Experts advise setting the phone to airplane mode while not in use, which disables cellular, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth. Instead of holding the phone up to your head when talking on the phone, experts advocate utilizing the speaker feature or a headset.
In a recent study, UC Berkeley researchers analyzed data from 46 research studies from around the world and discovered that using a mobile phone for more than 1,000 hours, or approximately 17 minutes per day, during a ten-year period was linked to a 60% increased risk of tumors.
Joel Moskowitz, the director of the Center for Family and Community Health with the UC Berkeley School of Public Health lead the study in partnership with Korea’s National Cancer Center, and Seoul National University. Their research looked at data from case control studies in 16 nations, including the United States, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Japan, Korea, and New Zealand.
“Cell phone use highlights a host of public health issues and it has received little attention in the scientific community, unfortunately,” said Moskowitz.
With the emergence of smartphones, cell phones have become an increasingly important component of people’s everyday lives. According to the Pew Research Center, 97 percent of Americans currently have access to a cell phone of some form.
Furthermore, an increasing number of individuals have grown to rely on their mobile phones as a primary means of communication. In fact, an increasing number of individuals are abandoning their landlines at home and depending only on their cell phone for communication.
According to the National Center for Health Statistics of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 61.8% of individuals have opted to go wireless-only. Because of the growing usage of mobile devices, there has been a lot of investigation into their possible relation to cancer. The results have been diverse and at times contentious.
The cellular phone industry has financed or partially funded several studies looking at the health concerns of mobile phone use, which skeptics claim have distorted study results.
“Moskowitz emphasized that these studies have been controversial as it is a highly sensitive political topic with significant economic ramifications for a powerful industry,” Berkeley Public Health noted.
Federal authorities’ view is based on what they claim is a lack of evidence demonstrating a direct relationship.
“To date, there is no consistent or credible scientific evidence of health problems caused by the exposure to radio frequency energy emitted by cell phones,” the Food and Drug Administration stated on its website.
The FDA also stated that the Federal Communications Commission has set a restriction on radio frequency energy that “remains acceptable for protecting public health.”
In 2017, California authorities warned the public about potential health hazards associated with cell phone usage, according to UC Berkeley researchers, however some believed the warning was insufficient.
In its alert, the California Department of Public Health said, “Although the science is still evolving, some laboratory experiments and human health studies have suggested the possibility that long-term, high use of cell phones may be linked to certain types of cancer and other health effects.”
The CDC also recommended that people keep their phones away from their bodies and carry their electronics in a backpack, briefcase, or purse to limit their exposure. Cell phones should not be kept in a pocket, bra, or belt holster, according to health experts, since the phone’s antenna attempts to stay connected to a cell tower while it is turned on, releasing radio frequency (RF) energy even when it is not in use.
When not in use, experts recommend switching the phone to airplane mode, which disables cellular, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth. When on the phone, experts recommend using the speaker feature or a headset instead of holding the phone up to your head.
Experts also advise that if there are just one or two bars displaying the level of connectivity, you should minimize or avoid using your phone. “Cell phones put out more RF energy to connect with cell towers when the signal is weak,” health officials noted.
The same is true when utilizing a mobile device in a fast-moving car, bus, or train, as the phone produces extra RF energy to maintain connections and prevent losing calls as it changes from cell tower to cell tower.
When it comes to cell phones, “distance is your friend,” according to Moskowitz. “Keeping your cellphone 10 inches away from your body, as compared to one-tenth of an inch, results in a 10,000-fold reduction in exposure,” he said.
Mobile phones have been around for decades, and in the 1980s, they were readily available to the general population. Researchers have cautioned that as individuals spend more time with their phones, the danger of health issues associated with their usage will rise. To validate the current findings, the study recommended for more in-depth research utilizing precise data on time spent on cell phones.
For more than a decade, Moskowitz has been investigating and writing on the hazards of radiation from cell phones and cell towers, and he claims that publicizing his results has repeatedly resulted in increasing requests for more research. “As soon as those stories went public in the media,” he said, “I was contacted from survivors of cell phone radiation begging me to stay on this topic.”