There are ways you can optimize your sleeping environment to create the perfect circumstances for rest. We all know drinking caffeine before bedtime is not great, but what about placing your cell phone under your pillow? Is it good or bad?
Several studies have been conducted to answer this question, but there is no definitive answer. However, many studies suggest that it’s better to avoid keeping your phone under your pillow.
The International Agency for Research on Cancer has classified mobile phone radiofrequency waves as possibly carcinogenic to humans.
This means that there is some evidence that radiofrequency waves from mobile phones could cause cancer in humans. However, more research is needed to be sure of this.
The power (and hence the radiofrequency exposure to a user) falls off rapidly with increasing distance from the handset.
A hands-free device that keeps the mobile phone away from your head and body will expose you to fewer radiofrequency waves.
In addition, limiting the number and length of calls will also reduce your exposure.
Airlines and some hospitals also prohibit using mobile phones due to the potential interference of radiofrequency signals with specific medical devices and navigation systems.
Is It Bad To Keep Your Cell Phone Near You At Night?
Mobile phones emit radiofrequency (RF) waves and electromagnetic radiation. RF waves are low-frequency waves, so they don’t have enough energy to damage DNA or cells directly.
However, some studies suggest long-term exposure to RF waves might be harmful. Due to some evidence, World Health Organization warned that using a cell phone close to your body could lead to brain damage, cancer, and other health concerns.
Sleeping with your phone under your pillow is a bad idea for several reasons:
- You risk damaging your phone.
- It could overheat and catch fire.
- EMF radiation is hazardous to your health.
If your cell phone is kept in your bed, it can also make you more likely to use your phone while you sleep. You might be tempted to check your social media, text messages, receive calls or read your emails as you drift off to sleep.
You may regularly check your phone for different reasons. If you are doing so for long periods, you may be putting yourself at risk of developing mild symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Read also: Is a kindle OK to read before bed?
The Dangers Of Electromagnetic Radiation
Sleeping with your cell phone nearby may expose you to harmful radiation. Some experts believe cell phone use emits electromagnetic radiation, which can negatively affect your health, especially your brain.
Although it is not yet known if there is a connection between cell phone radiation and brain cancer or brain tumors, experts advise against sleeping with your cell phone under your pillow or close to your head.
The EMF emissions from cell phones are just low-intensity radio waves. While we are constantly exposed to these waves (from microwaves, electronic devices, and WiFi), the increased proximity to cell phones has raised concerns.
While the jury is still out on the dangers of EMF exposure, some severe effects that have been linked include:
- DNA damage in the brain.
- Interference with sleep (poor quality of sleep).
- Increased brain cancer risk.
- More radiation causes disruptions in your internal clock and circadian rhythms. Because the blue light waves are close to those of daylight, our brains can think it is still daytime even when it is not. This can make it harder to fall asleep.
Read also: Is it bad to have a TV in your bedroom?
What You Can Do To Reduce Exposure
You can take several simple steps to reduce exposure to radiofrequency fields from mobile phones:
- Use a hands-free device.
- Limit the length of calls.
- Avoid making calls when the signal is weak, as this will result in the phone emitting more power.
- Send text messages instead of making calls, when possible.
- Use a wired headset instead of a wireless one.
- Use sleep mode or turn your phone off completely at night.
- Do not use your mobile phone while it is charging.
- Do not carry your phone in your pocket or close to your body.
- Do not sleep with your mobile phone under your pillow or on your bedside table.
- Pregnant women and young children should limit their exposure to radiofrequency fields from mobile phones as a precautionary measure.
Are There Any Health Risks Associated With Using A Mobile Phone?
There is no clear evidence that mobile phone use causes health risks. However, more research is needed better to understand the potential risks of cell phone use.
Given the popularity of mobile phones and the lack of data for mobile phone use over long periods, World Health Organization has promoted further research on this topic.
Several studies investigating potential health effects in children and adolescents are underway.
In the meantime, WHO recommends that people take simple precautions to minimize their exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields, such as using hands-free devices or texting instead of talking whenever possible.
Possible Health Effects
Some studies have suggested a possible link. The main concern is brain tumors since people are often exposed to radiofrequency waves from mobile phones held close to the head.
A large, international study (the INTERPHONE study) is currently underway to help clarify any possible risks.
There is limited evidence that exposure to radiofrequency fields from mobile phones may cause non-cancerous tumors of the brain or salivary gland.
Research on possible reproductive effects from exposure to radiofrequency fields from mobile phones is ongoing. Some studies have suggested an increased risk for sperm damage, but the evidence is still inconclusive.
There is no firm evidence that mobile phone use causes any neurological effects, such as brain tumors, headaches, or memory loss.
Good Things About Having Your Phone Under Your Pillow
Keeping your mobile phones under the pillows while sleeping can have its upsides too. For example, using an app for meditation can be very helpful. Meditation apps are designed to help you relax and focus on your breathing.
This can be advantageous for people who have trouble sleeping due to anxiety and stress. Additionally, it has been suggested that having your phone under your pillow can help you improve your memory, as the low EMF emitted by the device can improve your blood flow.
Things To Consider Before Keeping Mobile Phones Under the Pillow
- Place your phone out of reach. The best thing to do is to keep your phone out of reach. This way, you will not be tempted to pick it up while you sleep.
- Lower the EMF exposure by using airplane mode. The airplane mode will turn off the wireless connection and reduce EMF exposure.
- Place it face down on your nightstand. Keeping phones close to the head cause health issue.
- Use a radiation blocking case. Although you should not be sleeping with your phone, you can use a radiation blocking case to reduce the effects of electromagnetic exposure, especially if you need to have your phone close because of an alarm.
Choose a different place to charge your phone. Instead of plugging your phone into a charging station near your bed, plug it into a wall socket in another room.
Conclusion: Can I keep My Phone Under My Pillow?
Keeping your phone under your pillow might cause some serious consequences. If you must keep your phone close while sleeping, consider investing in a Faraday cage or an anti-radiation case to help mitigate the effects of EMF radiation.
Taking these precautions will help to minimize your exposure to EMF radiation and potentially harmful health effects.