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Using A Mobile Phone Makes You Age Faster
Constant use of a mobile phone causes premature ageing, warn scientists.
Low level radiation from the phone 'heats up' body cells, damaging skin and making the user look lined and haggard.
The study by Nottingham University's School of Biological Sciences is the latest research to raise concerns about the effect of mobile phones on health.
It will throw further doubt on assurances from manufacturers and safety watchdogs that the phones have no impact on health.
The current Government line is that there is no conclusive proof that mobile phones are a health hazard.
The new report, however, discovered that they can prevent the body's defence mechanisms from working properly.
Usually, the body reacts almost immediately when skin cells are 'under attack'. 'Heat shock' caused by low radiation emissions should lead to the body sending proteins to the damaged areas of skin to repair them.
But, it is feared that heavy use of mobile phones does not give the skin enough time to recover and that the proteins 'gum up' the cells and hinder the natural repair process.
Dr David De Pomerai, who is in charge of the research team, said: 'Gradually, cells don't work properly, so the life process becomes less efficient.
'If you are over-stretching the mechanisms that try to repair damage, the knock-on effect is premature ageing.
'It's possible that something of that sort may be going on in people using mobile phones.' Dr De Pomerai said that heavy mobile phone users were just like heavy smokers who constantly inhaled cell- damaging toxins without allowing the body time to repair the harm done.
Experiments on worms showed that their life spans were shortened by persistent low-radiation emissions, and the scientists feared that humans could be similarly affected.
They want more money to be put into research. 'We need a much bigger study to confirm the results,' said Dr De Pomerai.
Mobile phones are regularly used by 13million Britons, many of them under 35.
Government-backed research has already shown that they affect the brains of people who use them, causing them to 'speed up'. This study, by scientists at Bristol University, suggested that radiation from the phone either heated the brain or scrambled its electrical impulses.
Radiation emissions are already suspected by some of contributing to brain tumours, strokes and Alzheimer’s disease.
Other symptoms reported by mobile phone users include fatigue, dizzy spells and memory loss. Nearly two in three complain of regularly getting headaches from using their phone, although this may be because of bad posture rather than radiation emissions.
Researchers at the University of Surrey say bad posture, particularly holding the phone between the shoulder and cheek to leave the hands free, can cause strain injury and spinal damage.