National Radon Action Month – What is Radon and How Does It Affect Your Dad’s Health?

The EPA named January as National Radon Action Month. Radon is not something you can smell. You can’t see it. It is, however, a dangerous radioactive gas that can be present in homes and lead to serious health issues. Has your dad’s home been tested for radon?

Elderly Care in West Palm Beach FL: Radon Action Month

Elderly Care in West Palm Beach FL: Radon Action Month

Understanding the Dangers of Radon.

Radon is a gas produced as other elements, such as uranium in bedrock, break down. It doesn’t have a long life, but it is produced continually as these elements decay. It can build up in buildings, especially in basements that are below the ground, and can make its way into underground water sources like springs and wells.

While you will never notice if radon is present, it is dangerous. Radon is a leading reason non-smokers develop lung cancer. According to the EPA, radon is responsible for more than 20,000 lung cancer deaths each year. Symptoms of lung cancer include a chronic cough, feeling tired, loss of appetite, pain in the chest, and coughing up blood.

A North Carolina study found that radon in water increased the risk of stomach cancer. This cancer is hard to catch in the early stages. Symptoms of stomach cancer can be harder to detect. They include indigestion, abdominal pain, weight loss, and nausea.

What if Radon is Detected?

It gets into the home through cracks in your foundation or walls and around pipes and cables that make their way from a basement to upper levels of a house. You can buy radon tests at many hardware stores and online. Your state may offer tests, too. The kits you do yourself don’t cost much.

If radon is found, your dad would need to call in professionals to install a mitigation system to remove radon. Corrective measures include ventilation fans or radon sump pumps.

Take the time to make sure your dad’s house is tested. Once you know, you can work with him. If he’s lived in the home for a while and radon is present, you should have him see a doctor and discuss the risk of developing these cancers. He may want to be tested to see if lung cancer is present.

A cancer diagnosis is frightening, but there are treatments that work effectively when cancer is caught early. If he needs help getting to and from his doctor’s office, caregivers can do that. Elderly care services can make sure he has rides.

In addition to transportation, elderly care services like appointment scheduling, medication reminders, and meal preparation will help. Call us to discuss your dad’s needs.

If you or an aging loved one are considering elderly care in West Palm Beach, FL, please call the caring staff at Activa Home Health Care at (561) 819-4112.  Serving Delray Beach, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Wellington, Jupiter, West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Lauderhill, Coral Springs, Pompano Beach and surrounding communities.

 

Sources:

https://www.epa.gov/radon/health-risk-radon

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27639278

 

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