Do you need to be concerned about laptop radiation? Let me ask you this: do you sit with your laptop resting on your lap? If you answered yes, then you have reason to be concerned.
Laptop computers fit right in with the modern on-the-go, work-anywhere lifestyle–but they come at a cost. Taking your work with you is both a blessing and a curse, but with the case of laptops and other electronic devices, you’re not only taking your work with you–you’re also taking a dose of laptop radiation.
What is Laptop Radiation?
Using a laptop exposes you to Electromagnetic Fields (or EMFs)–basically radio waves that emanate from electronic devices and create a magnetic field. This is what I’m talking about when I refer to “laptop radiation” throughout this post.
Did You Know Laptop Radiation Can “Burn” Your Skin?
If you’ve ever sat with a laptop on your knees, you know that your laptop can produce a lot of heat–and the longer you use it, the hotter it gets. The heat can get uncomfortable, but most people don’t realize the heat radiating from your laptop can actually damage your skin:
Balancing your laptop on your knees could cause permanent discolouration of the skin and, in rare cases, cancer, doctors have warned.
The heat generated by the computers can cause a nettle sting-like rash – a condition named ‘toasted skin syndrome’. – from Dailymail.co.uk
Researchers say the skin discoloration can be permanent, and in rare cases it can cause damage leading to certain skin cancers.
They also warn that “children’s skin is particularly susceptible to heat” –so you definitely have reason to be concerned if your kids are using a laptop for homework or gaming.
Laptop Radiation and Infertility in Men
A study in 2011 caused some buzz when researchers discovered that Wi-Fi radiation from laptops damaged sperm in a laboratory experiment:
For the study – published in the journal Fertility and Sterility – researchers in Argentina obtained semen from 29 healthy men and measured sperm cells’ swimming ability after being exposed to wi-fi radiation from an Internet-connected laptop.
After four hours of exposure, one-quarter of the sperm were no longer swimming, Reuters reported. In comparison, 14 percent of sperm cells that had been kept at the same temperature but not exposed to wi-fi were no longer swimming. What’s more, DNA damage was more common in the wi-fi sperm than in the “control” sperm. – from CBSnews.com
Let’s get those numbers straight: 25% of “Wi-Fi” sperm stopped swimming vs. 14% in the control group. That’s a huge difference!
Blocking the heat from your laptop can be equally important for male fertility. The heat produced by laptops is definitely not sperm-friendly. Doctors have warned against hanging around in saunas and hot tubs too much if you want to avoid male fertility issues caused by too much heat–the same goes for your laptop. If you want healthy sperm, keep that laptop heat away!
Conclusion? If you’re a guy, there’s clear evidence that blocking radiation and heat from your laptop is a good idea if you’re worried about fertility (now or in the future).
Laptop Radiation Can Actually Damage Your DNA
The DNA in sperm isn’t the only DNA that can be damaged by laptop radiation. Research links the actual structure of DNA to reactive damage that can be caused by EMFs (source). Dr. Martin Blank of Columbia University headed this interesting study, and is deeply concerned about the impact EMFs can have on DNA.
So is there reason to be concerned about this reactive DNA? In my opinion, yes, it’s something you want to consider.
If laptop radiation has the capability of causing changes on a cellular level in our bodies–even if this doesn’t cause immediate and obvious harm–then I’m a little concerned about what this means over the long-term.
Sure, sitting with a laptop in your lap for a couple hours probably isn’t a big deal. But a few hours every day, year after year… for decades? It’s hard for science to truly predict what impact that can have on our health.
After all, just a couple decades ago laptops were a rarity in the general population. And a couple decades before that? The average person didn’t even own a computer!
So just like with the modern food supply, we’re sort of a live experiment when it comes to laptop radiation. The damage doesn’t happen over one day or even one month–it’s the really long-term effects that are of the most concern.
3 Ways to Reduce Laptop Radiation Exposure
1. Stop using your laptop. Yeah, I know, that’s sort of pointing out the obvious. And chances are, you probably don’t want to give up your laptop. (Heck, I’m about to invest in a laptop for myself so I can take blogging on the road with me when I need to.) So for most of us, this isn’t a realistic option–but since technically it is an option, I had to say it.
2. Get the laptop off your lap. All right, here’s your next piece of obvious advice: don’t use your laptop on your lap. Sit at a desk or table instead and treat it like a “normal” computer. But yes, I totally realize this is probably not how you want to use your laptop, so go on to #3 for a more practical solution for heavy laptop users.
3. Use a high quality laptop shield. Okay, okay, I really do get it. You’re probably using a laptop, and chances are it’s on your lap (that’s what they’re made for, right?). There’s actually a simple solution for reducing your direct exposure to laptop radiation if you prefer to sit with your laptop directly in your lap: a laptop shield. It’s not a complicated or bulky device, just a simple pad engineered and tested to be an effective barrier between you and laptop radiation–like the DefenderPad laptop shield.
Use a DefenderPad Shield to Block Laptop Heat and Radiation
DefenderPad is exactly what you need to protect yourself from laptop radiation. When used under your laptop, its advanced shielding technology reduces harmful admissions to undetectable levels.
Independent testing shows the DefenderPad protects you from:
- Extremely Low Frequency (ELF)
- Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR)
- Radio Frequency (RF)
- Heat Radiation (HR)
Like I mentioned, I am about to purchase a laptop for blogging (my computer is so old it’s ridiculous!), and I would not consider using a laptop without my DefenderPad. Luckily it slides right into a laptop case, so it’s completely convenient to carry around whenever (and wherever) I need to work. Mobility is an important reason why I’m getting a laptop in the first place, so the convenience of a DefenderPad is a huge perk for me.
Questions? Visit the DefenderPad FAQ page to learn more about their laptop shield and how it works!
Remember, if you want to use a laptop safely, a DefenderPad is a must.
P.S. The DefenderPad is not just for laptops! It’s also great to use with tablets and eReaders. They also just came out with some great new options for other devices as well!
Watch this video to learn more:
How do You Plan on Preventing Laptop Radiation?
Let me know in the comments below how you protect yourself from your laptop. Did you find the information in this article helpful?
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Elizabeth is the founder and creative director at The Nourished Life. Her mission is to help people find a more balanced (less stressful!) approach to living a happy, healthy life. Read more about Elizabeth here.