Radon in the Home
Radon is an odorless, colorless, radioactive gas. It is also the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Surgeon General’s office estimate radon is responsible for more than 20,000 lung cancer deaths each year. Since it is difficult to identify any immediate symptoms related to radon exposure, it may take years before health problems appear.
Having your home tested is the only effective way to determine whether you or your family is at risk of radon exposure. Public Health and Wellness was recently awarded a grant from the Kentucky Cabinet for Health & Family Services that allows us to purchase radon test kits and provide one free to Jefferson County citizens. Click here if you live in Jefferson County and you want to request a free radon test kit.
How Radon Enters Your Home
Radon is a gas that occurs naturally from the breakdown—or the radioactive decay—of uranium. Rocks, soil, and in some cases groundwater can all contain uranium. Because radon comes from so many sources, people are easily exposed to it. Exposure can occur through breathing outdoor air, in buildings and homes, and by eating or drinking (ingestion). Radon gas can seep through cracks in buildings and expose people to the radiation, which can lead to severe health problems. The EPA lists the following ways that radon can get into buildings:
- Cracks in solid floors and walls
- Construction joints
- Gaps in suspended floors
- Gaps around service pipes
- Cavities inside walls
- The water supply
For information about radon levels, please see the United States Environmental Protection Agency
EPA Radon Risks Chart.
Above information is provided by the CDC. Click here to learn more.
Learn more about radon. Radon the Invisible Killer (video) Videos in English, Spanish, Somali and Hmong: