Daily Exposure to Radiation: How Geiger Counters Can Save Your Life

Posted on November 28, 2022

Geiger Counters


Radiation is a type of energy that can manifest in various forms, some of which are more hazardous than others. Some radiation has the ability to move at the speed of light through space, and its origins can be either natural (such as the sun) or man-made (like nuclear reactors). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, regardless of origin, when our body absorbs radiationrit in high amounts, it can cause harm by causing DNA damage within our cells. within our cells. This, in turn, can result in the development of cancer or the failure of organs.  

According to findings from the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the average annual dose of radiation received by the general population is around 620 millirems (mrem). Almost half of it comes from natural sources, also referred to as "background" sources, the majority of which is radon found in the air outside. The other half originates from man-made sources, with medical operations, such as X-rays, typically accounting for the largest proportion of this type of radiation. 

Products for the general public, like televisions and mobile phones, can also contribute trace amounts. Accidents at nuclear power plants and the testing of nuclear weapons have the potential to expose the public to potentially harmful quantities of radiation in a short amount of time. 

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission National Research Council (NRC) has created regulations for radiation exposure in order to protect the public's health and safety. People who work with radioactive materials are permitted to be exposed to an additional 5,000 mrem per year, while members of the public are permitted to be exposed to an additional 100 mrem per year above and above the ordinary average. 

Radiation exposure at low levels is typical and inevitable for the majority of people. On the other hand, there are some steps you can take to lessen the likelihood that you will be subjected to significant levels of radiation over time. People residing in the United States are exposed to a variety of radiation sources. 

Geiger counter is a piece of equipment that can detect ionizing radiation. Ionization of the inert gas that is contained within the machine is achieved by moving radioactive elements through it in a circular motion. When compared to radioactivity itself, the ions that are produced can be easily recognized. Being in close proximity to a nuclear power plant or working in an atmosphere where radioactive elements are widespread makes a person extremely vulnerable to the harmful effects of radiation exposure. Radiation detection equipment such as Geiger counters ensures that you are exposed to safe levels of radiation.  

Let’s take a closer look at two very important industries where Geiger counters are of great importance. 

Medical Imaging 

In 1980, there were just three million CT scans performed in the United States, but today there are over 80 million CT scans performed there each year. This improvement has made it possible to do away with the need for exploratory surgeries, which were historically widespread, as well as a great deal of other intrusive and possibly dangerous procedures. However, this has resulted in increased radiation exposure. Since approximately 1980, there has been no change in exposure to ionizing radiation from natural or background sources. However, total radiation exposure per capita in the United States has nearly doubled, and most experts believe that the primary reason for this is an increase in the use of medical imaging. 

Although there does not appear to be a significant risk to health from medical radiation, it is still a good idea to keep your exposure to medical radiation as low as possible. You can do this by having a conversation with your doctor about high-dose diagnostic imaging, thinking about a radiation test with a lower dose, having less frequent testing if it is possible, and not asking for scans that are not necessary. 

Plane Travel 

About five percent of the average person's exposure to background radiation in the United States comes from cosmic radiation, which is produced by the sun and other stars, including our own. When we fly, we leave the protection that the atmosphere provides, and as a result, we are subject to exposure to trace amounts of radiation. The quantity of radiation we are exposed to on a journey across the country is significantly lower than the amount we take in during a single chest x-ray.  

The dose of radiation is proportional to both the altitude at which it is received and the distance from the equator at which it is received. The higher the altitude, the higher the dose. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that the average dosage of cosmic radiation that a person receives in a year account for 11% of their total annual exposure to radiation from all natural sources. This is true regardless of whether or not they fly. 

Keep Your Radiation Exposure Level Safe with S.E. International 

When working in an industry where you are exposed to elevated levels of radiation, protecting your health and safety is of great importance, and we at S.E. International have all the tools and equipment you need to work in a safe environment. To place an order for your Geiger counter or other form of radiation detection equipment, fill out our contact form


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *