Cell Phones and Cancer


San Francisco recently introduced legislation that will require cellphone retailers to label their devices with the level of radiation they emit. This has been a continuing discussion in the medical community upon the safeness of cell phones. A recent study cast new doubts on any links between cellphones and the two most common types of brain disease.

This study looked at the number of incidence of glioma and meningioma from 1973 to 2003. They compared it to a study conducted from 1998 to 2003. Their conclusions showed no changes or trends of increasing incidences.

These researchers warned that this study was not conclusive and suggested more research needs to happen. It was strongly suggested that children should be restricted in the use of cellphones. The American Cancer Society states that the radio frequency emitted by cellphones are not strong enough to alter or damage DNA.

With all this conflicting information, as a consumer, what can you do:

1) The FCC limits the amount of radiation all cell phones must meet, but there are wide variations between types of cell phones. The Environmental Working Group has a website http://www.ewg.org/cellphoneradiation/Get-a-Safer-Phone?allavailable=1 that ranks the phone by the amount of radiation they release. Use this as a guide when deciding on a new phone.

2) Use a wired or wireless headset. Though cordless Bluetooth devices operate at a much lower transmission they still emit some radiation.

3) Use your speakerphone function as much as possible.

4) Don’t use cell phones for extended calls. Obviously the longer the exposure the bigger the risk. Use landlines or wired headsets for those longer conversations.

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