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Wi-Fi waves could be dangerous to your baby bump

A new campaign aims to boost awareness about the potential dangers of Wi-Fi exposure in pregnant women.

Pregnant woman with tablet computer

Photo credit: onebluelight/E+/Getty Images

Better safe than sorry. That’s the message from the Environmental Health Trust and Grassroots Environmental Education. Their BabySafe campaign aims to educate caregivers and parents on how to lower fetal exposure to Wi-Fi waves.

What’s the harm in using your baby bump to prop up your tablet while taking in more Orange is the New Black? Scientists just aren’t sure, so they’re urging people to protect children from wireless radiation.

“More research is needed to determine exactly how the developing brain is affected, but in the meantime, we certainly have enough evidence of potential harm to recommend taking simple, common-sense precautions,” said Patricia Wood, a visiting scholar at Adelphi University and the executive director of Grassroots Environmental Education.

“There’s essentially no downside to being cautious and protecting your baby,” said Hugh Taylor, M.D., who heads up Yale University School of Medicine’s department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences. He recently studied the behavioral changes in offspring of mice that were exposed to wireless radiation while pregnant.

“We have demonstrated clear cause-and-effect relationships in mice, and we already have studies showing that women who use cell phones have children with more behavioral problems,” he said.

10 Tips to limit Wi-Fi exposure

The BabySafe Project is promoting 10 tips for women to limit their exposure to Wi-Fi.

  1. Avoid carrying your cell phone on your body (e.g., in a pocket or bra).
  2. Avoid holding any wireless device against your body when in use.
  3. Use your cell phone on speaker setting or with an “air tube” headset.
  4. Avoid using your wireless device in cars, trains or elevators.
  5. Avoid cordless phones, especially where you sleep.
  6. Whenever possible, connect to the internet with wired cables.
  7. When using Wi-Fi, connect only to download, then disconnect and disable Wi-Fi.
  8. Avoid prolonged or direct exposure to nearby Wi-Fi routers.
  9. Unplug your home Wi-Fi router when not in use (e.g., at bedtime).
  10. Sleep as far away from wireless utility meters (i.e., “smart” meters) as possible.

“Pregnant women deserve to know that wireless radiation can have an impact on the developing brain,” said Maya Shetreat-Klein, M.D., a pediatric neurologist practicing in New York. “We’re seeing alarming increases in the number of children diagnosed with neurological disorders over the past decade, and anything we can do that might help reduce that rate should be taken very seriously.”

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