'

Are you worried that your cellphone is harming you?

I've had a cellphone for well over 15 years now and not a week goes by where I don't come across a study or report that suggests that using (or sometimes even just holding) my cellphone is in one way or another causing me harm. Are you worried that your cellphone is harming you?

I've had a cellphone for well over 15 years now and not a week goes by where I don't come across a study or report that suggests that using (or sometimes even just holding) my cellphone is in one way or another causing me harm.

Are you worried that your cellphone is harming you?

[poll id="483"]

Despite all the reports and studies, I feel that there's very little science behind much of what is said. I'm not surprised by that given that any time there's any sort of widespread liability issue that even touches on big business, there's a vested interest in keeping everything as muddy and unclear as possible. Most reports I've read which suggest that cellphone usage is bad for us seem to be filled with menacing words such as "radiation", "tumors" and "cancer" but the actual science seems flimsy at best. Even safety standards, which have become tougher over time, feel arbitrary and wishy-washy.

Then there's changing technology to contend with. I've might have been using a cellphone for 15 years, but the cellphone I'm using today is a very different beast to the one I had a decade and a half ago. It's not as though we've all been popping the same pill for all that time.

Safety advice also seems vague. There seems to be a general consensus amongst advisory authorities (particularly in Europe) that cellphones should be kept away from the body (Where? How far away?), that a hands-free kit should be used (kinda makes sense) and that if you are going to use a cellphone in a car for an extended period that you should use an external antenna (What about indoors where reception can be poorer than in a car?).

The government does have plans for a test where lab mice will undergo high exposed to GSM and CDMA over extended periods, but this project doesn't begin until next year and results will take several years to appear. Might prove to be useful in the long term but for now it's of little use.

So, what do we do in the meantime? Well, I guess not walking around with a cellphone permanently glued to your ear is probably a good idea. Probably not having it in your pocket the whole time near your vitals is also probably a sensible move. Beyond that, I'm more concerned about the dangers from the battery going up in flames or the screen breaking.

I hope I'm right ...

How do you use your cellphone? Do you worry about the risks of using it?