|Smoking is bad enough, but if you also breathe in high levels|
of radon at home, your risk of lung cancer increases even more.
Radon is a colorless, odorless radioactive gas that occurs naturally in the environment and that can accumulate in a home after entering it through cracks and fissures in the foundation. Even new homes can have elevated radon levels.
Experts say people can test their homes for radon quite easily and reduce levels of radon with a few relatively inexpensive renovations.
A heavy smoker has a one-in-10 chance of developing lung cancer. Long-term exposure to high levels of radon results in a one-in-20 chance of developing lung cancer.
Both exposures increase the odds substantially to a one-in-three chance, Health Canada says.
The experts shared the following tips:
- Test your home for radon. The winter months are a good time to place the small detector in the basement, if you spend around 4 hours per day there, or on the ground floor. Send it to the lab after three months.
- Seal cracks in the foundation
- Put a cap on the sump pump
- In a home with very high levels of radon, you can install a special pipe and venting system that pumps air outside (active soil depressurization)
Source: The Daily Gleaner
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