Society & Culture

Why You Should Opt-Out of Airport Body Scanners

It’s important for people to realize that they do have a choice when traveling.

Lance Schuttler, The Mind Unleashed
Waking Times Media

Recently I was traveling and needed to fly to and from my destination, which required me to visit my local airport. Instead of passing through the body scanner, I told the TSA agent standing there that I was “opting out.”

Earlier this year I was told by someone that I should consider “opting out” of the body scanner, as a way to protect my health. I have since done that each time I traveled by plane and this most recent time was no different.

As I stood there waiting to walk through the gate (and not the body scanner) with the TSA agent, I saw person after person walking through the body scanner, almost in robotic fashion.

“I wonder if more people would choose to opt-out if knew about the possible negative side effects to the human body that the body scanner can create,” I thought to myself.

Millimeter Wave Radiation

Millimeter wave technology heats the skin because of the frequencies that create atomic motion within the cells. Essentially, it microwaves the skin.

An argument might be though that the radiation only occurs for a couple seconds. However, a report published by ProPublica said that these machines “violate a long-standing principle in radiation safety-that humans shouldn’t be X-rayed unless there is a medical benefit.”

Additionally, a World Health Organization report revealed that this technology causes eye damage and can cause cancer.


Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico
found that high-frequency terahertz waves (THz), which are emitted from the millimeter wave body scanners “unzip double-stranded DNA, creating bubbles in the double strand that could significantly interfere with processes such as gene expression and DNA replication.”

Further research from the Foundation For Advancement in Cancer Therapy shows, Low levels (below 10 mW/cm2) of NIR (non-ionizing radiation) have been found to produce many adverse health effects in animals including temporary sterility, genetic changes, and changes in the transmission of nerve impulses.”

Realizing You Do Have A Choice

It’s important for people to realize that they do have a choice when traveling. The process is very easy and I’ve never been asked any questions from TSA agents why I chose to opt out.

  • Simply state to the TSA agent when waiting in line “I am opting out.” They will say okay and call for an agent of the same sex to escort you through the gate.
  • You’ll have the choice for a private or public screening.
  • The agent will simply use their hands for a “pat down” so to speak.
  • It takes only about a minute.
  • I’ve personally never felt uncomfortable and each agent was very professional.

Take the information in this article as you wish. I encourage those who are wanting to live as healthy as possible to “opt out” from the body scanner at airports, and if you are still skeptical, continue to do more research until you’ve arrived at a decision you are comfortable with.


This article (Why You Should Opt-Out of Airport Body Scanners) was originally created and published by The Mind Unleashed and is re-posted here with permission. 

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