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November is National Radon Awareness Month.

Manitoba has been tested to have the second highest levels of radon exposure in the country, tied with Yukon.

Pam Warkentin, Executive Director of the Canadian National Radon Proficiency Program, says radon is an invisible, odourless and tasteless radioactive gas that in the long run, can make a person very sick.

"Radon is a gas that's linked to lung cancer. It is naturally occurring, it comes from the ground, but it can sneak into our homes and build up into higher levels, which is now linked to lung cancer."

Warkentin says radon is the leading cause of lung cancer for non smokers.

"We still know smoking is the first cause of lung cancer, but it also contributes to smokers cause of lung cancer. So, someone who is a smoker is at greater risk of getting lung cancer, if they are exposed to high levels of radon."

One of the reasons November is used as radon awareness month, is because most homeowners have their homes closed/sealed up for the season.

"It is a good time to put a test in and leave it while your in the house during the winter time to get an estimate of your levels."

Warkentin says that a test kit is very easy to obtain.

"You can get them from the lung association, cancer societies, or we have a number of certified professionals that sell them. We encourage people to test for a long term duration, for a minimum of 91 days. They can purchase it, and put it in a place where they spend time regularly. Leave it for three months, package it up and send it to the lab."

According to Warkentin, many people don't take radon serious, because it is not immediate.

"It's not exploding in our face, it's nothing we can see. And then the cause of link to sickness, is also not immediate. It takes a long time to actually get diagnosed with lung cancer, but you need to take action today to prevent that from happening in the future."

The recommendation is to test every 5 years.