5 facts about radiation you never knew

(BPT) – Radiation — it’s not something most people think about very often, and when they do, their thoughts usually turn to radiation’s effects as they are portrayed in the movies. These being namely that exposure to radiation will either turn them into a hideous monster or a superhero.

The truth is, however, that while radiation is great fuel for any Hollywood script, it’s more than sci-fi fodder. It’s part of your real world. And while it is not something to be feared – as it is in the movies – it is something you should be aware of. To that end, here are five things you may not know about radiation.

* You are exposed to radiation every day. One third of the U.S. population lives in a “nuclear shadow” area, meaning they live within 50 miles of a U.S. nuclear power plant. Many people are also exposed to radiation every day through their work as dental assistants, medical practitioners, radiology technicians, chiropractors, etc.

* Radiation can come from man-made, terrestrial or cosmic sources. Not all radiation comes from man-made technology. Naturally occurring radiation is present in Earth’s crust as well as in the floors and walls of our homes, schools and places of work. It is even found in the food we eat and drink, and the air we breathe. Our own bodies — muscle, bones and tissue — contain naturally occurring radioactive elements as well.

* Radiation comes in multiple forms. Non-ionizing radiation, like that found in microwaves, radio waves and visible or infrared light, is largely harmless due to its low energy levels. Ionizing radiation (found in gamma rays, X-rays and other sources) has higher energy levels and can be harmful to the body if you are exposed to large doses or for a long period of time.

* You can track radiation levels around you. Radiation is invisible, but that doesn’t mean you have to be blind to it. The Dosime device is a hybrid smart home and wearable personal dosimeter that captures real-time radiation exposure in the environment. The accompanying app provides an immediate assessment of the ionizing radiation present in the homes, buildings and spaces you live, work and play that can potentially impact your health without your knowledge. Dosime allows you to access accurate, reliable, easy-to-understand radiation information in real time to manage potential health risks and ensure peace of mind.

* You bring radiation into your home every day with things you purchase. Your cat’s litter box is a common radiation source in your home, while Brazil nuts and bananas also give off small levels of radiation. The glossy paper appearing in the magazines you read requires a radioactive finish to achieve that shine. The glaze used to decorate those antique jars could be radioactive if the uranium levels are high enough. Even your new granite countertops are a source of radiation as granite is one of the best rock sources for retaining natural radiation.

Radiation is around you every day, but that doesn’t mean you have to fear it. Remember, most radiation is naturally occurring and your exposure to it won’t turn you into a monster, even if a super power would be pretty cool. To learn more about the Dosime device and to see how it can help you monitor radiation levels around you, visit

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The worst nuclear power plant accident in history, one that will affect the planet for thousands of years to come, read on to find 10 interesting facts about Chernobyl.

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