Headphones have become an essential part of our lives. A nice set of headphones and soothing music or other audio content can put you in a very good mood. Having a good pair of headphones can improve your productivity, keep you busy or entertained while traveling or driving or even doing chores. With the advancement of technology, more phone accessories are being invented and becoming available.
Headphones come in two forms: wired headphones and Bluetooth enabled headphones, which are commonly known as wireless headphones. With the new innovations in headphone technology, many people have asked the question, “Are wired headphones safer than Bluetooth headphones?”
Using headphones, whether wired or wireless for several hours daily can be detrimental to your ears and expose you to electromagnetic field (EMF) radiation. Excessive usage of either can have health complications in the long run. However, wireless headphones are more harmful than the wired headphones.
Almost every device supports wireless technology and so does your smartphone. The smartphone supports wireless listening devices and this improves your listening experience. A wireless headphone connected to your smartphone emits some EMF radiation. The radiation emitted by these wireless headphones can have negative health implications over time.
The wireless headphones don’t have any physical wires connected to the phone. The devices communicate with each other wirelessly through the use of Bluetooth technology while others use Wi-Fi technology. This makes it easy to listen to music or other audio content from anywhere. Read more detailed information in my article on Bluetooth vs Wi-Fi radiation.
Why Should You Use Wireless Headphones?
Many people prefer wireless headphones over wired headphones because of the benefits they offer. Some of these benefit include:
- Wireless headphones give you freedom of movement since you can enable the Bluetooth feature to allow you to use the headphones up to 33 feet from the cell phone.
- Wireless headphones offer better sound quality than wired headphones thus giving you a better experience when listening to music or audio content.
- Since they are wireless, they are tangle free. You don’t have to worry about the cables getting in your way while working.
Limitations of Wireless Headphones
Although wired headphones do have health risks, wireless headphones put you at a greater risk. Wireless headphones do not have limitations like wired headphones but they do emit high-levels of EMF radiation.
Limitations of Wired Headphones
Even though the wired headphones have lower health risks, they also have some limitations. The cables can get in your way, especially if you’re working in a busy environment and can get tangled with other objects.
You always have to ensure the phone is in your pocket, especially when moving around. This may be inconvenient to you if you don’t have pockets. Since you only have the range of the cable, you can only do tasks within one or two feet of the device without having to pick it up and move it, or carry it with you.
Radiation from cell phones is very high; therefore, putting the cellphone in your pockets can have risks, including increasing infertility in men.
Which One Is Safer?
If your work requires you to constantly move around or if you’re traveling, then wireless headphones may be suitable and convenient for you. They allow you to move freely as long as you are within the working range of the wireless signals. A set of wired headphones can restrict your movement.
During a workout, wireless headphones can be safer than wired headphones because the cables from the wired headphones can inconvenience you or get tangled when running or using exercise equipment.
When driving, you can turn on the Bluetooth feature and be able to make and receive calls. The hands-free option for calling and receiving calls makes wireless headphones safer than operating your phone on the speaker or other settings.
Wireless headphones use Bluetooth technology that emits harmful radiation that can affect you in the long run. Therefore, having wired headphones is much safer than having a set of wireless headphones (Bluetooth enabled headphone).
Although wired headphones are safer in terms of health risks, there are situations where wireless headphones are safer. For example, if you’re working in a busy environment or even driving, wireless headphones will be more suitable and safer than wired headphones.
With more people using headphones, it is good to know that wired headphones are much safer than wireless headphones because they don’t need to use Bluetooth which is considered unsafe. Therefore, to reduce health risks associated with Bluetooth devices, you have to connect the cable headphone directly to your smartphone.
Using a wireless headphone increases the risk of high intensity radiation going into your head and directly into your ear. A wired headphone reduces the risk of radiation exposure to your ear and brain. This is because there is Bluetooth based EMF radiation emitted from wireless headphones.
A set of wireless headphones transmits electromagnetic field radiation directly into your ear while wired headphones release a bit of radiation via the cable.
Therefore, deciding which is safer for you to use depends on certain factors to be considered. When purchasing the headphones, your decision will be based on how and where you plan to use them. Knowing that will allow you to choose either a wired headphone or wireless headphone with enabled Bluetooth feature.
Comparing Radiation from Bluetooth vs Wired Headphones
The growth of wireless technology has led to increased use of Bluetooth to transmit data over short distances. Bluetooth technology provides a convenient way of performing several tasks at once. Bluetooth headphones act as a mini Wi-Fi router and they emit Radio Frequency (RF) radiation or microwave radiation similar to the frequency emitted by microwave ovens when cooking food.
Bluetooth technology and your smartphone emit short wavelengths using an intensity of pulses. Continuous transmission of these pulses can damage your DNA cells, increasing your risk of cancer.
Bluetooth headphones continuously emit RF radiation even when the device is idle. Constant transmission of RF signals makes them more dangerous than devices that emit high-levels of EMF for a shorter period of time. Therefore, continuous use of Bluetooth will expose your head to the same frequency microwave ovens emit.
Wired headphones emit low amounts of radiation compared to Bluetooth headphones. The radiation from wired headphones pass through the cables and go directly into your ear canal and head.
Watch this YouTube video illustrating the amount of radiation emitted from traditional wired headphones:
The connection cables act as the antenna through which the radiation passes. The emitted radiation passes through your ear exposing your brain to the radiation. You can read more here on the research being conducted on the effects of radiation from headphones.
Cell phones also emit multiple types of RF radiation using different frequencies from that of Bluetooth. The type of RF radiation emitted depends on whether the cell phone is connected via Bluetooth, receiving or making a call or accessing the GPS.
How to Reduce Radiation from Wired Headphones
You can reduce the amount of radiation transmitted through wired headphones by using ferrite beads.
Ferrite beads are cylindrical parts added to the cables and other electronic devices to reduce the amount of radiation being transmitted. This in turn reduces the risk of exposure to the user to RF radiation.
The beads filter high-frequency electricity and ensure the electronic circuit is not destroyed by the frequency surges or spikes.
The ferrite beads not only filter high-frequency electricity but they are also responsible for reducing RF radiation from headsets. They block at least 90% of the radiation emitted, which makes the wired headphones safer.
Alternatively you can use speakers to prevent direct transmission of radiation to your head through any type of headphones.
You can also use air tube headphones which emit almost zero EMF radiation.
Health Risks Associated with Headphones
Using wired or wireless headphones for longer periods can result in negative effects including depression, hearing problems, headaches and damage to DNA:
Electromagnetic field radiation emitted by the headphones penetrates into your brain and affects your capability to think. With time, this may lead to depression and it may take you a long time to recover. When using high volume levels with wireless headphones for long periods, you put yourself at high risk for depression.
2. Hearing problems
Wired headphones are associated with hearing problems when used regularly for long periods. If you’re sensitive to sound, you may develop hearing problems if you continue using headphones regularly. Bluetooth headphones not only emit EMF radiation but also can lead to hearing problems.
Other problems associated with radiation from Bluetooth headphones include: damaging of the vestibular nerves, ear ache, dizziness, tinnitus and delay of the sensorineural hearing.
You may notice frequent headaches when your headphones are plugged into your ears or when you remove them from your ears. The sound from the headphones combined with the emitted EMF radiation will have an impact on your brain and this may contribute to headaches. Listening to louder music or audio media will worsen the condition.
4. Damage of the DNA cells
Long exposure to RF radiation from the Bluetooth device and radiation from your cell phone can negatively affect your brain as well as alter the DNA cells in your body.
Precautions to take
If you have to use headphones, they must be used with caution. After comparing the safety of the two types of headphones, we know that wired headphones are often preferred over the wireless headphones. This doesn’t mean they are safer than wireless headphones.
If you’re looking for convenience, then ensure you buy the best wireless headphones you can afford. If you’re using wired headphones, make sure to buy headphone cables with ferrite beads to reduce the risk of exposure to RF radiation.
If you go for wireless headphones, make sure to:
- Wireless headphones shouldn’t be used for a long period of time. You shouldn’t use them for more than an hour per day. This will reduce the risk of exposure to Bluetooth radiation.
- You should keep your volume low to avoid hearing impairment. Ensure that the headset is set to use the recommended safe volume for your headphone. This will save your ears from any damage or other risks associated with listening to loud sound via the headphones.
- Buy branded headphones from credible sources, since they make them in accordance with standards for high quality construction.
- Don’t share your headphones with other people because sharing can expose you to germs.
- Ensure the phone is kept away from your body at all times and only use headphones when necessary.
- You should take periodic breaks from continuous use of headphones. For example, take a break after every hour in order to reduce your exposure.
- Buy low EMF headphones. There are various low EMF headphones on the market.
Best Low EMF Radiation Headphones
These types of headphones offer a safe, high-quality listening experience. They look like regular headphones but the structure and design of the headphone ensures no EMF radiation is transmitted.
Air tubes use acoustic technology to deliver quality sound without putting any electric components in your ear. This technology shields your body against harmful radiation from your cell phone, laptop and/or tablet.
The air tubes do not use the traditional style cables. Instead, they are built with a hollow air tube that is used to transmit the sound. The material used for making the air tubes is a blend of copper material braided with a nylon cord.
Copper is one of the metals used to block extremely low-frequency radiation and electrical signals. It is based on the principles of a Faraday cage. Read more information about how copper metal blocks EMF radiation here.
Air tube devices generate high-quality sound as a result of air-filled hollow tubes. The sound, tone and acoustics are enhanced to give you a better listening experience.
The speakers of air tube headphones are placed away from your head compared to other types of headphones that have the speakers built next to your ears.
Air tube speakers convert electrical signals to acoustic signals before transmission to your head. Once converted, the acoustic signals flow through the hollow and the sound reaches and passes through your metal-free earbuds and into your ears.
This anti-radiation air tube gives you the best listening experience by delivering crystal clear sound. It reduces EMF exposure by removing the wires and electronic components from being adjacent to your head.
The air tubes have stereo speakers fitted with radiation filters to ensure there is no radiation being transmitted to your head. The air tubes ensure the cell phone is kept some distance from your head, and this reduces the amount of radiation exposure to your head.
The radiation filter enclosure is made of aluminum material to block the EMF radiation transmitted through the wires from reaching your brain.
The air tube has convenient features that let you receive or make a call and it has an on/off button.
The sound passes through the hollow air tube into the ear without exposing your head to any radiation.
DefenderShield air tube headphones have the best quality sound while protecting you from the EMF radiation emitted by your cell phone.
Compared to traditional wired headphones, air tubes transmit stereo-grade sound via the hollow air tubes. They use acoustic sound technology to deliver a crystal clear sound. The high grade speakers deliver high-quality sound.
The radiation free air tube is built with multiple accessories to secure your earbuds as well as allow you to perform other activities. They’re compatible with the latest smartphones, tablets, laptops and any 3.5 mm audio device.
The DefenderShield stereo air tube is made from braided nylon cable blended with copper metal to shield you from extremely low-frequency (ELF) radiation. It can block EMF radiation up to 99% from all the 5G network frequencies.
They’re safer than the wireless headphones and they have a tangle-free nylon cord. When running or doing other intense exercise, you can secure the earbuds by using the ear hooks and the clip.
Headphones, whether wired or wireless are not recommended for you if you are concerned about EMF radiation. To answer the question, “Are wired headphones safer than Bluetooth headphones?” the answer is yes.
Some people believe that traditional wired headphones deliver quality sound, but the newest smartphones that support wireless headphones deliver the best quality.
Wireless technology is getting better each day and so are the wireless headphones. With time, even better Bluetooth enabled headphones will be on the market.
You may then want to switch from wired headphones to wireless headphones without worrying about any significant health risks. Although wireless headphones emit higher levels of EMF radiation than wired headphones, using them with precautions can minimize the harmful effects.
Furthermore, there are EMF radiation free headphones that make your listening experience much safer. For example, airtube headphones are available and they look exactly like other earphones. The structure and design of these air tube headphones ensure that no EMF radiation is transmitted to your ears and brain.
The air tube headphones have high-fidelity speakers that deliver crystal clear sound, and they’re inexpensive. If you care about the dangers of EMF radiation exposure to your brain from using traditional headphones, you should consider air tube headphones. They are a simple plug-in device and are an effective tool for reducing exposure to EMF radiation.