The recent exposure of radiation due to explosions at Japanese nuclear plants has sparked fears of the health hazards of radiation. These conditions raise a lot of concern to peoples across the world especially those who lived near the accident.
Here are few things that you should know to help you better understand about radiation exposure and put your mind at ease:
- Radiation is Everywhere
Radiation is in everywhere. It’s in the air, water, soil and even in our foods. It comes from naturally-occurring atoms that are unstable because they have extra energy in their core. Eventually, these unstable atoms “decay”, releasing the extra energy from their core, and become stable. The energy released is radiation. Heat, light and microwaves all emit some form of radiation. This type of exposure is generally not considered a health concern.
- Every human are exposed to small amounts of Radiation
According to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 80 percent of people exposed to radiation from natural sources while the remaining 20 percent comes from man-made radiation sources, particularly medical X-rays. These means, human body can tolerate to certain level of radiation.
- Acute Radiation Syndrome (ARS)
During a nuclear accident, people are exposed to high level of radiation over short time and may develop Acute Radiation Syndrome.
Within few hours of exposure, people with ARS may experience diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and skin damage. Over time, radiation can damage one’s bone marrow and cause internal bleeding and other infections. Most damage as a result of nuclear radiation was permanently and can lead to death within a few months of exposure.
- Things you should do during a Radiation emergency
During a radiation emergency, such as fears of a nuclear plant explosion, people are usually advised to create a “shelter place”. This can be your home, office or perhaps elsewhere in the room is limited.
To keep your shelter in safe place, close and lock all the doors and windows, turn off fans, air conditioners, or any items that can carry air from the outside, and monitor the latest developments through radio or television.