Radon Exposure

Radon Exposure

What are the health risks of radon exposure?

The Environmental Protection Agency classified radon as a human carcinogen in 1988.
  • Today radon is the #1 cause of lung cancer among non-smokers in the U.S.
  • Smokers who are exposed to radon will significantly increase their chance of developing lung cancer.
  • Over 20,000 Americans die of radon-related lung cancer each year.
  • Breathing radon gas is a greater health risk than ingesting water that contains radon.
  • Radon poses a greater health risk to children than to adults.

The U.S. office of the Surgeon General recommends that all houses be tested for radon. Typically most houses are tested for radon at the time of sale, but radon should be tested periodically, as levels can change over time depending on changing outdoor conditions, and usage habits of below-grade indoor space.

While any exposure to radon can be considered potentially damaging, the EPA recommends that homeowners aim for radon levels below 2 picocuries per liter (2pCi/L).

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