Print 23 comment(s) - last by ClownPuncher.. on Dec 8 at 3:48 PM

But UCLA researchers say they don't have enough evidence to prove it

Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), claim that they've found a correlation between prenatal cell phone exposure and behavioral issues during childhood, but do not have enough data to say that it's a sure thing. 

Leeka Kheifets, Ph.D., study leader and a professor of epidemiology at UCLA's School of Public Health, along with her team of researchers, have found a possible relationship between a mother's cell phone use while pregnant and behavioral problems in the child later on. 

There are quite a few theories that suggest cell phones may have other negative effects on the human body, but according to Scientific American, it really depends on who you ask. While some theories have noted that it may contribute to brain tumors and cancer, others say the opposite.

"There are theories, but we do not know," said Kheifets. "Exposure to the fetus is likely to be very low, so it's unclear how it can influence fetal development."

To find this possible correlation, Kheifets and her team of researchers analyzed the data on mothers who participated in the Danish National Birth Cohort study, which asked them lifestyle questions including amount of cell phone use during and after pregnancy. They also studied data on cell phone use from these mothers' children, which amounted to 28,745 7-year-olds. 

The mother's were interviewed when their children turned seven, where they were asked about the child's cell phone use and behavioral problems. According to the study's overall results, 18 percent of children were exposed to cell phone use before and after pregnancy. Now, 35.2 percent of 7-year-olds used a cell phone, but less than one percent of them used a cell phone for more than one hour a week. Based on what their mother's said, 93 percent of the children had no behavioral issues while 3.1 percent showed signs of hyperactivity/inattention, relationship problems and conduct problems. 

The next step, according to Kheifets, is to conduct this study again when the children are 11 years old. Kheifets would like to see if these percentages remain stable over the years, or if they take a drastic turn one way or the other. 

Despite the fact that researchers are unsure as to whether cell phone use negatively influences a child's behavior, Kheifets warns that it can't hurt to reduce exposure anyway.

"Be aware of your exposure and while the science develops, use precaution," said Kheifets. "It is very easy to reduce exposure by keeping your phone away from the body and using a hands-free device, so why not do it?"

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Correlation does not mean causation.
By Divineburner on 12/7/2010 10:36:08 AM , Rating: 5
Note that this is merely a correlation, it does in no way imply causation.

One obvious way this can correlate is that if the mother uses cell phone heavily even during pregnancy, she may continue to focus on the cell phone instead of the baby/child later on, and that leads to behavioral problems. The cell phone could be easily replaced by a video game, and the same correlation would appear.

RE: Correlation does not mean causation.
By kattanna on 12/7/2010 10:43:14 AM , Rating: 3
The cell phone could be easily replaced by a video game, and the same correlation would appear.

exactly. the mother could have personal issues that are simply manifesting themselves via the cell phone. those personal issues are whats then passed on to the child

RE: Correlation does not mean causation.
By Fracture on 12/7/2010 1:08:22 PM , Rating: 3
Just bad parenting skills from the first generation cell phone owners. No causation here and probably little correlation with cell phone use .

RE: Correlation does not mean causation.
By Dr of crap on 12/7/2010 3:30:54 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly - The parenting skills of the last 15-25 is crappy to say the least and getting worse every year. We don't hit kids anymore, we put them in time out.
We don't yell at our kids anymore.

The greatest generation would have said otherwise and for good reason. I knew that if I did something wrong, good old Dad would be there to swat my ass good and proper. It was a deterent and I am non the less for having it done to me. And we passed this unto our kids.
My kids have respect for their elders and don't do drugs or drink. Why you might ask? Because we did PARENTING corectly.

RE: Correlation does not mean causation.
By guffwd13 on 12/7/2010 6:35:46 PM , Rating: 1
yeah, maybe if your generation learned how to parent properly, the current parental generation would know how to do it too.

why don't you try teaching your children how converse in english properly. how about "nonetheless" for starters. better late then never.

oh yeah, and thanks for the pension and social security woes you left us. glad your generation was watching out for those beyond yours!

RE: Correlation does not mean causation.
By Reclaimer77 on 12/7/2010 8:30:11 PM , Rating: 2
why don't you try teaching your children how converse in english properly

Hypocrite much? You have terrible grammar. In fact not once did you even capitalize the start of a sentence. You couldn't even type "english" right, it's E nglish!

By ClownPuncher on 12/8/2010 3:48:32 PM , Rating: 1
You can't "type right". You can, however, "type correctly".

This game sucks, I want a beer.

RE: Correlation does not mean causation.
By rburnham on 12/7/2010 6:39:41 PM , Rating: 2
I really wish parents would spank their kids. My dad had to do it to me once or twice growing up, which saved him countless hours of "calling time out" or other similar ineffectual bullshit. Intimidation worked wonders and eventually build respect between us. These day it seems like too many parents want to be buddies with their kids instead of parents.

By Dr of crap on 12/8/2010 8:55:42 AM , Rating: 2
Thank you, My point exactly. The above whining poster can kiss my A##.
It's the ones in charge that have made this mess. We can't even kill those that get the death penality. They sit in prison for 10 years first.

Spank your kids, put them in their place and they'll grow up right!

Use a little force to get the criminals. Take away the TV from prisoners.
Make them do manual labor for us outside.
Can we stop pandering to every body! It doesn't work!

By Etsp on 12/7/2010 12:17:39 PM , Rating: 2
XKCD did a comic about correlation and causation that really emphasizes this point:

RE: Correlation does not mean causation.
By FITCamaro on 12/7/2010 12:40:53 PM , Rating: 2
There people go again with their common sense. Why can't you just let scientists blame whatever thing of the year they don't like on whatever thing they think to be a problem without any actual proof of their claims?

RE: Correlation does not mean causation.
By ClownPuncher on 12/7/2010 1:39:46 PM , Rating: 2
It helps us old folks go "So, THAT's what is wrong with the current generation of kids".

That way we don't have to think or take off our rose colored glasses.

By guffwd13 on 12/7/2010 6:38:10 PM , Rating: 1
see now thats the kinda humor i can appreciate. i'd vote you up if i hadn't been so young an impulsive and posted before i read the whole thread.

By kerpwnt on 12/7/2010 12:57:43 PM , Rating: 2
At least this article isn't incorrectly paraphrasing research like some DT articles have in the past. This article uses "may" in the title and discloses that there is not enough data to prove anything.
But UCLA researchers say they don't have enough evidence to prove it

By MozeeToby on 12/7/2010 1:05:24 PM , Rating: 2
It's also all self reported info by the parents, which is supposed to be a huge no-no for these kinds of studies. Now you've got to try to factor in even more intangibles because you're talking about how a parent perceives their child, rather than as an outside expert would diagnose them.

By Breathless on 12/7/2010 12:55:04 PM , Rating: 3
Whoop em good = no more behavioral problems.

The plus is that you can still use your cell phone during pregnancy.

RE: sheesh....
By FITCamaro on 12/7/2010 4:27:24 PM , Rating: 2
Word. My parents beat my ass with belt when I misbehaved. Direct effect. I behaved.

RE: sheesh....
By ShaolinSoccer on 12/7/2010 5:47:55 PM , Rating: 2
My mom would use her fingernails and pinch me hard on my side. It worked!

RE: sheesh....
By guffwd13 on 12/7/2010 6:43:20 PM , Rating: 2
funny it only made me angry and want to do more bad things.

but when i irritated my mom so much she screamed, "God, I wish I were dead" - THAT got to me and I stopped.

but maybe i'm a horse of a different color.

By Spivonious on 12/7/2010 10:33:43 AM , Rating: 3
Was there a control group in this study? Without that the results are meaningless.

I call BS on this study...
By MrBlastman on 12/7/2010 10:47:52 AM , Rating: 3
For several reasons. First, the study states:

but do not have enough data to say that it's a sure thing.

They simply correlate the percentage of ADHD in children with them being exposed to cellular radiation. That is all. This does not imply causation! They don't even have enough data to prove it.

Furthermore, simple logic and science can go large bounds to disprove this theory.

Firstly, radio waves do not penetrate salt water well at all! The womb of a mother is full of amniotic fluid, which, coincidentally, is comprised of practically the same salinity as seawater (0.9% I believe). It has been proven that only very low frequency radio waves can penetrate salt water. Regular water is a different story, but the presence of salt in the solution makes a huge difference. This is the precise reason why nuclear submarines can only use VLF radio transmissions underwater (up to 30 khz) and that is only up to a depth of 20 meters. If they need to use UHF or VHF, they have to surface.

Secondly, this study was based on findings over a seven year period; GSM has been around since the 1990's and was being introduced here in the states in the late 90's and early 2000's. At the very least, these phones were operating at 380 MHz or higher. UHF is defined as 300 MHz to 3 GHz; VHF is from 30 MHz to 300 MHz.

Wait, both of those are a fair bit higher than 30 KHz.

Hold on a minute. I've been around for some time, I'm in my mid-30's and I've suffered from ADHD my whole life. It's a real condition as far as I'm concerned but I'm doing just fine with it. Wait, there weren't cell phones in the 70's so how come I have it? Now, with this logic, I'm basing my conclusion on theirs--correlation equals causation. But, it doesn't. :) It never does. We need facts, we need data. As far as I'm concerned, I've provided a little inkling here to start to chip away at their theory. I deserve some government money to waste.

Consider the mother, perhaps
By ciparis on 12/7/2010 10:38:14 AM , Rating: 2
Study process notwithstanding, if the newborn's mother spends most of her time with a phone in her hands, maybe she's not doing the best job of parenting.

By Beenthere on 12/7/2010 10:47:21 AM , Rating: 2
That's because the parents are braindead cellphone addicts.

"When an individual makes a copy of a song for himself, I suppose we can say he stole a song." -- Sony BMG attorney Jennifer Pariser

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