Back to School
School Days Dominated by Wireless Tech
The Summer holidays are over and Australian children are heading back to school. In many cases – particularly for students in high school – this means their days will be dominated by wireless technology. Most high schools around the country have adopted a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy which means that students bring their own laptop to use in the classroom and very often the laptop is also used at home to complete homework. Add to this the fact that many children will own a mobile phone by the time they start high school and there is very little time during the school day when children are without a wireless device, especially if they indulge in a little extra screen time at the end of the day. Even primary school-aged children are increasingly using iPads for learning in the classroom and are often assigned screen-based homework.
Increased Exposure to Electromagnetic Radiation
This continuous use of wireless devices means continuous exposure to electromagnetic radiation (EMR) emitted from the devices. Hundreds of peer-reviewed studies have shown a wide range of adverse health effects from EMR. In addition, studies have shown that prolonged exposure to the artificial blue light emitted from screens can have detrimental effects on eye health, leading to digital eye strain, disruption to natural circadian rhythms, sleep problems and an increased risk of macular degeneration – the leading cause of blindness in industrial nations.
Safe Tech Habits
By adopting some simple safe tech habits you can significantly reduce your family's exposure to EMR and start the 2020 school year off the right way. Here are some of our top tips:
1. Keep your distance
Distance is your friend when it comes to EMR as it has a rapid decay rate and your exposure is reduced the further away you are from the source of the EMR. Keep your mobile phone away from your head and don't carry it in a pocket close to your body. Move your WiFi router out of your living and work spaces.
2. Text instead of talk
Reduce exposure to your head from your mobile phone by texting instead of talking. When you do need to talk, use the speaker function or an AirTube headset to keep the phone away from your head.
3. Use Airplane Mode
When you switch a device onto Airplane Mode it stops sending a signal to the nearest WiFi router or cell tower thus reducing the amount of EMR emitted from the device to almost zero. Make it a habit to switch phones and other devices to Airplane Mode when you're not using them or when internet connectivity is not required. Be sure to check that the WiFi function on your device is also switched off.
4. Make bedrooms a tech-free zone
Remove all devices from bedrooms. Aside from being woken up by notifications on your phone which will lead to disturbed sleep, you are exposed to EMR right throughout the night. Studies have shown EMR to affect melatonin production and quality of sleep. If removing your phone from your bedroom isn't an option or if you use your phone as your alarm clock, then ensure it is switched to Airplane Mode and the WiFi setting is turned off throughout the night.
5. Download, don't stream
When watching videos or playing games on devices, download them first away from you and your children and then play or watch when they are completely downloaded. You can switch the device onto Airplane Mode and enjoy safely. This is a great tip for car journeys with kids!
6. Turn your WiFi off at night
One of the easiest ways to reduce EMR exposure for the whole family is to switch your WiFi router off during the night. Simply use a timer to switch off the power source when you're ready to retire for the evening and to come back on again in the morning. This safeguards your precious sleep time when the body needs to rest, recover and rejuvenate for the next day.
7. Avoid looking at screens at least an hour before bedtime
To protect eye health and ensure a proper night's sleep, it is advised to avoid looking at screens – be it TV, phones or laptops – at least an hour before you go to sleep. Artificial blue light from screens mimics sunlight and tricks our brain into thinking it is still daytime, thus suppressing melatonin production which we need to fall asleep. Use of screens late at night is thought to be a key factor in the epidemic of poor sleep among children and young adults at a time in their life when a quality night's sleep is crucial.
8. Limit screen time
Easier said than done we know but teaching kids healthy tech habits from an early age is really important. Our children will be the first generation to have lifelong exposure to electromagnetic radiation and they are much more susceptible to the exposure effects. Limit their daily usage by setting screen time limits in the Settings function of their devices and teach them how and when to use the Airplane Mode. Most importantly, explain why having safe tech habits is so important for their physical and mental health and well-being.
9. Replace wireless with wired
Where possible, use a wired instead of a wireless connection. Your home computer is a good place to start. Connect your computer via an ethernet cable and ensure your mouse and printer are wired. It is possible to connect your tablet and laptop with an ethernet cable also.
10. Adopt the 20/20/20 rule when looking at screens
To help combat digital eye-strain from looking at screens, ensure that for every 20 minutes of screen-time you look at something 20 feet (6 metres) away for at least 20 seconds.
For more tips and information, check out our Reducing Exposure page.
Extra EMR Protection
In addition to adopting safe tech habits, we have a collection of fabulous products that help to reduce exposure to EMR emitted from wireless tech to help protect your family.
Help to protect them from harmful EMR from their mobile phone by using a SafeSleeve case. SafeSleeve Cases include a shielding material in the front flap of the case to protect the head, ear and brain from electromagnetic radiation when holding the phone up to take a call. The case also shields the body from EMR when the phone is carried around in a pocket. SafeSleeve cases are tested in an FCC-certified laboratory to show a reduction of up to 99% of all three types of radiation emitted from a mobile phone. The cases are sleek, stylish and practical and, in addition to protecting the user, SafeSleeve cases protect the phone itself from breaks, spills and scratches. SafeSleeve cases are available in a range of colours and sizes to fit most popular phone makes and models. The cases are also available in a new slimline style. Check out why we love SafeSleeve phone cases here.
We understand, however, that some kids either refuse to use a flip case or have already chosen a standard case that they love. In this instance, we recommend using a Bodywell Chip on their mobile phone, which can reduce radiation by up to 80%. The Bodywell Chip is small, slimline and discretely sticks directly on to the back of a mobile phone and absorbs the radiation emitted by the phone. It can be used with any phone, tablet or laptop and can be placed underneath any case. It is a great combination for extra protection with a SafeSleeve case. Find out more about the Bodywell Chip and view the lab testing here.
Whether listening to music on the bus, or using them to make phone calls, many kids use some form of headset with their mobile phone. Most phones come with a set of standard wired earphones or ear buds and radiation travels up the copper wire inside the earphones and directly into their ear. EMF experts suggest swapping a pair of wired headphones for an AirTube headset in which the sound travels up a hollow tube. AirTube headsets come with a standard 3.5mm jack so a lightning adaptor may be required for newer models of iPhones.
For those who already own a pair of beloved headphones and refuse to give them up, there is a solution! The new Cool Call connects to a standard pair of wired headphones and absorbs and reduces the radiation which travels from the mobile phone up the wire of the headset. Simply plug one end of the Cool Call unit into the headphone jack of the mobile phone and your headphones into the other end of the Cool Call. Lightning adaptors may be required for newer iPhone models.
To help reduce EMR exposure from laptops which will be used throughout the day, we recommend a SafeSleeve lap desk. Slim, lightweight and constructed from high-quality materials, the lap desk blocks over 99% of RF radiation and 92% of ELF (Extremely Low Frequency) radiation and comes with a built-in secure storage pouch. The lap desk will easily slip into a school bag to be used in the classroom and at home.
SafeSleeve also have a range of radiation protection carry cases which can convert into a workstation with built-in mousepad. Check out the range of SafeSleeve cases here.
Blue light glasses
Our stylish collection of blue light filtering glasses from Baxter Blue are the ideal solution to reduce blue light exposure from screens by 50%. With virtually clear lenses, the Baxter Blue glasses look like a regular pair of glasses and can be worn all day long. Alleviate digital eye strain, headaches and fatigue from staring at screens and protect your sleep and eye health. Our blue light glasses are available in a range of colours and styles to suit most tastes. Available in both adult and children sizes.
All-round EMF Protection
The Blushield Tesla Gold range offers all-round EMF protection at home, at work or on-the-go. Blushield doesn't block or shield EMR, but rather it emits its own natural frequency that our body responds to and protects the body at a cellular level from man-made electromagnetic frequencies emitted by wireless devices, electrical appliances and all forms of EMF. Discover more about Blushield here.