Over the years, Bluetooth technology has changed the way we use mobile phones. Today, it has given us the liberty to enjoy our phones with both our hands being free.
It has given us the ability to transfer files wirelessly too. In addition to this, it has allowed us to get rid of dangly wires that can easily get ripped apart as we move.
Bluetooth technology has many practical applications especially when driving. It also improved our entertainment as we can hook Bluetooth devices to a computer, TV, and other devices.
But is Bluetooth radiation dangerous? It is important to take a closer look at the big picture at this point considering the rampant use of Bluetooth technology in our lives.
There are many experts today who claim that radiation from our mobile phones is dangerous. As for Bluetooth radiation, there are also those “experts” who claim that Bluetooth radiation is safe despite the lacking research on this technology’s effect on our health.
There was a study in 2016 centered on Antarctic Krill and discovered that their navigation can be disrupted even by exceptionally weak radio-frequency fields. There are also similar findings discovered on insects. According to the study, there has been an increase in insect cell death after exposure to radio frequency fields as well. This suggests that radiation, including Bluetooth, could potentially be harmful.
Different Classes of Bluetooth
To give you a clearer picture, let’s take a closer look at Bluetooth radiation. There are different types of Bluetooth out there. Bluetooth transmits at 2.4 GHz frequency but there are three types of Bluetooth classes. And this will most likely give you an idea how much Bluetooth radiation you are exposed to.
- Class 1 Transmitters– This type of Bluetooth technology is the most powerful and could range up to 100 meters. Its transmission power could reach 100 milliwatts.
- Class 2 Transmitters– This type of Bluetooth has a range of 10 meters and is usually the one found in mobile devices. It has a power of 2.5 milliwatts.
- Class 3 Transmitters– Lastly, you have this type of Bluetooth which is considered the weakest and can only operate less than 10 meters. It only has a peak transmission power of 1 milliwatt.
Usually, if you want the Bluetooth device with the lowest EMF, you want to pick class 3. You shouldn’t be confusing Bluetooth class with version. The version will only pertain to the type of software that is being used by the Bluetooth device. As rule of thumb, the higher the version, the faster the data speed.
Mobile Phone Radiation vs. Bluetooth Radiation
Until today, the effects of radiation coming from your phone are still hotly debated. In fact, there are those experts saying that there’s bias in the studies. According to the Food and Drug Administration, the studies have yet to show solid evidence that there is such thing as an association between radiofrequency exposure and health problems.
And this sentiment is echoed by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention as well as the Federal Communications Commission.
Now, if you are going to compare the amount of radiation produced by Bluetooth to your phone, Bluetooth devices are far less powerful. Phones need to transmit the signal using an antenna and could reach the antenna by how many kilometers. On the other hand, you have Bluetooth classes that can only transmit for only less than 10 meters. Bluetooth is one thousand times less powerful than the radiation your phone emits. And considering the findings of different agencies, it goes to show that Bluetooth radiation is far less of a threat.
Should You Still Be Worried About Bluetooth?
Now, there are still those who would still argue that regulatory agencies should take a closer look at Bluetooth radiation. Regulatory agencies are focusing on the non-ionizing aspects of Bluetooth radiation in saying that it doesn’t pose any danger to the body.
However, there could still be an impact on the human body considering that we function bio-electrically and biochemically. And also electromagnetic field can also trigger stress response according to some experts in the field.
There are those bolder claims saying that Bluetooth technology could actually have an effect on the body that it can increase the risk to depression, brain tumors, and sleep issues and more.
The premise is that Bluetooth technology is still radio frequency. And what it can do is it can still potentially change the cell structure and make us more at risk to developing these conditions.
Even the World Health Organization is not closing its doors to this possibility. In fact, it has labeled radio frequency radiation as a possibly carcinogenic.
Question on What is Considered Safe
Though agencies consider Bluetooth’s radiation as safe, there are those questioning whether the safe levels are actually safe. They also claim that Bluetooth’s radio frequency is also known as microwave radiation. According to their claim, Microwave frequencies have a short wavelength and fires at a rapid rate of 2.4 billion times per second.
For instance, Bluetooth technology that can fit around the ear can radiate around 0.23 watts per kilogram. This level is already considered a health risk.
There are even those who claim that this level is already enough to make the blood-brain barrier “leaky”. The radiation of around 0.012 to 0.002 watts per kilogram is already enough to cause neuron death.
Ways on How To Minimize Radiation Exposure
So what exactly can you do? We are too reliant on our phones to not have it around. Here are some of the most useful tips that you can go for.
1. Turn off your WiFi, Data, and Bluetooth
If you put your phone on Airplane mode, you are basically shut down from the rest of the world. If you are too afraid that you might miss an important call, what you want instead is to turn off your data, WiFi and your Bluetooth. What it does is turn off all the antennas. Basically, the phone simply radiates if you are receiving a text or a call.
2. Make Use of Speaker Phone
You want to just use speaker phone if you are going to make or receive a call. What it does is you don’t have to put your phone near your head.
3. Limit the time that you use your phone
Next, you also want to limit the exposure to your phone itself. Maybe, you want to just check your phone every hour instead of staying with your phone the entire day. This way, you will be able to just see if there are messages or if there is anyone that you have to call back. Another alternative is to simply stick to landline or even make use of your computer for communication.
4. Don’t use Bluetooth headsets
Between wired and wireless headsets, choose a wired option. What it does is minimize the radiation that you are exposed to. Also, to even minimize the exposure from your phone, you can choose to just download songs and play it after. Spotify allows you to use the app even offline.
5. Put the phone on Airplane mode every once in a while
There are instances when you can’t receive a call or even a text. For instance, if your family and friends know that you are at work, you can just leave your office number so that they will just call you if it is really important. Also, you can place your phone on Airplane mode and minimize your exposure to radiation.
At this point, there is no conclusive study to link Bluetooth technology to being a health risk. The technology is still quite new. And researchers still haven’t presented a strong case suggesting that we should worry about it. What we are saying is that you shouldn’t throw your Bluetooth devices out the window just yet.
But of course, considering the small dose of radiation that we get on Bluetooth, there is a possibility that the effects could actually appear in the next years to come. There is a chance that the effects are negligible that we are going to feel it in the coming years.
Now, are you willing to take the risk and continue using your phone the way you do today? Are you still going to use Bluetooth devices and simply worry about it later if it really is a health risk? Or maybe, you are going to play it safe and just minimize your exposure to Bluetooth and even mobile phone radiation?
There is always the chance that agencies will recalibrate what they call safe levels of exposure to radiation in the future. If you want to play it safe, follow the five simple steps on how to minimize your exposure to both mobile phone and Bluetooth radiation.