Raise awareness of environmental health issues in order to better protect our children and future generations.

11 August 2014

Cordless Phones: Even More Dangerous Than Cell Phones?

This article discusses the risk of exposure to cordless phone radiation and alternative ways to reduce the risk of harm including the eco-DECT phone made by Siemens.

Cordless Phones: Even More Dangerous Than Cell Phones?
Posted by Lloyd Burrell, electricsense.com, 14 July 2010

If you thought you could solve the problem of cell phone radiation by switching back to your landline phone and your landline is a cordless phone, think again. Studies show that cordless phones emit radiation just the same as cell phones.

In some cases cordless phones are more dangerous than cell phones.

Most cordless phones use DECT (Digital European Cordless Telephone) technology. The handset and the base of the phone, emit pulsed microwave radiation.

Cancer Link With Cordless Phone Radiation

Research from Swedish scientists concludes that cordless phones raise the risk of developing cancer. After evaluating malignant brain tumor patients’ usage of cell phones vs. their usage of cordless phones, they found the cancer risk was multiplied for those who used DECT cordless phones and combining the two made the risk even higher.

Another problem is the radiation levels. In some cases the radiation from a DECT cordless phone base is higher than the radiation levels found near a cell phone tower.

The third problem is that most cordless phones emit radiation from the handset, as well as the base, at full power, even when the phone isn’t in use.

Watch my short video on cordless phone radiation to better understand what I’m talking about.

The radiation from the DECT cordless handset and/or charger sends emissions throughout your entire house–all the time.

Cell Phone Dangers Bring Cordless Phone Radiation Into The Limelight

We’ve always loved the idea of being able to talk to one another across distances. Tin cans attached to a long string were once used to communicate. In the 19th century we graduated to the telephone, ever since then have been refining and reinventing the “talking telegraph”.

Anyone older than forty remembers when all telephones had a cord attached to them, thus grounding them to the incoming telephone line–it was a cumbersome but effective. You might remember using extra-long phone lines to connect your phone to the jack so you could roam about your house. Even that was pretty liberating.

When the cordless phone came into being in the 1980s there was no going back. They quickly became the household norm.

In a matter of a very few years we went from relatively low power, low frequency analog cordless phones to high power, higher frequency (some of the new phones operate at 5.8 Gigahertz) pulsed radiation DECT models. Because telephone advances happened faster than we could understand the relationship between their radiation levels and cancer risk, cordless phones weren’t viewed as a health problem. Not until cell phone use brought the risk of brain cancer to light.

Is Cordless Phone Radiation Worse Than Cell Phone Radiation?

Yes, it is in some circumstances. With EMFs, proximity to the source (of the EMFs) and length of exposure are two very important factors.

Do you go to bed at night with your head just a few inches from a DECT cordless phone base? If you do you are exposing yourself to significant levels of cordless phone radiation, just at the time of day when your body is the most vulnerable. This is the worst type of cordless phone radiation exposure.

Neither DECT cordless phones nor cell phones are good for you in terms of radiation exposure, and certainly not in combination. It would be wisest to follow the advice of respected Harley Street physician Dr. David Dowson, “having a cordless phone is like having a mobile mast in your house. I’d recommend anyone who has one to switch to a plug-in phone.”

How To Reduce Your Exposure

Throw away your cordless phone and go back to using a corded phone. Problem solved!

It’s that easy. But is it? I know you’re listening to what I am saying here, but are you really ready for to take this step?

Don’t feel guilty when you answer this. If I hadn’t experienced electrical sensitivity I’d probably have a cordless phone just like everyone else.

Here’s what you can do to minimize your EMF exposure and feel a little less guilty:

Unplug your cordless phone at night (that’s to say remove the plug from the electric socket on the wall) AND remove the handsets from areas where you spend time – even unplugged, charged handsets can still emit EMFs (handset seeking to connect with the base) until the battery has run down

Put the base of your cordless phone at least 6 feet away from where you spend any significant amount of time (remember EMFs travel through walls)

Plug your cordless phone in only when you use it. You might need to plug it in an hour or two before, but once charged most DECTs have 4 or 5 days autonomy

Keep your conversations short and use the speakerphone function when you can so that you keep it away from your head as much as possible

Have at least one corded phone in your home, so if you do disconnect your cordless phones you’ve still got a phone to use

Are Low Radiation Eco Cordless Phones The Solution To Cordless Phone Radiation?

If you really can’t live without your cordless phone then better to get a low EMF or eco-DECT cordless model. Low EMF DECT cordless phones like the Siemens Gigaset Cordless Phone still emit radiation but they have advantages. Here’s what the Gigaset website has to say:

“Like all Gigaset cordless phones, it variably reduces the transmitting power from the handset to base station depending on their distance apart. You can also reduce the transmitting power of the Gigaset C610H’s base station by 80% simply by selecting the ECO Mode. Furthermore, radiation-free ECO Mode Plus turns off the transmitting power when the phone is in standby.”

I recently purchased a Siemens Gigaset cordless phone. I can confirm that they do not emit radiation when on standby.

BUT this function does need configuring. That’s to say, the model that I received, when I took it out of the box it was operating like a normal DECT cordless phone and emitting EMFs. I was able to test this with my radio frequency (RF) meter.

Low EMF Corded Phone – Better For your Health?

Even though a long telephone wire is a cumbersome mess, my advice is – play safe. Being tethered to your land line phone jack is a small price to pay for long term improved health.

If you are hesitating replacing your cordless DECT phone with a corded phone, don’t hesitate any longer. Using a low EMF corded phone (thats to say a model which has an inbuilt speakerphone and jack, for corded headset, prefer “airtube” version) will reduce your EMF exposures significantly. A basic model will suffice for most people, but more sophisticated corded telephones (no ear phone jack on this one) are also available with answering machine.

Another alternative is to try and find an old analog cordless phone not as safe as a corded phone but considered much safer than the DECT technology – works at a lower frequency – the EMFs are not pulsed.

Have You Got The Message?

Did you ‘get’ that if you use your DECT cordless phone near its base your exposures are higher? They’re higher because you’re exposing yourself to a double dose of EMFs. You get zapped with the radiation from the phone AND from the base unit.

Do you and your family a favor deal with your cordless phone radiation today.


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