Telecommunications companies around the world are in a race in launching a faster Internet service and better connectivity through 5G technology. As a matter of fact, Fortune reported that the 5G is expected to be at least 10 to 100 times faster than the existing 4G service. With this bandwidth, 5G can connect and support 100 billion wireless devices and deliver ultra-fast download speed of up to 10 GB per second.
While many tech users and experts are looking forward to the looming 5G rollout, not everyone is thrilled and enthusiastic about it, especially with the health risks that are said to be associated with the service.
What’s “wrong” with 5G?
5G will tap the millimeter wave (MMW), which is around 30 GHz to 300 GHz in bandwidth. The problem with MMWs is that these are prone to interferences, such as buildings, plants, and even the rain. In addition, these waves cannot travel far due to their short wavelengths. As a result, telecommunications companies would need to install thousands of short distance, mini cell towers to support and reinforce the 5G technology.
According to CBS News, wireless companies in the United States are looking to mount at least 300,000 antennas, which are equivalent to the total number of towers that are put up in the last 30 years. This would mean that wireless antennas would be seen everywhere – from lamp posts to utility poles, and even in nearly every space in your neighborhood and business complexes, thus increasing our exposure to the harmful radiofrequency radiation.
While previous studies have shown correlations of absorption of radio frequency energies from the 4G network with tumor growth and cancer in rats, the potential health risks of the 5G service have not yet been fully established. “5G’s millimeter-waves were never tested for human health hazard and there is only a very limited number of studies on its biological effects. In practice, we do not know what the health effects of long-term and close proximity exposures might be,” said Professor Dariusz Leszczynski, one of the leading researchers on the effects of RF radiation. Having said that, there are several studies that link MMWs with skin diseases, and the bandwidth that will be used by the 5G network with retinal differentiation, arrhythmias, and effect on the immune system.
For instance, Dr. Yael Stein from the Hebrew University investigated the absorption of the MMWs by the skin. He found out that the skin’s sweat ducts are conductive receptors to MMWs, causing the MMWs to be readily absorbed by the skin. This can lead to physical pain and possibilities of cancer.
A study conducted by the Medical Research Institute of Kanazawa Medical University revealed that a 60 GHz bandwidth, which is the same as the 5G technology, can penetrate below the surface of the eye. This was proved by research from the College of Physicians and Surgeons in Pakistan, which showed that EMFs caused retinal differentiation in chicken embryos.
How can you protect yourself?
While years of research and millions of funding are needed to clearly establish the effects of 5G service in humans, there are various ways on how you can curb the harmful effects of RF radiation, may it be from 4G or 5G service.
One can minimize the exposure to RF radiation by limiting the time on your phone and by using cases and sleeves that block such radiation. SafeSleeve offers anti-radiation cases for your wireless devices.