Pregnant women who use a mobile (cell) phone are more likely to have a child who has behavioural problems. The risk increases if the child starts using a phone in its early developmental years.

Children who were exposed to mobile phones while they were in the womb, and who used one themselves, are 50 per cent more likely to have behavioural problems. The greatest harm is done when the mother uses a phone before the child is born, say researchers, which accounts for a 40 per cent increased risk.

The Danish National Birth Cohort study based their findings on a group of around 100,000 women who were pregnant between 1996 and 2002 and who were questioned again seven years later.

The researchers say the findings are in line with earlier research, and that they have taken into account other possible causes of behavioural problems.

(Source: Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 2010; doi: 10.1136/jech.2010.115402).

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