Do you live in an old building with poor ventilation? Do you suffer from various health issues and complications? If you do, then you might be facing exposure to high concentration of radon gas. Radon gas is a colorless and odorless gas emitted from the rock and soil used to build the house. The uranium present in the rock and soil break down to form radon gas, which increases its concentration depending on the age of the structure. In an outdoor environment, the concentration of radon gas is low because of its dilution with oxygen and other gases. However, in an indoor environment that is not well ventilated the radon gas levels are bound to be higher.
The Health Canada federal institution aims at making sure that the society is aware of any health effects caused by air, water, noise, and soil pollution exposure in their environment. In addition to this, they provide health, statistical, consultation, and law and regulations on such matters. For more information on any issue relating to air pollution, visit their site on https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada.html.
Health Implications from Exposure to Radon Gas
It is worth noting that high radon gas levels contaminate the air. Thus, people who are in constant contact with such environments tend to suffer from various health risks. As radon gas exists in your home atmosphere, it decays. Decayed radon gas sparks the development of radioactive elements called radon decay products (RDP). These products stick on surfaces and dust airborne particles. This makes it easier to inhale them. Most studies show that people tend to spend more than seventy percent of the day within indoor structures. Therefore, increased exposure to high levels of radon gas is bound to lead to the following health issues.
Radon Gas as an Indoor Pollutant
- Lung cancer and related issues
Inhaling the decayed products of radon gas causes severe damage to the lung tissue. This damage kills the cells through a process called irradiation. Irradiation has been known to cause a cancerous mutation to the cells of the body. This leads to lung cancer. Therefore, persons living in houses with a high concentration of radon gas are at risk of developing lung cancer especially if they are avid smokers. Smoking introduces new gases into the atmosphere, which makes it easier for the radon gas products to attach themselves to more surfaces and gas particles.
The Ontario Lung Association provides amazing insight on how to manage and prevent lung related diseases and conditions. This is through treatments and policies that help people quit smoking and take care of their immediate environment. If you suffer from any lung related issues or smoking addiction, visit their site on http://onlung.ca/, for more information, research, advocacy, education, and support.
How to Get Rid Of Radon Gas in Your Home
Is your house radon free? In order for you to be one hundred percent sure of this, you will need the assistance of a highly qualified professional to test the levels of the gas in your home. Radon gas has properties that allow it to penetrate and travel through surfaces and other gases in its pure state. This means that it can enter your home environment through cracks, pipes, floors, and even cables. In addition t this, radon can interact with any other gas in the atmosphere without combining with it to form other compounds. This gas cannot successfully go through filtration. The only means of removing it is through ventilating your environment.
Two steps lead to the reduction or elimination of radon gas from your environment. They are:
- Radon testing
There are various methods of testing for the presence of radon gas in your home environment. These are using short-term and long-term tests. These tests serve very different purposes as shown below.
- Short-term testing methods- This estimates the radon gas levels in the atmosphere at the time.
- Long-term testing methods- This measures and calculates the radon gas levels over a specific period. This will show the testers whether the gas levels are increasing and the rate at which the levels are increasing by. It is advisable that this process takes at least six months.
Most retail stores offer DIY (Do It Yourself) testing kits. These kits are not as accurate and effective as hired professionals are. In addition to this, result interpretation is not easy for the average unqualified person.
- Radon mitigation
This process works to reduce the levels of radon gas in the environment. The standard Canadian radon level is 200 Bq/m3. Therefore, anything lower than this in Canada is acceptable through the use of mitigating systems that reduce the exposure period and health risks that follow radon gas exposure. Currently, there are two mitigating systems in existence. They are:
- Active soil depressurization (ASD)
This is the preferred method when dealing with institutional, commercial, and residential structures. Just as the name suggests, the entire vapor under the structure in the soil is actively depressurized. This pressure reduction and the use of fan move the vapor to the outdoor atmosphere. The radon gas the disperses and de-concentrates as it undergoes dilution by other gases. This reduces the radon gas levels that enter the building. This is a permanent solution.
- Passive soil depressurization (PSD)
Unlike the former, this is a temporary solution. It is sometimes referred to as Radon Resistant New Construction. Unlike the former, this method does not incorporate the use of a fan. It wholly depends on the difference in pressure to eradicate the radon gas from the soil under the structure. This means that this solution has radon gas deficits. Thus, it cannot be an alternative to ASD.
Before the testing process begins, make sure that the professional is certified in radon measurement and mitigation. Various professional companies deal with radon measurement and mitigation. Alternatively, you could seek the help of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association that will make sure that any repairs, renovations, maintenance, and inspections on new houses are done effectively. Contact them through visiting their site on http://www.chba.ca/, for further information.