Published: Sat, December 16, 2017
Medicine | By Brett Sutton

Cell phone health concerns addressed by California Department of Public Health

Cell phone health concerns addressed by California Department of Public Health

According to a warning issued this week by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) against cellphone radiation, these devices are leaking hazardous electromagnetic radiation, because of which people must decrease the use of cell phones and also keep their distance when possible, TechCrunch is reporting.

Although the scientific community has not reached a consensus on the risks of cell phone use, research suggests long-term, high use may impact human health.

This year's guidelines are more detailed than the draft version, but the department said that the court ruling had nothing to do with the decision to release them this year. The department itself admits the link is not conclusive.

Although the science is still evolving, there are concerns among some public health professionals and members of the public regarding long-term, high use exposure to the energy emitted by cellphones.

"It's clear that there are people who are concerned", she said. Until this information is publicly available, taking steps to lower exposure to wireless radiation is prudent.

She said small changes such as keeping your phone out of your pocket and storing it away from your bed at night can help reduce exposure. On Wednesday, months after a judge administered the office had to, the CDPH discharged an arrangement of rules.

The guidelines also warn against a common habit for those who also use their device as an alarm clock - sleeping next to your cell phone.


The current guidelines are a bit more extensive than the 2015 draft, including more steps on how to avoid radio frequency exposure. The primary fear was that the non-ionizing radiation would penetrate human cells and raise the risk for certain cancers.

Moskowitz said the move is long overdue. A national industry group, CTIA -The Wireless Association, sued in federal court, characterizing the mandatory warnings as "ill-informed and misleading" and arguing that the ordinance violates retailers' First Amendment rights by forcing them to proclaim a message with which they disagree.

According to the FCC however, there is now no national standard developed for safety limits, even though the agency requires cell phone manufacturers to ensure all phones comply with "objective limits for safe exposure".

The main piece of advice issued by the authority is to keep the phone away from your body.

"The Federal Communications Commission monitors scientific research on a regular basis, and its standard for RF exposure is based on recommended guidelines adopted by US and global standard-setting bodies". The safest way to use one's phone is when it's connected to Wi-Fi.

Sammy Caiola is Healthcare Reporter at Capital Public Radio in Sacramento.

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