Davidson, Harry C. and Lutman, Mark E.
Survey of mobile phone use and their chronic effects on the hearing of a student population
International Journal of Audiology, 46, (3), . (doi:10.1080/14992020600690472).
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Mobile phone ownership and usage is now widespread and public concern has developed over possible harmful physiological effects of their use. This study aimed to investigate the prevalence of student mobile phone ownership and any possible chronic effects of usage on hearing, tinnitus and balance. Questionnaires for electronic self-completion were distributed to University of Southampton postgraduates, and 117 out of 160 returned met the criteria for analysis. A total of 94% were current mobile phone users, and only 2% had never used a mobile phone. Duration of ownership and daily usage ranged from 0-7 years and 0-45 minutes respectively. Text-messaging was more popular than talking. High or long-term users reported no worse hearing, tinnitus, or balance than low or short-term users. The results of this study confirm that the prevalence of mobile phone ownership amongst students is extremely high. However there appear to be no harmful effects of mobile phone usage on their audiovestibular systems within the range of exposure of the study, insofar as can be detected by the self-report method employed
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