As January has been named the Radon Action Month, various local governments and authorities have set out to take measures against the silent and unseen potential killer.
- Radon is a radioactive chemical element.
- The noble gas is odorless, tasteless, and colorless.
- It is formed by a natural process.
- This is the decaying process of radium.
- Radon has come to be considered a potential health hazard.
- It reached this status due to its radioactivity.
Radon is not a very well known element. Only a few of its compounds have been established. Its radioactivity is also the reason behind its relative lack of available information.
Radon itself was noted to decay. It was seen to produce other radioactive elements. These have been named radon progeny or daughters. The said decay products are solids. Unlike radon, they stick to surfaces like dust particles.
As it is, the radon progeny can be inhaled. If such contaminated dust is inhaled, it might stick to the lungs’ airways. As such, they might also potentially lead to the development of lung cancer.
The Environmental Protection Agency or EPA has released some details. It has named January as the National Radon Action Month. Through it, the public should be better informed about this potential killer. EPA has been carrying out epidemiological studies.
They have shown a link between radon and the incidence of lung cancer. The test targeted cases of breathing in high concentrations of radon. The U.S. EPA declared the element as the second most frequent lung cancer factor. It was situated just behind cigarette smoking.
It is also considered the number one cause of lung cancer cause amongst non-smokers, according to estimates. Around 21,000 Americans die of lung cancer each year.
During the National Radon Action Month, EPA set out with a clear goal. It will try to inform people and point out the element’s health hazard status. At the same time, it will offer a solution.
EPA declared radon a health hazard with a simple solution. As such, people should turn to “Test, Fix, Save a Life.” throughout January.
Together with the United States Surgeon General, the agency is urging for action. The two are advising people to protect their health against the silent killer.
The best solution is a simple test. Homes, schools, and buildings, in general, should be tested for radon. By testing the chemical’s levels, unneeded exposure can be prevented. Radon can be found throughout the country. It can also easily penetrate any building. This can lead to high concentration levels.
As such, people are advised to test their houses. All homes and residences below the third floor should be especially tested. Schools should be verified as well.
Radon testing is considered a simple and inexpensive process. Radon reduction systems are also available. Some such systems have a high effectiveness. They could help reduce levels by even up to 99 percent.
As such, even high radon levels can be lowered. If not totally cleared, at least they can reach an acceptable level.
During Radon Action Month, some local governments will reportedly offer free test kits. Such kits can include a special substance, similar to a charcoal. When left exposed to the outside air, this will gather gas particles. Kits will also include utilization and testing instructions.
The kit can be mailed to a laboratory. This will test the substance and send back the results. Kits can reportedly cost about $10. The cold months are reportedly the best time to test for radon. During such periods, doors and windows remain closed. As such, testing will be more accurate.
More information about the National Radon Action Month can be found on the EPA website. Testing, kits, and solutions will also be offered.
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