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Cell Phone Dangers




Background Information

Ever since the first decade of cell phone usage, scientists have been struggling to study the possible effects of it being a contribution to brain cancer. The two most common types of brain tumors are glioma and meningioma. Even though scientists and doctors are still studying cell phones nowadays and the short history behind them, the scientists and doctors have various possible explanations of why the use of cell phones can lead to these types of brain cancer.

Cell Phone Usage Today

The primary reason why scientists and many people believe that cell phones may cause cancer is because the amount of people that use cell phones now is more than the amount of people that have used them ever before. "According to the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association; In 2010, for every 100 people, about 76.2 of them were cell phone users. Scientists estimate the global number of cell phone subscriptions to be about 5 billion" (pr208_E.pdf) and if cell phone usage is as big of a deal as scientists and doctors make it seem, could you imagine 5 billion cell phone users with brain cancer? Not only has the amount of cell phone subscriptions gone up, but the amount of phone calls and length of each call has also increased. Cell phone use didn't begin in the United States until 1983 and it wasn't even popular until the 90's. The lack of history behind cell phones is the reason why it is so difficult for scientists to study the possible effects of cancer behind the cell phones that we use on a daily basis for communication. Because it is so difficult to obtain this information, how do we as everyday cell phone users know if we are harming ourselves or not?

How Cell Phone Usage Can Possibly be Harmful

Cell phones give off strong radio waves, which is a form of radiation. When you make a phone call on your cell phone, your phone connects to the nearest base station (where it gets reception). The further away your phone is from the nearest base station, that's the more power, energy, and radiation your phone utilizes and that you are exposed to and the more often you are exposed to these vast amounts of energy, the higher the risk of you possibly getting brain cancer. Not only is your physical distance from a base station a factor, but other factors are the number of phone calls and how long you talk over a period of time, whether it's days at a time, months, weeks, or even years. It also depends on the age of the person. Teens and kids are more likely to get cancer due to cell phone usage because their skulls are thinner than adults' skulls. Not only if the person is too young, but if the person is too elderly and they use the phone too frequently, they are at risk as well because their skulls tend to be weaker. Even though there are many factors to there being a possible risk of brain cancer, there are also ways that we can reduce that risk.

Ways to Prevent Harm from Cell Phone Usage

To reduce the possible risk of brain cancer amongst cell phone users, several things can be done. Cell phone users can try their best to cut conversations short. If the conversation isn't very important, text messaging could be an option, but let's say the person doesn't have text messaging on their phone. Then they can call the person they need to call and put it on speakerphone. The further away the phone is from your head, the better, but let's say the conversation is private and there are people around. This is where hands free devices such as Bluetooths come in. With Bluetooths, you can put your phone in a bag or set it down and move around while still having the ability to hold a conversation without holding the actual phone up to your head and still have privacy. The only problem with that is when you're using a Bluetooth in public and people don't see the Bluetooth at first, they’ll think you're talking to yourself. Here’s one more suggestion. When you're at home and you need make a call, use a home phone rather than your cell phone all the time. Cell phones have become so popular that some people don't even own house phones anymore, but they don't realize that owning a landline can be more beneficial for their health. The links between cell phones, radiation, and brain cancer are still under investigation, but with the possibility of getting brain cancer someday, you can never be too careful.