We dragged Little Miss and Mister on an "adventure" tonight. That's a code word we use to convince children to go somewhere that will probably be boring. (It has the added bonus of playing along with the song from the inspiring television docudrama, "The Cat in the Hat.") Our adventure was to a city-sponsored open house on radon gas since I apparently don't have enough weird things to worry about. I am going to share my newfound knowledge with y'all so I won't have to worry alone. (Also, it has serious health implications so it is blog appropriate.)
Radon is an invisible odorless gas that can seep into homes and...sit there. It is a heavy/"big-boned" gas so it tends to accumulate in "hot spots" like basements (which are actually cold but I try not to nit-pick). Radon is produced by uranium decaying in the dirt all around us which means it is radioactive which means it can cause serious cell damage in your lungs which means...it is the second leading cause of lung cancer (I'm guessing that is a pretty distant second after smoking. Don't smoke!)
Luckily(?), this is all preventable. Simple, inexpensive tests are available at most home improvement stores. (We got a free one at the open house! It is sad what makes "grown-ups" excited.) That is where the luck runs out. If your home shows high radon levels you will then have to either: (a) train your child to hold their breath in the basement or (b) fork over $1200 for a venting system. Oh happy days.
Anyone have more experience with this? Please share!