Are Smartwatches Safe to Wear? Ultimate Guide

There are many benefits of using a smartwatch. But the question that has been asked by many smartwatch enthusiasts: Are smartwatches safe to wear? The quick answer is smartwatches are safe to wear.

Are smartwatches safe to wear

Electronic gadgets like smartwatches and fitness trackers require FCC (Federal Communications Commission) clearance prior to release into the market to ensure safety, so you can rest assured your smartwatch will not cause any harm.

Smart watches emit less radiation than cell phones- in fact, they emit about the same level of radiation as a microwave oven. Here at Watch Shop, we’ve taken steps to make sure our devices meet all necessary safety standards for use around children too!

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Are Smartwatches Safe to Wear?

Smartwatches are the next generation of technology. They can track your basic vital signs, and even alert you to any abnormalities in ECG or heart rate readings. There is still some debate about is safety. Let us have a closer look into that.

1. Radiation

Smartwatches or fitness trackers both utilize radio frequency transmitters to stay connected with other networks or devices. According to the National Cancer Institute, smartphones and smartwatches use low levels of non-ionizing radiation. There is no evidence to prove that these low-ionizing radiations cause cancer in humans.

Dr. Joseph Mercola, an osteopathic physician, says that Apple Watches uses Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for data transfer, and there is no evidence to prove that this will harm humans.

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New Apple Watch Series 6 (GPS, 40mm) - Blue Aluminum Case with Deep Navy Sport Band
43,555 Reviews
New Apple Watch Series 6 (GPS, 40mm) - Blue Aluminum Case with Deep Navy Sport Band
  • GPS model lets you take calls and reply to texts...
  • Measure your blood oxygen with an all-new sensor...
  • Check your heart rhythm with the ECG app

From all these studies and findings, it is clear that smartphones and smartwatches do not impact the human body directly. But it can be a source of distraction and mental stress like stress, addiction, etc. 

2. Skin irritation

In 2014, Fitbit suspended sales of its “Force” fitness tracker after some users developed rashes or allergic problems while using the device. Well, not just Fitbit, other brands, such as Polar and Garmin, also faced such issues. 

But what is the reason behind this? Well, everyone’s skin is different and will react to various factors. Some smartwatch manufacturers use nickel to make the strap. As a result, people with nickel sensitivity face skin irritation. Similarly, some users wear the band too tight, and it cause some discomfort.

So, to prevent skin issues, you should wear the smartwatch loosely enough to move it back and forth. Also, most smartwatches come with a silicone strap. Obviously, you may have an allergic reaction if you are allergic to silicone. 

Luckily, most of the smartwatches and fitness trackers allow you to replace the bands. So you can buy another strap made with different materials to avoid such allergic reactions. 

3. A source of distraction

Using smartphones can be very irritating for people around. However, individuals don’t use smartphones frequently or at all times due to various restrictions. 

In the case of a smartwatch, it rests on the wrist. As a result, the users can access information quickly. But it can create a distraction while driving or studying. 

As per some studies, drivers who check their smartwatches need around 2.52 seconds to react to the incident that occurs outside of the vehicle. In the case of smartphones, that is approximately 1.85 seconds.

To operate the watch, you may need to use both hands. While your left-hand needs to be raised, you need to use the right hand to press the buttons. As a result, you will remove both your hands from the steering, increasing the risk of getting into an accident. 

On the other hand, you can’t avoid notifications. After getting a notification, the smartwatch will keep beeping, flashing lights, or buzzing. This is a difficult temptation to avoid. So, this is a serious source of distraction than smartphones.

Smartphones come with large screens. As a result, you can see the message at once. On the other hand, smartwatches come with smaller screens. So, you need to wait for the information to scroll down to read it properly. This means you will take extra time to absorb the information, thereby taking your eyes off the road for few more minutes. 

4. Privacy issues and Data breach

Few reports suggest that multiple smartwatches have some vulnerabilities. As a result, you may face privacy breach issues. Is data transfer between a phone and smartwatch secure? Well, the answer is no. In most cases, the data is not encrypted. So, the hackers can hack the signal and steal your data.

The amount of data a smartwatch collects makes your smartwatch a ubiquitous monitoring device. From calendar information, steps measurement to personal notifications (OTPs, credit card transactions, etc.), your smartwatch can transfer a considerable amount of data. If the device doesn’t have any security features, all such data can be hacked. 

5. Privacy concerns related to smartwatches

The smartwatch manufacturers are collecting information in order to offer you the best services. But is it true? What are they doing with such a vast amount of data? Well, this is something that every smartwatch user should consider. With any smart technology, privacy is a major issue. Just think, whether you are getting enough benefits from smartwatches or are you susceptible to privacy risks? It’s up to you to decide. 

6. Some other health issues that you need to know

Different health issues can arise due to the radiation. For example, some users have reported experiencing headaches as well as nausea. 

Some other smartwatch users have reported that they struggled to cope with the new sleeping pattern after wearing the watch for a few days. 

In some cases, memory issues can also happen as the device creates distractions affecting your concentration power.

Is wearing smartwatches suitable for you?

Even if there is no evidence, there is no doubt that smartwatches do have certain side effects, but they have simplified the lifestyle in specific ways. A lot of things can be carried out using a smartwatch even when you are away from your phone.

For example, if you can’t afford expensive tools to track your fitness level, a smartwatch is your ideal option. All the smartwatches come with advanced features like a Pedometer that can count your steps. Besides, they can monitor heart rate and SpO2 or oxygen level.  

As a result, you can accomplish your fitness goals much faster. With different workout modes, like weightlifting, cycling, swimming, walking, and running, you can track your daily workout activities. 

There are incidents where the smartwatch saves people’s lives, especially smartwatches with ECG and fall detection. 

In case of a hard fall and irresponsive for a few seconds, the smartwatch will automatically call the Emergency Department and Emergency contact with your current location.

Final Words

The above points have proved that smartwatches can make a huge difference in your life. Even though they have some drawbacks, you can’t ignore the benefits they provide to us in this hectic and fast-paced life. Just use them wisely, and you can prevent risks related to wearing a smartwatch. 

It is true that smartwatches may not develop serious health issues after using them for a few months. But what about five years or twenty years? Well, there is no specific answer. However, some evidence suggests that using a smartwatch from reputed brands like Apple will not cause any harm. 

Sale
New Apple Watch Series 6 (GPS, 40mm) - Blue Aluminum Case with Deep Navy Sport Band
43,555 Reviews
New Apple Watch Series 6 (GPS, 40mm) - Blue Aluminum Case with Deep Navy Sport Band
  • GPS model lets you take calls and reply to texts...
  • Measure your blood oxygen with an all-new sensor...
  • Check your heart rhythm with the ECG app

Besides, if you are into ease of use and mobility, you won’t find a better option than a smartwatch to stay connected. Don’t just consider the side effects of the device, as there are benefits too.

Saneesh VS is a Registered Nurse by Profession and Wearable Tech Enthusiast by Passion. He loves to write about fitness, smartwatches, and fitness trackers. He also loves reading books on wearable tech, technology in healthcare, artificial intelligence etc., which he has been writing for the past 5 years.

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