Health officials are warning that people who have their smartphones in their hands can have potentially harmful interactions with others.
Researchers in Australia say people who use their phones while wearing them have a higher risk of getting sick.
The report is based on a study of 4,400 adults in Sydney, Australia.
While most participants said they had no physical symptoms, people who used their phones during a phone conversation or when they were chatting on the phone were more likely to have a cough, fever or other symptoms, the researchers found.
In another study, published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers in Japan found that a single cellphone use was associated with a one in three chance of developing a respiratory illness in someone over age 60.
Another study of older adults found that people using their phones for longer periods of time were more prone to developing respiratory infections, such as pneumonia.
Researchers said that the study’s findings should be used as a wake-up call for people who are trying to stay healthy while wearing smartphones.
“We need to be more mindful about when we are wearing our phones and using them,” said Dr. Jessica M. Kwan, an associate professor of preventive medicine at the University of Michigan.
She said it’s important to use them to take notes, listen to music, and play video games.
People who use phones while using them should wear gloves and protective clothing when using them, and to not touch the screen while it is on, she added.
We have to be mindful of how we’re using our phones.
And we should use them with care,” said Kwan.