4G LTE is one of the widest, more distributed, and long-lasting telecom protocols existing. 5G, the newest protocol, is slowly being deployed worldwide, but 4G LTE is still working and will be for the foreseeable future. Is it as impactful as the 5G? Are we exposed in the same ways as with 5G? 


Over the last couple of years, all the attention regarding potential health and environmental risks of telecoms has gone to 5G. We have always emphasized that the focus should not be solely on if 5G is dangerous or not, but we should be digging deeper into the risks of the predominant network nowadays: 4G LTE. The studies made around 4G LTE are an important basis to unravel the neverending questions about the risks of microwave telecoms since their first generation.

Not that long ago, 4G was the peak of data transmission alongside WiFi.  As of now, 4G networks are still the dominant network in America, with most voice, text, and calls being handled over this protocol. This isn’t projected to change any time soon, with 5G networks mostly looking to manage data. Thus, high-speed 5G phones will continue to use 4G networks, which seem to live longer than 2030.

But even when 4G is way more common and present than 5G, people are not paying enough attention to its impacts, as they are too busy thinking about the effects of a non-fully-deployed 5G. Of course, 5G will have a significant impact in terms of EMF exposure, but it’s not going to be a lot different than what we are currently experiencing with 4G.

In this article, we will explain more about this telecom protocol and its effects in terms of  RF electromagnetic field exposure.

What is 4G?

4G (short for “Fourth Generation”) is a specification laid down by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in 2008, specifically by the ITU-R (which deals with radio communications). 4G is known today primarily for its broadband capabilities and significantly faster speed than 3G, which introduced data connectivity into the cellular space in early 2000.

4G is currently the most advanced technology that’s adopted by the majority of mobile network service providers. 5G is more powerful, of course, but it hasn’t been deployed by the vast majority of mobile providers in the world. It’s still a work in progress.

When it initially came out, 4G quickly changed how we use mobile internet. While 3G networks were relatively fast, 4G network connections allowed users to browse the web and stream HD videos on mobile devices, which basically turned smartphones into the computers of the modern age. 4G networks came to ensure that no matter how much data is needed, you can maintain stable speeds almost everywhere.

Does exposure to 4G cell phone radiation affect our health?

Like all telecoms and electronic devices, 4G does have an impact both on human health and the environment. But before going further into this, there’s something we have to understand: the problem is not exclusively limited to 4G and 5G. Since humanity had the technology to communicate through radio signals, we have been exposed to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields, signals that are not compatible with biological systems and, therefore, affect them. The only thing that has changed through the years is the grown intensity in every new generation and the expansion of the networks, as we have these signals almost everywhere.

Now, having that important consideration in mind, there’s another thing we should know: Like 5G, 4G was launched without any pre-market safety testing. Not a surprise at all. And, although 4G technology has been in use for more than a decade, there are just a few studies that have been conducted on the effects of exposure.

The proven health effects of 4G exposure 

According to Joel M. Moskowitz, research has found that exposure to 4G radiation leads to a change in intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) that may result in “genotoxic stress, decreased proliferation, and cell senescence or no physiological effects depending on ROS concentration and the differential sensitivity of various cells to ROS.” Several studies on human subjects have found that short-term exposure to LTE radiation affects brain functioning.

A study published in March 2021 named The effect of 4.5 G (LTE Advanced-Pro network) mobile phone radiation on the optic nerve, supported optic nerve damage. In the study, for the first time, it was shown that exposition to 4.5 G mobile phone radiation for 2 hours/day for 6 weeks causes optic nerve damage. The optic nerve transmits all visual information to the visual cortex, and any damage to this nerve can cause severe and permanent vision loss. This study demonstrated that RF exposure might be an environmental risk factor for eye toxicity and potential eye disorders.

Effects of mobile phone radiation on specific hematological parameters, another study published in 2020, showed a significant change in the hematological components. “The exposed blood samples were found to display a decrease in platelet count. Hemoglobin level, ESR rate, and WBC counts were found to be increased. While these observations are performed under controlled laboratory conditions, given the tremendous growth in the number of mobile phone users, the effects could be a real concern, especially in workplaces and cities even through passive exposure.”

As of the behavioral side, the study Early-life exposure to pulsed LTE radiofrequency fields causes persistent changes in activity and behavior in mice concluded that repeated exposure to low-level RF fields in early life might have a continuous and long-term effect on adult behavior.

Several studies have also shown substantial evidence that confirms that constant exposure to radiofrequency EMF affects reproductive function, especially male reproductive potential and spermatogenesis.

What can we do to avoid these effects?

The expansion and evolution of telecommunications and technology are unstoppable. We embrace this, and we know how much this implies to our society, but we are convinced that there are safer ways to use technologies and deploy new telecom protocols. Based on that premise, Noxtak has developed the SPIRO material, a solution to filter artificial EMF.

When transferring information through telecommunications, technologies generate an artificial polarization and create an imbalance in particles’ charge. Using applied nanomagnetism, SPIRO operates as a passive filter that does not affect the wave path, but balances the charges and the magnetic disorientation those particles carry.

By working with magnetic dominance intensities, we can react at any level of frequencies in the spectrum. This technology works across the entire electromagnetic frequency spectrum and can scale for any level of radiation intensity, including industrial and military groups.

For example, to handle typical emission levels from personal devices, you’ll only need three protected Spiro films on a PVC card that has the same size as a credit card (Spiro Card L2). That is sufficient to handle the standard intensity of 4G and the new 5G phones.

So, if you are looking for a solution that equally protects you from telecom emissions, SPIRO is for you. Go to our products section to know more about our technology and all the solutions we have available for all the different needs.

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