While everyone has been worried about the possibility that mobile (cell) phones cause cancer, few realise that the devices are a major cause of tinnitus, the distressing hearing problem. Even using a mobile phone for 10 minutes increases the risk by 71 per cent, researchers have discovered, although the risk doubles for those who have used a mobile phone for more than four years. The overall risk for any use is 37 per cent compared with someone who does not use a mobile phone. Researchers made the discovery when they compared the records of 100 tinnitus sufferers with a similar number of healthy controls. Most tinnitus sufferers said their problem was on their left side, where they held their mobile phone, and 29 per cent said they also suffered from vertigo. (Source: Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 2010; doi: 10.1136/oem.2009.048116).

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