Radon health risks require testing

Posted on Posted in Household Tips

Since you can’t smell, taste or see radon gas that is present in most homes, how can you make sure your home is safe? The only way to know for sure is to purchase a radon test kit and measure the levels of radon in your home.

Outdoors, radon gas is diluted and doesn’t pose a health risk. The problem occurs when radon enters enclosed spaces like your home and accumulates to high levels, contaminating the air you breathe.

The amount of radon in homes across Canada varies widely. On average, seven per cent of homes are estimated to have high radon, but in some areas that number jumps to 20 to 40 per cent.

Radon exposure is the second-leading cause of lung cancer behind smoking. In fact, Health Canada estimates that over 3,000 people a year — more than eight a day — die of radon-related lung cancer. That’s why it’s essential that you test your home for you and your family’s health.

Your risk of developing lung cancer due to radon depends on its concentration in the air you breathe and the duration of exposure. Time between exposure and the onset of cancer is usually many years — all the more reason to test sooner rather than later. For smokers, the exposure to radon combined with tobacco use can cause a significant increase in their risk of lung cancer.

Fortunately, indoor radon levels can be reduced easily and affordably. Find more information and learn how to reduce radon in your home at www.canada.ca/radon.