With the increase in nuclear energy used in industrial development, and research and technology, the danger of exposure to radiation is a concern. Due to its life span and the ability to sustain, radioactive ions cannot be completely destroyed. As such treatment or cure due to exposure is almost an impossible task. The only way to treat radioactive exposure is through protective measures and some medicines. Mentioned below are a few measures one can adopt to minimize the effect of radioactive exposure.
Time: Exposure to radiation can be minimized by reducing the time spent near the source or substances.
Distance: Keeping distance from the radioactive source is a simple way to minimize the effect of exposure. Instead of handling a radioactive source with the hands, it is advisable to use forceps.
Shielding: Radiation shielding usually refers to shielding of bodily tissues against the penetration of radioactive rays. These shields are often termed as biological shields, as they provide a barrier between the radioactive source and the human body. It is a mass of absorbing material placed around the radioactive source or a reactor to minimize the radiation level. In order to prevent radiation, it is necessary that the absorbing materials are built and placed as per industry compliance and measures. Using a “lead glass screen” and wearing “lead aprons” is another safe way to prevent exposure.
Medicines: Potassium Iodide (KI) and Prophylaxis are medicines to combat sickness due to radiation exposure. Potassium Iodide (KI) tablets are commonly kept in stock in nuclear power plants for rapid distribution. Potassium Iodide (KI) and Prophylaxis are easily available in any pharmacy and can be taken as per the dosage prescribed by a doctor. It is advised to take the medicine within three hours of exposure to radiation for better effect; however one may take within 10 hrs, but it can be less effective.
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