of their friends have the same rules. That’s because we have seen the dangers of technology first hand. I’ve seen it in myself, I don’t want to see that happen to my kids.”
Hold the Phones
It would appear that Jobs and other tech experts were on to something. Many of today’s parents are unaware of the dark side of technology and its growing detrimental effects on the development and learning ability of children.
Interestingly enough, many countries around the world including France and Russia are also imposing tech restrictions on the younger generation. They have either forbid cell phone use for children and teens under age 18 or forbid the marketing of cell phones to children.
As the author of Zapped: Why Your Cell Phone Shouldn’t Be Your Alarm Clock and 1,268 Ways to Outsmart the Hazards of Electronic Pollution, I wrote about the impact of non-ionizing radiation on a child’s thinner skull and developing brain.
Children are more vulnerable because their skulls and bones allow them to absorb twice the amount of radiation as a grown-up.
Electromagnetic fields from technological gadgets can more deeply penetrate the brain tissue which is more conductive than an adult because it contains a higher concentration of fluid and ions.
Wireless radiation has cumulative negative biological implications on children.
Abnormal changes in cellular membranes, DNA and chromosome aberrations and leaks in the blood brain barrier have all been well noted by independent researchers like Dr. Andrew Goldsworthy, a pioneer in electrosensitivity and Dr. Martin Blank, author of Overpowered: The Dangers of Electromagnetic Radiation (EMF) and What You Can Do About It.
The Dark Side of Technology for Kids
More and more researchers and professional organizations like the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Canadian Society of Pediatrics are calling for restricted use of technology for children and youth.
They explicitly state that children 0-2 years of age should have no exposure to any type of technology, while those 3-5 can be exposed to one hour per day, and 6-18 years old should be restricted to a mere two hours per day.
An enlightening new website—zonein.ca—created by pediatric occupational therapist Cris Rowan covers the disastrous implications of blanketing our children in wireless fields created by electropollution—the hidden, invisible threat that is especially insidious because you can’t see it or smell it to warn you that there may be some kind of harm.
The site presents a plethora of information documenting the mental, emotional as well as physical health changes of children who are overexposed to cell phones, tablets, and electronic games.
It is the best I’ve come across in the marketplace on the EMF impact on children from a variety of perspectives.
The stunning new condition “Digital Dementia” has been connected to children who have been overusing technology and experience memory loss, distraction, and inability to concentrate.
Equally troubling, is that the number of children now diagnosed with autism seems to be doubling every five years.
This epidemic is exploding exponentially and the only element that parallels this growth is the exposure that children have to electropollution in the form of cell phones, iPads, and tablets and the enormous range of wireless devices now in homes and schools today including smart meters, WiFi, appliances and portable phones.
Digital Dementia Deterrents
- Keep kids from carrying their cell phones on their person – keep in a backpack or purse.
- Replace wireless router with a hard-wired router.
- Choose hardwire connections at home for linking to the internet and linking computer and printer.
- Replace cordless phones in your home with corded phones. Having a cordless phone emits more radiation than a cell phone, and acts as a mini tower!
- Curb kids’ cell phone use during the day. Carry the phones in shielded cases.
- Unplug all electrical devices like blankets, bed pads or water bed heaters before bed.
- In the bedroom, put all smartphones and tablets on airplane mode and power down computers and disable wireless routers while sleeping. Keep in mind that light in any of these devices can disrupt melatonin production so critical to deep, uninterrupted sleep. Dim the brightness setting and hold the device at least 15 inches from the face.
Reclaim your children’s bodies and brains by implementing Earthing products to “ground” the body.
Within 20 -30 minutes, the Earthing/grounding phenomenon creates a stable biochemical environment by preventing external electronic fields from interfering with natural biochemical and bioelectrical functions. This is the equivalent of going barefoot outdoors on the grass, sand, or ground.
At your child’s desk or workspace use Earthing Mats to protect against the electromagnetic pollution emitted from computers, telephones and electronic equipment.
These Earthing products enable the body to reconnect with the earth’s electrons to neutralize free radicals and prevent inflammation, pain, elevated cortisol and neurological dysfunction.
Here’s what one single mom, Donna Z, from Colorado Springs, reported in the latest edition of Earthing:
“My twelve-year-old son is experiencing deeper sleep, more vivid dreams, and a much better sense of wellbeing and calmness. He has dyslexia…..focus issues, bad gut, and wheat/gluten intolerance but since we’ve been grounding we have seen school grades, moods, coping skills, and reaction to food greatly improved…..This is a profound benefit. Another mom we know whose son has autistic-type issues has noticed improvements since starting Earthing well.”
Protecting Our Future…
Sensitivity to electromagnetic radiation is the Number One emerging health issue of the 21st century. It is of the utmost urgency that we learn more about it and recognize the diverse symptoms.
Diminished learning, diminished cognition, reaction time and memory accuracy have all been noted in the nervous system of humans following exposure to everyday technology.
Let me conclude by reiterating the mission statement of Cris Rowan’s zonein.ca which I find frighteningly compelling:
Children are the future of our planet. Through modern technology, we have unconsciously created a virtual reality that children call “home”, a reality devoid of connection and human interaction. TV, video games, internet and cell phones are now the teachers of our children, not schools and parents. The result has been an alarming increase in physical, mental, social and academic impairments.
Now is the time to plant the seed for children to learn in a new and conscious way. Teaching children to bring awareness to themselves, so they know who they are, creates a strong healthy foundation for learning. Using their energy in positive productive ways, children learn to create balance and wholeness of body, mind and spirit.
Children are our future, and there is no future in virtual reality.
10 Reasons Why Handheld Devices Should be Banned for Children Under the Age of 12 by Cris Rowan (Huffington Post)
Zapped: Why Your Cell Phone Shouldn’t Be Your Alarm Clock and 1,268 Ways to Outsmart the Hazards of Electronic Pollution by Ann Louise Gittleman (HarperOne, 2010)
Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever! (2nd Edition) by Clint Ober, Stephen Sinatra and Marty Zucker (Basic Health Publications, 2014)