Is It Safe to Sit Next to a Wireless Router? Fact or Fiction

  • By: Josh Koop
  • Date: June 23, 2021
  • Time to read: 4 min.
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This has long been a concern for people when they read online that wireless routers produce “radiation” or they see that they contain other problematic issues. Many of these things are just based on people who heard and parroted an urban legend, today we set the record straight for you!

Is it safe to sit next to a wireless router? Absolutely it is totally fine as radio waves are very safe overall compared to other radiation types which can cause damage to your cells. Unlike what is stated by internet brains it isn’t dangerous to you or anyone else.

So how did this ever become “a thing” and something that people will caution you against? Well the rumors began when people interpreted science without the same guidelines that scientists will follow when using data for studies.

While that sounds crazy thats basically how health and nutrition operates non-stop which is why something can kill you one day and save your life the next day.

Why Did This Rumor Start?

Because people extrapolated the term “radiation” and conflated it with sickness and cancer possibilities that happen with other radiation. The thing these people don’t understand is that radiation is just a scientific term for “energy moving through space”.

Not every radiation is the same and this is why they don’t fundamentally understand what they want to argue. Technically a flashlight is radiation, this doesn’t make them cancer causing nor dangerous.

The radio waves, or RF signals, are a form of non-ionizing radiation, which is unable to damage cells and tissues.

How Far Should You Sit From WiFi Routers?

You can sit with it on your desk if that’s where you have the device and connection, there are no studies from legitimate science showing that there are any issues being in the area.

I would make sure that you place your WiFi router as close to the middle of your home as possible to give the best coverage of your working areas, as far as if that’s a desk then you are totally fine to install it there.

Closeup shot of an internet modem with a cable on a wooden surface - Is It Safe to Sit Next to a Wireless Router

Is it Safe to Sleep Near a Wireless Router?

This is a simple yes, though I wouldn’t personally install the wireless router in my bedroom as this is not very often the center of your house, it isn’t a problem unless you hate the flashing and blinking lights that they have.

Not All Radiation Is The Same

Many of you, when you hear the term “radiation”, immediately have pictures of death in your head as it is highly tied to events like nuclear plant issues and more devastating problems we experience.

The thing you need to understand though about this concept of radiation is the very difference between ionizing and non-ionizing radiation. Ionizing radiation is the dangerous stuff, which includes things like x-ray radiation, gamma radiation, and ultra-violet light on the high end of the ultra-violet spectrum.

What is the big difference between these types and radio waves? The key element at play here is the wavelength of the radiation type.

Radiation Waves Not the same - Radio to Gamma - Is It Safe to Sit Next to a Wireless Router

Ionizing Radiation

When you ionize electrons and knock them out of their standard orbit you get “ionizing radiation”. This radiation type is incredibly hazardous to your health.

This doesn’t need to be a heavy dose at one time but it could be as simple as a little exposure over a long period of time continuously. This persistence of exposure can significantly increase your overall risks for cancer as this can mutate your cells.

Non-Ionizing Radiation

So the opposite of the ionizing radiation is the non-ionizing radiation, this radiation doesn’t have the same energy level and due to this can’t ionize atoms.

This includes a large variety of things including infrared radiation, visible light itself, and radio waves. These kinds of things include devices from walkie-talkies and radios to microwaves.

In the area of biological effects and medical applications of non-ionizing radiation approximately 25,000 articles have been published over the past 30 years. Despite the feeling of some people that more research needs to be done, scientific knowledge in this area is now more extensive than for most chemicals. Based on a recent in-depth review of the scientific literature, the WHO concluded that current evidence does not confirm the existence of any health consequences from exposure to low-level electromagnetic fields.

World Health Organization

As you can read above the World Health Organization which is typically overly cautious before making any type of judgement erring instead on the side of investigation and qualification.

Since they have decided their is nothing wrong with the research and information you can pretty much feel free from worry about the fact of wireless being hazardous.

There is clearly no health risks from radio-frequency communications devices!

Final Thoughts on Is It Safe to Sit Next to a Wireless Router

There is nothing that should stop you from placing your wireless router wherever you need it to be. What you need to do is install it in the best place to get you complete signal coverage instead of worrying about sitting and sleeping.

It has been shown that the radiation you get hit with from the sun daily is massively larger than the radiation a WiFi router will put out. The microwave in your house is at least 700 watts, a wireless router operates at 1 watt.

If you are looking for a high performing and high quality router then I want you to check out my recommended gear page, this will have information on choosing a router, modem, and if for gaming what hardware will get you the best performance.

Radio Controlled World - RC Heli 1
Radio Controlled World - RC Heli 1