Dying to be tech savvy

PHOTO: Dying to be tech savvy

Family physician Dr Ameen Shaik says while technology is impressive, there are major drawbacks that are extremely hazardous to one's health.

"It's shocking that children are being exposed to electronic gadgets at a very young age for long periods of time, although it's a fact that these gadgets have negative side effects like headache, hearing loss, insomnia, eye problem, forgetfulness, irritation, neck and wrist pain, repetitive strain injury and other orthopedic complications.

"Many of these gadgets produce electromagnetic fields that emit harmful electromagnetic radiation. For example, emissions from mobile phones can disable a safety barrier in our blood causing proteins and toxins to leak into the brain, increasing the chances of developing Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson's disease. Exposure to this radiation can also lead to heart diseases and kidney stones.

"These health risks are getting worldwide attention. Even the World Health Organisation is very much concerned. Shouldn't parents be even more worried?"

Dr Ameen says that it's time parents stopped being so relaxed about the long-term effects of technology.

"Another issue with constant use of gadgets is the tendency for kids to get lazy. Before you know it, your kid would much rather stay home in front of a screen than go to the playground. If it goes unchecked we'll soon be dealing with more child obesity cases."

He adds: "Parents should avoid buying tech gadgets for their children until they are 9 or 10 years old. If your child already has tech toys, monitor the use of these devices and learn ways to reduce health dangers, like buying screen protectors for computers and using headphones instead of earphones."