How long do you have to be exposed to radon to get lung cancer?

Is short term exposure to radon dangerous?

Breathing radon does not cause any short-term health effects such as shortness of breath, coughing, headaches, or fever.

How long does it take for radon to damage lungs?

Radon gas can damage cells in your lungs, which can lead to cancer. Radon is responsible for about 21,000 lung cancer deaths each year in the United States, though it usually takes 5 to 25 years to develop. Early signs and symptoms of lung cancer may include: persistent cough.

Can long term exposure to radon cause lung cancer?

Being exposed to radon for a long period of time can lead to lung cancer. Radon gas in the air breaks down into tiny radioactive elements (radon progeny) that can lodge in the lining of the lungs, where they can give off radiation. This radiation can damage lung cells and eventually lead to lung cancer.

What should you do if you are exposed to high levels of radon?

If someone has been exposed to high levels of radon over a long period of time, it is an especially good idea. Such persons may want to speak to their physicians about whether they should get regular health checkups or tests such as low-dose CT scans of their lungs to look for possible signs of lung cancer.

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How long do you have to be exposed to radon for it to be dangerous?

If a person has been exposed to radon, 75% of the radon progeny in the lungs will become harmless lead particles after 44 years. When a particle damages a cell to make it cancerous, the onset of lung cancer takes at least five years, but often takes 15 to 25 years and even longer.

Is it OK to live in a house with radon?

Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer after cigarette smoking. If you smoke and live in a home with high radon levels, you increase your risk of developing lung cancer. Having your home tested is the only effective way to determine whether you and your family are at risk of high radon exposure.

What are signs of radon poisoning?

Possible symptoms include shortness of breath (difficulty breathing), a new or worsening cough, pain or tightness in the chest, hoarseness, or trouble swallowing. If you smoke and you know you’ve been exposed to high levels of radon, it’s very important to quit smoking.

Does radon make you tired?

Additional, long-term symptoms of radon gas exposure include loss of appetite, weight loss, and fatigue. It’s important to be aware of the symptoms above because not only do they indicate symptoms of radon exposure, but consistent exposure to radon can also lead to lung cancer.

Can opening windows reduce radon?

Opening windows improves air circulation and ventilation, helping move radon out of the house and mixing radon-free outside air with indoor air. … Running a window fan in a basement window reduces radon levels, but only if the fan blows air into the basement.

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What percentage of lung cancer is caused by radon?

Major scientific organizations believe that radon contributes to approximately 12% of lung cancers annually in the United States. It is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Among smokers, the increase in risk is dramatic due to the synergistic effects of radon and smoking.

Is a radon level of 5 bad?

Radon levels are measured in picocuries per liter, or pCi/L. Levels of 4 pCi/L or higher are considered hazardous. Radon levels less than 4 pCi/L still pose a risk and in many cases can be reduced, although it is difficult to reduce levels below 2 pCi/L.

Can radon cause mental illness?

Mental health experts generally agree that people dealing with the presence of high levels of radon in their homes are likely to have related psychological problems if they are prone to other forms of stress.