In a modern internet-savvy generation, laptops are the most common productivity gadgets. They are not only portable but also powerful and convenient.
However, contrary to its name suggests, a laptop should not be placed on your lap. When you place a laptop on your lap, it does emit harmful radiations. You expose yourself to harmful electromagnetic field (EMF) radiations.
Does laptop emit harmful radiation?
Laptops emit EMF at different frequencies and it has been proven that these EMFs are dangerous to your health. These EMFs can easily get into your vital body organs when you place the laptop on your lap.
If you expose yourself to high doses of electromagnetic radiation, it can lead to serious health complications. Some of the health problems that are associated with EMFs include some form of cancer, effect to your reproductive organs, cause disturbance to sleep patterns, among others.
Besides the Smartphone’s and smart meters, laptops have the highest EMF. Considering the close proximity of the computer to the body, the effects are more concerning.
Laptops emit two kinds of harmful radiations, and these are:
- Magnetic radiation
- Radiofrequency radiation
According to studies, when a device is connected to the internet more especially the Wi-Fi, it emits all the kinds’ radiations at a go. For this reason, it is critical to understand these radiations and know how to protect yourself from them.
In this section, we will consider the following three types of EMF radiations:
Magnetic field radiation
Magnetic radiation is common to all electronics. According to research, most electronics emit a fair amount of MF radiations.
However, as you move away from the device emitting it, its effect falls off quickly. According to the inverse law of physics, as you move double the distance from the radiation source, the exposure to it falls by a quarter.
Therefore, the bigger the distance from the radiation source, the better the protection against its effect. For a device such as a laptop which you place on your lap, the distance to your body is small; this increases the exposure to the radiations.
The MFR of a laptop comes from its bottom or base. The base is the part that is in contact with your lap. The motherboard is found to emit the most significant amount of magnetic-field radiation.
According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), it is recommended that you limit the proximity of a laptop to your lap between 0.5 mG and 2.5 mG.
Laptops have very minimal safety margins when it comes to magnetic field radiation. Besides the base of the laptop, it has been found that other electronic parts of the computer also produce magnetic field radiations. The most common parts are the inverter and the motherboard.
When the magnetic-field radiation of a laptop is measured with the EMF meter, it indicates that different parts of the laptop have varying amounts of radiation emissions.
However, although different parts produce different amounts of radiations, cumulatively, these radiations are high.
Whenever radiation and electronic devices are mentioned, radiofrequency radiation is the first kind of radiation that most people think of.
Radiofrequency radiation is emitted whenever a laptop sends or receives wireless data. It mostly occurs when the device is connected either to the Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.
Besides that, there are two actual sources of radiofrequency radiation on laptops. These sources are the Bluetooth antenna and the wireless/airport card. In this section, we will consider the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radiations.
Wi-Fi Laptop Radiation
The Wi-Fi radiation is emitted from the wireless card of the laptop. Whenever a device is connected to the Wi-Fi, it will emit a considerable amount of radiation.
While you are connected to the internet, and you are surfing, wireless data is sent and received by the laptop. The information over the Wi-Fi is sent in the form of packets, and the radiations are high.
However, if you maintain a more significant distance from your laptop during this time, the safer you will be from the radiation. But this is not always possible because as you work on the computer, some parts of your body will be in contact with the laptop.
It is recommended that as you work on your laptop and it is connected to the Wi-Fi, keep your head at least two feet away from the laptop. This distance will reduce the amount of radiation that you expose yourself to.
Another form of radiofrequency radiation from the laptop is Bluetooth radiation. It has been found out that whether your laptop has a Bluetooth connection or not, it will still emit radiations as it tries to search for other devices to connect.
However, the amount of radiations that are emitted is small. Most importantly, if you want to stop your laptop from emitting Bluetooth radiations, ensure that you turn off the Bluetooth.
Dangers of laptop emitted harmful radiations
Overexposure to EMF radiation from a laptop poses cumulative severe effects on your health. The following are some of the risks of EMF-radiations:
When you use a computer for a long time, the processor will start to generate heat. If you have placed the laptop on your lap, and the heat increases, it can affect sperm production. With prolonged use, the heat can damage the sperms.
If you put your laptop directly on your belly without any protection, you expose yourself to EMF radiation. Studies have indicated that overexposure to EMF increases the chances of miscarriage.
Research has found a direct relationship between DNA fragmentation and exposure to EMF radiations. The radiation changes the DNA structure and increase the chances of developing some form of cancer.
Therefore, ensure that you protect yourself against EMF radiation to reduce the chances of developing cancer or DNA damage.
How can I protect myself from laptop radiation?
There are some proven methods through which you can protect yourself against laptop radiation. If you follow the following suggestions, you will drastically reduce exposure to radiation.
Monitor your usage of laptop
It is very critical to monitor your laptop usage. Put it at the back of your mind that EMF-radiations from the laptop have cumulative effects. The less you expose yourself to these radiations, the safer you will be.
You might not feel the immediate effect of the EMF unless you are electro-hypersensitive. However, remember that in one way or another, you are exposed to EMF radiations.
Therefore, you do not have to completely stop using your laptop because you are concerned about radiation exposure.
The most critical step to take is to reduce the long term cumulative effects of overexposure to the radiations. Use your laptop but in moderation.
Buy a radiation shield
A radiation shield is an essential add on to your laptop. This radiation shield is a thick pad that is made of materials that do not allow EMF radiation to pass through.
The surface of the case has grips that ensure that your laptop does not slide while you are using it. Besides blocking EMF radiations from passing through, the shield also prevents heat from reaching your laps, legs, and belly.
There are numerous varieties of radiation shields in the market today; you can find the one that suits you from here.
In most cases, the radiation shield is made with three layers, which enable it to absorb, divert, or block the radiations.
Most importantly, besides using this pad on the lap, it is critical to use it even on your desk. This is because most of the desktops are not made from materials that can prevent EMF radiation.
Once you get a radiation shield, use it every time you want to use your laptop.
Turn off Bluetooth & Wi-Fi when not in use
There is not much that we can say about this factor because it is self-explanatory. Most of the laptops come with a button where you can turn on or off the Bluetooth. Whenever you have a need for their services, turn them on.
By switching the Bluetooth and Wi-Fi off will go a long way into protecting you, against exposure to EMF radiation.
Most importantly, when the Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are turned off, it completely eliminates the exposure to radiofrequency radiations.
Besides that, if possible, avoid using the Wi-Fi and connect to the internet via the Ethernet cable. This step will significantly reduce your exposure to radiations because the Ethernet cable does not send data as packets.
Does laptop emit harmful radiation? besides the laptops, there are several other electronic devices that use on a daily basis that emit radiation. The solution to the EMF is not doing away with these electronics but finding a way of using them safely.
The best way to use any electronic device is to be moderate. Most importantly, laptop Emit harmful radiations and for the safest method of using these devices is to keep a reasonable distance from them, using protection gear against the EMF and limiting the exposure time.