February 05, 2016 3 min read

According to Statistics Canada, over 80% of Canadian households have at least one active Cell Phone. The rise in Cell Phone use over the last decade has been accompanied by a decline in the use of landlines: about a quarter of households use Cell Phones exclusively.

It is both inevitable and necessary that over the last five or six years, scientists have been debating the question: does Cell Phone radiation cause cancer? Numerous studies have been done, and the results fall on both sides of the fence. Some researchers have found a correlation between Cell Phone use and the development of a tumour called brain glioma. Others have concluded that there is no evidence of a definitive relationship.

But there was a time when researchers said that about cigarettes. As recently as five decades ago, everybody smoked. Not only was it accepted, it was, in some circumstances, recommended by doctors.

Now, not everybody smokes, but everybody uses Cell Phones, and as neurosurgeon Dr. Keith Black has pointed out, it could take decades for us to see the effects of Cell Phone radiation. Maybe Cell Phones really are as safe as some scientists believe, or maybe we will see an epidemic of brain cancer in senior citizens thirty years from now. No matter what the studies now are saying, the reality is that we need more data to really understand the effects, and the only thing that will provide us with that data is the passage of time.

But what do we do while we are waiting for time to tick by? Cell Phones are so much a part of our lives. They are rapidly becoming our primary communication device. We use them to call for tow trucks when our car breaks down, to call home from the grocery store to find out if we have to pick up bread, to arrange – and sometimes conduct – job interviews. In many families, kids are given Cell Phones.

That, of course, is part of the concern. In Canada, most kids get Cell Phones when they are around 12 years of age. They are still growing, and as their brains develop, their cells are dividing much faster. It makes sense to believe that if there is a detrimental effect of radiation from Cell Phones, this effect would be far more pronounced in children.

The potential danger is recognized and acknowledged by Cell Phone manufacturers, who recommend against putting Cell Phones directly to the ear. The City of San Francisco, among others, has pushed for radiation warning labels on Cell Phones, and the European Environmental Agency wants more studies to be conducted, using more subjects and stricter controls, and lasting for longer periods of time.

In the meantime, there is a growing market for tools like headsets and earpieces, which reduce the necessity for holding the phone to the ear. These days, most Smartphones also come with built-in speakerphones. That reduces the risk, but the reality is that everyone has those times when they have to make a call or answer their phone when they don’t have a headset handy, or when the environment is not conducive to a speakerphone. Aires Technologies has a number of radiation protection products that can help ensure the safety of you and your children until we know more about whether radiation from Cell Phones causes cancer.

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