Exposure to RF-EMF & SPD


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Dr. Martin Pall Lecture 2015  
Focus For Health / Autism One Conference 

Links Between EMFs and Autism: A Conversation with Cindy Sage and Dr. Martha Herbert  CHE EMF Working Group Call 10 December 2013 /  Transcript/Notes
Technology puts children at risk for developing Sensory Processing Disorders.  Children these days are using a lot of technology.  This includes infants and toddlers.  The many hours a day children spend watching and interacting with screens is taking valuable time away from life experiences and interaction with other human beings.  Real world activities provide rich and varied sensory input that stimulates children's healthy development.  Technology simply does not provide the types of sensory input that are essential.  Technology use can also lead to touch deprivation, another factor in SPD. 

In her book, Virtual Child, Cris Rowan, OT explains that "children who overuse technology have too much sensory input to the auditory and visual channels, and too little sensory input into the vestibular, tactile and proprioceptive (touch and movement) channels.  This sensory imbalance results in suboptimal development and consequent impairments in attention and learning ability."  
The Impact of Technology on Child Sensory and Motor Development 
Article by Cris Rowan, OTR

Zone'in Fact Sheet - See pg. 5
A Research Review Regarding the Impact of Technology on Child Development, Behavior and Academic Performance
by Cris Rowan, OTR

Book recommendation - 
The Virtual Child: The Terrifying Truth About What Technology Is Doing To Children by Cris Rowan, OTR 
Conservative estimates indicate 1 in 20 children in the United States has some form of Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD).
The majority of autistic children experience SPD.  Estimates
range from 75 - 100% co-occurence. 

Technology puts children at risk for developing SPD.

Exposing children to wireless radiation (RF-EMF or EMR) puts
them at risk for developing SPD.
Exposing children to microwave radiation - in and of itself - puts them at risk for developing Sensory Processing Disorder.  While no one is studying this correlation directly, here is some evidence to consider:

1.)  Exposure to RF-EMF is the primary cause of Autism according to leading experts.  The overwhelming majority of children with Autism, have SPD.  In fact, it is one of the main indicators doctors use to diagnose Autism

2.) Sensory up-regulation is very common in people who suffer from Electro Hypersensitivity (EHS).  This includes hyper-sensitivity to light, sounds, smells, tastes, skin sensitivity and multiple chemical sensitivities.

3.) Scientific evidence clearly indicates the vestibular apparatus is highly vulnerable to the impacts of exposure to RF-EMF.  If the vestibular sense which is the foundational sense has been damaged, it throws off the other sensory systems of the body.  Wireless radiation has also been shown to cause direct harm to other senses such as hearing and vision.

Please consult the references below under Research: Exposure to EMR & SPD for more detailed information.  

Also, the effects of RF-EMF exposure on the hippocampus 
has been proven to cause short term memory loss.  This may also compound the challenges of SPD.  

National Association for Children and Safe Technology

Research: Exposure to EMR & SPD 

Research: Sensory Processing Disorder (Not EMR Specific)

Technology and SPD

Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) is a neurological condition affecting many children.  Conservative estimates indicate 1 in 20 suffer from SPD (Miller 2004) while another study indicates 1 in 6 are affected (Ben-Sasson, Briggs-Gowan 2009).  SPD can be a debilitating condition affecting a child's safety, self esteem, relationships, daily routines / activities, and their overall quality of life. 

Most people are familiar with the 5 main senses - touch, taste, smell, hearing and sight.  There are two other major senses - the vestibular and proprioceptive senses.

The vestibular sense is the first to fully develop at 12 -14 weeks of gestation and is the foundation for all other sensory systems in the body.  The vestibular sense, located in the inner ear is responsible for our sense of balance and movement.  It helps us to maintain an upright position, provides information on spatial orientation, and tells us how fast our body is moving.  

The proprioceptive sense, also known as the “position sense”, includes receptors located in the skin, muscles, and joints.  Our proprioceptive sense provides information about the position of our body parts without looking at them and helps gauge how much force/ pressure/ effort to use when completing a physical task.

All of our senses are closely linked and work in concert with the brain to achieve normal sensory integration.  When a child suffers from SPD, their brain is either not receiving sensory input or not processing sensory input accurately.  As a result, the child maybe under or over responsive to certain types of sensory experiences.  When a child with SPD is overly responsive to a type of sensation, they will show signs of sensory defensiveness / avoidance.  When a child is under-responsive to a type of sensation, they will exhibit sensory seeking behaviors.  Individuals can have one or more impaired senses and they can exhibit both under and over responsive behaviors at different times.  

Many children with SPD are misunderstood because of a lack of common knowledge about this disorder.  They are often misdiagnosed or simply not diagnosed at all.  There is a debate regarding whether SPD is actually a separate disorder or a characteristic of other disorders like Autism, Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Anxiety Disorder or Fragile X Syndrome.  The majority of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), have sensory processing issues.  In fact, it is one of the symptoms doctors look for when they diagnose children with Autism.  Estimates range from 75% - 100% of ASD patients have SPD.  Children can have SPD independently, without symptoms of Autism or another disorder.  

Children with SPD often suffer from low-self esteem and other social-emotional issues because their condition makes it hard for them to concentrate, interact with others and have control over their own movements and lives.  Children with proprioceptive difficulties for example, cannot get their body to do what their brain wants without a great deal of effort - something most of us take for granted.

While SPD is a neurological disorder, it maybe influenced by imbalances in other systems of the body.  Because there are so many variations within the condition, it is highly probable there is more than one cause of SPD.

Please refer to the many excellent resources located on this page to learn more about SPD.
Autism and RF-EMF

Research: EMR and Effects on the Hippocampus

Chang, Y.S., Gratiot, M., Owen, J., Brandes-Aitken, A., Desai, S., Hill, S., Arnett, A., Harris, J., Marco, E., Mukherjee, P. (2016). White Matter Microstructure is Associated with Auditory and Tactile Processing in Children with and without Sensory Processing Disorder. Frontiers in Neuroanatomy.  9:169.

Lane, S.J., Reynolds, S., Thacker, L. (March 2010). Sensory Over-Responsivity and ADHD: Differentiating Using Electrodermal Responses, Cortisol, and Anxiety. Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience. Volume 4 | Article 8
Page 1 - "Results suggest that ADHD should be considered in conjunction with anxiety and sensory responsivity; both may be related to bottom-up processing differences, and deficits in prefrontal cortex/hippocampal synaptic gating."

Ben-Sasson, A., Carter, A., Briggs-Gowan, M. (20 January 2009). Sensory Overresponsivity in Elementary School: Prevalence and Social-Emotional Correlates. Journal of Abnormal Psychology 37:705-716.

Solan, H.A., Shelley-Tremblay, J., Larson, S. (2007). Vestibular Function, Sensory Integration, and Balance Anomalies: A Brief Literature Review. Optometry and Vision Development; 38(1): 13-17.
Page 13 - "Delayed vestibular maturation correlates significantly with sensory integration dysfunctions, slow vision processing, impaired hearing, and reading disability."

Ahn, R., Miller, L., Milberger, S. &  McIntosh, D. (2004). Prevalence of Parents' Perceptions of Sensory Processing Disorders Among Kindergarten Children. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 58, 297-293.
Sensory Processing Disorder
Markov, M. & Gregoriev, G. (2015). Protect Children From EMF. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine. Taylor & Francis Group.
Page 254 - "Very important is that children brain as the entire organism of children is in a process of development for many years and no one can predict the long-lasting problem that might occur as a result of exposure to RF in the early age. 

Usually the discussion about potential RF effects on human brain starts and ends with the probability of brain cancer occurrence.  We believe that this is a very superficial approach.  Yes, brain is major player in the central nervous system.  Main, but not only.

For the first time during the whole history of civilization, the most critical system of the body - the brain and nervous structures of the inner ear of the child and adolescent are exposed to unknown risk of RF EMF.  In this case, the potential risk to the health of children is very high (Gregoriev, 2012).  Exposing brain and located in the inner ear nerve structures, such as receptors and transmission pathways (securing the normal functioning of hearing and vestibular analyzers) children undergo serious risk (Gergoriev, 2005).

Recently, Grigoriev and Khorseva (2014) published a 230 pages book, "Mobile Communications and Children Health" that summarizes the existing knowledge in potential hazard of RF on children...Grigoriev and Khorseva provided data of eight-year continuous psycho physiological investigation of school students that indicate alterations in the functioning of visual and hearing analyzers under RF mobile telethons exposure."

Markov, M. & Grigoriev, Y. (June 2013). Wi-Fi Technology - An Uncontrolled Global Experiment on the Health of Mankind. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine. Informa UK Ltd.  
Page 205 - " In evaluation of the mobile phone EMF hazard for children, the main problem is the direct effect of the EMF on the brain of the child, which is the critical organ.  One should remember that the child's brain is still in process of the physiological development.  Moreover, using the mobile phones children expose to EMF daily and in duration of years not only brain, but the complex nerve structures in the inner ear that are responsible for normal functioning of the hearing and of the vestibular analyzers (Grigoriev, 2006a,b, 2012b)."

Markov, M. & Grigoriev, Y. (20 December 2011). Mobile Communications and Health of Population: The Risk Assessment, Social and Ethical Problems. Springer Science + Business Media | Environmentalist DOI 10.1007/s10669-011-9371-4.
Page 1 - "Today world population lives in a new electromagnetic environment, characterized with (i) around the clock enforcement of chronic exposure of all age and gender groups to a wide range of modulated electromagnetic fields (EMF) from base stations; (ii) daily, repeated from early childhood throughout entire life exposure to EMF RF mobile phone the brain and vestibular receptor apparatus and auditory analyzers, located directly 'under the EMF beam' in the inner ear."

Mallery-Blythe, E. (December 2014). Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity - A Summary | Working Draft Version 1.
Page 2 - "(EHS) Characterized by multiple sensory up-regulation:  Up-regulation of all senses is commonly noted in persons with EHS, i.e. photophobia and / or scotopic sensitivity syndrome (visual sensitivity), hyperacusis (hearing sensitivity), hyperosmia (heightened sense of smell), hypergeusia (heightened taste sensitivity), hyperesthesia/photosensitivity (heightened skin sensitivity) and multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) is associated."  (See also footnotes 17, 18, 99, 109)

Herbert, M. & Sage, C. (December 2012). Bioinitiative Report, Section 20: Finding In Autism (ASD) Consistent With Electromagnetic Fields (EMF) and Radiofrequency Radiation (RFR). Bioinitiative Working Group.
Pages 45 - 46  Sensory Processing -  "At the symptomatic level, issues with sensory processing are highly prevalent in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).  Phenomenology can include hypersensitivity to external stimuli, hyposensitivity to internal sensations and difficulty localizing sensations including pain, and difficulty processing more than one sensory channel at one time.  There is now electrophysiological evidence of abnormalities at early (brain stem) stages of sensory processing as well as in later stages of processing that occur in the cortex."   

"Given this diversity in findings, the heterogeneity of ASD, and broad varibility seen over and over again in the ASD groups almost irrespective of the study, it is hard to image that one single theory could account for all of these observations...it is therefore probable that several mechanisms and neuronal abnormalities, most likely at multiple levels...all contribute to varying degrees to the abnormal sensory processing observed in ASD."

"It is also possible that the mechanisms may not simply be neural - they may also be modulated by glial, metabolic, immune, perfusional and other physiological processes and physical properties as well.  Yet although there is some consideration of the pathophysiology-sensory function interaction, it has basically not been fleshed out in studies of ASDs with experimental designs integrating pathophysiology and electrophysiology."

Adams, R. L.  & Williams, R. A. (10 October 1975). Biological Effects of Electromagnetic Radiation (Radiowaves and Microwaves) - Eurasian Communist Countries (U). U.S. Army Medical Intelligence and Information Agency, Office of the Surgeon General.
Page 8 -  Part 4 - Central Nervous System "Various neurological disorders were investigated by studying the vestibular and visual analyzer functions in persons exposed to radio waves of varying types for various periods.  Elevations of the threshold of excitability was also accompanied by a lengthening of time required for dark adaptation.  The magnitude and intensity of the changes tended to increase with length of exposure.  Similar studies showed increases in the threshold of olfactory sensitivity."  In another study of persons occupationally exposed to a super high frequency microwave field it was found that, "Their reflexes in response to light and sound were weak, distorted, or non-existent and their skin galvanic reaction to flashing light was abnormally intense and prolonged."

Lebovitz, R. (March 1972). The Sensitivity of Portions of the Human Central Nervous System to "Safe" Levels of Microwave Radiation R-983-RC. Rand Corporation.
This 28 page report discusses in great detail the vestibular sense and the impact of exposure to non-thermal microwaves (in adults).  Since there is no blood flow to the inner ear, it is particularly vulnerable to heating from "non-thermal"  microwaves.
Page v  Summary- "In this report we propose a novel hypothesis:  that the human vestibular apparatus (the inner ear) may be responsive to low-level MW radiation via indirect, caloric stimulation.  The semi-circular canals of the inner ear are part of a very sensitive receptor apparatus for the detection of cranial acceleration, and this sensitivity appears to provide a plausible mechanism for the transformation of low levels of MW energy into significant neuronal input." 

See pages 14 - 20 and 21 - 23 also.