What is radon?
What is Radon?
Radon is a naturally occurring gas that comes from the breakdown of uranium in soils and rocks. It is a colorless, odorless, and invisible gas that rises up from the soil and can enter our homes through small cracks in floors or walls, construction joints, or gaps in foundations around pipes, wires, or pumps.
Long-term exposure to high radon levels can increase your risk of developing lung cancer. When radon gas decays, it breaks down into radioactive particles that can get trapped in your lungs when you breathe. As the particles continue to decay, they release small bursts of energy that can damage lung tissue and may lead to lung cancer in some people.
Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that radon causes 21,000 lung cancer deaths each year in the U.S. The risk of developing lung cancer from radon depends on the level of radon you are exposed to over your lifetime, whether or not you are a smoker, and other genetic and environmental factors. Learn more about the increased health risks of smoking and radon exposure. Visit Project Filter for smoking cessation resources.