5. Radon And Cancer

An odorless, radioactive gas that’s produced by the natural decay of uranium, radon is more common than you might think.

After smoking, it’s the leading cause of lung cancer in the United States, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, which has found that nearly one in three homes checked in seven states had radon levels over 4 pCi/L, the EPA’s recommended action level for radon exposure.

Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that comes from rock and soil; well water can also be a source of radon, as it’s water soluble. The only way to find out if there’s radon in your home is to test for it. Call the National Safety Council’s National Radon Hotline at (800) 767-7236, and they’ll send you a low-cost radon detector. Inexpensive models are also available at most hardware stores.

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Safer substitute: There’s no safe substitute for radon. You don’t want it in your home. Getting rid of it once you detect it is a job for professional radon mitigators.

This list was written by Melanie Haiken for Caring and was last updated on October 9, 2012.

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