Radiation Good, Bad, Indifferent

I saw a blog on fellow chiropractors site that I follow, and thought I’d point you all to it, as he has a good point. I also wanted to add my two cents and discuss it a little.

X-rays, and the technology behind them have given great benefit to healthcare. The technology has come far enough that it is portable and very safe. According to the American College of Radiology, no single diagnostic x-ray has a radiation dose significant enough to cause adverse effects in a developing embryo or fetus. Even direct abdominal x-rays. (source) I found a study in school that showed that radiology techs have better health than average. I wish I could remember where I read it. That’s not necessarily due to the radiation, but it is an interesting association anyway.

As far as what is bad radiation, here is a great site with good info. To sum up from there:

“The average total dose rate for the USA is 360 mrem a year. It has been estimated that your chance of dying from cancer increases 10% if you accumulate a total of 250,000 mrem. This would be over 3,000 mrem a year over 80 years…[and]…the risks from low levels of radiation may be overstated.”

So, you would need to get 800-900 x-rays taken every year for 80 years to possibly increase your risk at most 10%. You get more radiation from your regular organic food each year than 8-10 x-rays.

Now I’m not advocating that we all go out and radiate ourselves, but I do think that our society had developed an irrational fear or radiation. What do you think?

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