The best method of cell phone radiation protection is to keep the phone as far from the body as possible while it is turned on. Keeping calls short as well as making them from good reception areas will also reduce exposure. Texting requires shorter bursts of radiation than talking and puts more distance between a person's body and the phone. When shopping for a new phone, individuals should be sure to research how much power each model puts out. Frequent cell phone users should also utilize a headset and the built-in speakerphone to keep the handset at a distance.
Many inconclusive studies have been performed regarding cell phone radiation protection. No one is sure how much of this type of radiation is really safe. Major concerns include its effect on children, as well as on cancer formation and growth. It may also have some effect on cognitive ability, sleep and fertility. Using a cell phone against the head does heat the outer and inner layers of your skin, forcing the body to compensate.
The rate at which the human body absorbs microwaves from cell phones is called the Specific Absorption Rate (SAR). It is measured in watts per kilogram of weight (W/kg) and is regulated by agencies in the US and Europe. Over a gram of tissue, the US limits average exposure to 1.6 W/kg. In Europe, the maximum exposure is 2 W/kg over 10 grams of tissue. Due to the tissue volume difference, it is not useful to compare US and European SAR numbers directly.
Cell phone manufacturers are required to provide a SAR estimate for each phone model. They usually don't provide this information when someone purchases a phone, however. It can be found through the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). With the FCC identification numbers from an individual cell phone, the site will show the phone's SAR. Purchasing a phone with the lowest possible SAR is another good method of cell phone radiation protection.
The most important time for cell phone radiation protection is during an actual phone call when a phone emits the most radiation. People can avoid pressing the phone against their heads or playing with its antenna. Headsets keep the phone away from the brain, but a holster or belt clip just moves the radiation down to the waist. Wired headsets are probably safer than wireless ones because they are not transmitting any sort of signal next to the head. Some studies suggest placing a ferrite bead on the headset wire near the phone to prevent radio waves from traveling up the wire.
A cell phone automatically adjusts its power output to try to compensate for poor reception areas. Many so-called electromagnetic field (EMF) protection devices interfere with cell phone operation. This often causes the phone to transmit at maximum power, which defeats the purpose of the EMF protection device.
Another good means of cell phone radiation protection is to avoid using a signal booster unless the antenna and amplifier are far from the body. It is better to mount them in a car trunk or on the roof of a recreational vehicle rather than just above a person's head. The wireless antenna in a laptop, plug-in wireless card or home network router is similar to a cell phone antenna. A person can limit exposure by disabling the wireless systems in these devices when she is not using them. Individuals should be aware that many wireless home phones also use microwaves to connect the handset to the base unit.