What is Radon? 

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Focus on Radon gas chemical element from the Mendeleev periodic table - concept with magnifying glass

Radon is not harmful, but prolonged exposure can be. It is present in places with poor ventilation measures. Long-term exposure increases the susceptibility to lung illnesses, leading to cough and difficulty breathing. 

What is Radon?

Radon gas is one of the most common sources of natural radiation. A colourless, tasteless and odourless radioactive gas called radon is released from rocks and soil; it initially starts as uranium that turns into radium and then radon. The gas is present in the air and water in small amounts when it is released from the soil. 

While the released gas is small in amounts and generally harmless, various studies have found that exposure to indoor radon is harmful to human health, even in moderate concentrations. Prolonged exposure, on the other hand, to higher radon concentrations leads to severe health risks, such as lung cancer. 

Exposure to Indoor Radon

Human exposure to radon occurs when they inhale it. Workplaces, schools and residential buildings are the most common spaces for higher radon concentrations. It can seep into your home through foundation cracks. It gets trapped inside through cracks and accumulates gradually. Since radon is also present in water, you can get exposed to it through well water. While traces of radon can be present in any residential building, studies have suggested that the gas is highly likely to build up in tightly sealed and well-insulated homes. 

Effects of Radon Exposure on Human Health

Humans are exposed to radioactivity on a daily basis, and according to studies, radon makes up half of human radiation exposure. Radon is one of the leading causes of lung cancer amongst smokers, while for non-smokers, it has become the leading cause. WHO estimates that radon is responsible for up to 14 per cent of all lung cancer cases reported. Moreover, smokers are 25 per cent more likely to get lung cancer due to radon inhalation. The Agency of Toxic Substances and Disease Registry found that radon exposure also increases the chances of non-malignant lung diseases, such as “emphysema, chronic interstitial pneumonia and pulmonary fibrosis.” 

Testing Radon Levels at Home

The first step is to measure radon levels; you can bring a radon kit and test yourself. You will have to place the device in your room or office and then send it to a lab for testing. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has also listed out approved contractors who test radon levels if you want a professional’s help. You require immediate action if the results show radon levels equal to or higher than 4 picocuries per litre. 

Ways to Take Actions

The ultimate solution, according to the CDC, is to install a radon reduction system to mitigate higher levels. However, there are other facilitating corrective measures you can take to reduce radon exposure, such as: 

 

Increase Airflow into the House:

Ventilation is the key strategy to reduce radon levels. Air circulation by opening windows, doors and fans will help dilute higher concentrations; however, it is only temporary and can lead to poor indoor air quality over time. Therefore, air purification technology, like Euromate’s, purifies indoor air. With the help of commercial and residential air purifiers, we can reduce higher radon levels and mitigate the risk of exposure. Our air purifiers provide multiple air exchanges within an hour and feature HEPA filters for maximum extraction. 

 

Seal Wall and Floor Cracks: 

Contact a contractor to seal all cracks in walls and floors to prevent radon from seeping into the house. Use a caulk or plaster to seal the house and reduce exposure. After sealing cracks, do not forget to test for radon levels to be on the safe side. 

Contact Euromate Pure Air to inquire more about our products for residential and commercial spaces and how they help reduce exposure to radon gas in Australia.