Can I Get Cancer From My Cellular Phone?


Cell phones are a necessity for many of us. Each year, it seems like our phones play a more important role in our lives. But are they safe? From what we know now, yes, they're safe. But, more research is being done to make sure. Here's what we know.

How they work

Cell phones send and receive data by using radiofrequency radiation. We call it "RF radiation." It's a type of energy wave. These waves go back and forth between your phone and nearby cellular towers. You're exposed to them when you use your phone.

Isn't radiation bad for me?

But wait, isn't radiation a bad thing? Well, although it sounds scary, RF radiation isn't like gamma rays, x-rays or UV radiation. Those have high energy waves. They can damage the DNA in your cells, which is what causes cancer. RF radiation has low energy waves. And, the RF radiation sent and received by your cell phone is very weak. For the most part, agencies researching cancer and cell phones say evidence of a link is limited. They say more research is needed to understand long-term effects.


Scientists believe cell phone use is safe. But if you're worried, take a few simple steps to reduce your exposure to RF radiation from cell phones. Use the speaker mode or an earpiece while talking. Limit your time on the phone. And, you can check with phone manufacturers to find models that give off the lowest levels of radiation.