Oh no, you may be thinking, not another dire health warning. Like most people, I often feel fed up with alarming medical news and conflicting studies (one report implicated wine as a risk for breast cancer, and the next day another praised wine as protection from Alzheimer’s). What a choice! Most of us have had enough of ‘sky-is-falling’ alarms. Yes, it’s tempting to hang up on this wake-up call.

But please don’t! There are effective solutions in my book, A Wellness Guide For The Digital Age.

First, let’s look at how we have become cocooned in convenience, in radiation hot spots, as it turns out. Realizing this hit me hard. I have been a health educator for thirty-five years yet have never faced an issue as challenging, and personally unsettling, as this one.

Yes, there is some urgency to this message.

One pioneering researcher told me, “By the time we have scientific consensus, if we ever do, we are going to have lost a lot of people.” Not my children, I protested. Now I am also fighting for yours.

In the spring of 2006, I was concerned about the proximity of high voltage power lines – a health hazard I knew about – too close to a new addition at our youngest child’s school. Then I discovered the school’s wireless Internet, and the cell tower nearby, were also putting the children at risk. And it wasn’t just school exposure.

Our home contained the usual must-have electronic gadgets: digital cordless phones and wireless Internet, of course. Then I had a professional assessment done.

Talk about an electric shock! Our youngest child’s canopy bed – so beautifully decorated in pale peach and cream, with stars sprinkled on the blue sky ceiling – was a hazardous hot-spot because of the Wi-Fi and radiation-reflecting metal frame. I whipped that metal frame out of there. I couldn’t even bring myself to give it to anyone and thrust it into the recycling bin.

I was also shocked when the cordless portable phone sent the detector off the scale. Haven’t we lived happily with these for years?

Then testing a friend’s microwave oven was a jolt! Backing up from it, to see how far the radiation extended, I crossed her kitchen floor and almost fell down the stairs. The detector was still blaring at 25 feet (nearly 8 meters). She had known that microwaves carry health risks, so she always stood back when it was on – but not 25 feet away!

Being green at heart we had been replacing light bulbs with compact fluorescents. Guess what? Yes, they are energy-efficient but emit ‘dirty electricity’ (and then there’s the mercury!) My husband protested, “Do you know how much energy they save?” I decided to wait to give him the news about the electric hybrid car. (You got it: sitting so close to the powerful unshielded electric battery.)

Quite honestly, I found it a lot to take in, so I understand if you are feeling overwhelmed. Like me, you may go through flashes (just what some of us don’t need – more hot flashes!) of disbelief, outrage or guilt. However, I did go from being duped to determined and resolved to use my skills as a health educator to alert others. I have been working steadily ever since; sometimes inspired; often discouraged at people’s unwillingness to look at this.

So, thank you for reading this and maybe passing along this message to people you care about – brains worth saving.