Science digest: Cell phone radiation- threat or no threat

What is radiation?

In a nutshell, radiation is energy that’s travelling through space in the form of waves or particles.
occurs naturally and has always been around, we’ve evolved with it and we’re bombarded with it in one form or another every day of our lives – from the earth, from space and even within our own bodies.

experts suggest a little radiation is a good thing and we all know of its uses in medical science to combat and diagnose some illnesses.


Radiation and your mobile

type of radiation emitted from mobile phones is electromagnetic radiation. It’s present in mobiles because they use radio frequency (RF) waves to make and receive calls.

phone radiation doses are considered to be very small as the emissions are low power (short range). nevertheless, there are ways in which you can reduce exposure to these waves.


What are the dangers of mobile phones?

 extensive research on the subject, there has been no conclusive evidence that using a mobile phone causes long term harmful effects in humans.

The pace of mobile phone technology is advancing at a far quicker pace than the research required into the potential harm they can cause; much more research is needed (and is being undertaken) before we can know for certain the effects they have on human health.


Studies have shown that exposure to the RF waves emitted from mobiles can cause:

  • Raised blood pressure at the time of use, pressure returning to normal when use is stopped (to put this into perspective, our blood pressure changes regularly throughout the day and is even affected by tasks such as speaking)
  • Direct brain warming after prolonged use, which disperses as soon as you stop using your phone and causes no harm
  • Mild fatigue after prolonged use
  • A recent study in Sweden suggested that acoustic neuromas (benign tumours of the acoustic nerve) are twice as common in mobile phone users than in those who do not use mobiles. 

There is no evidence that using a mobile phone causes:

Tumours, impairment, cancer, brain damage

The health risk is considered to be very, very small, although some individuals may be more susceptible to radiation than others. 

Whilst it’s true that excessive exposure to RF waves causes heat to be generated, the spoof claims you may have heard about being able to cook an egg using a mobile phone are entirely false.
Nevertheless, mobiles do emit low doses of radiation so common sense dictates that precaution should be taken when using them.

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