One of the most harmful types of energy for the humans Is radiation. When we breathe it and live with it in very low levels, it is not expected to harm our health. For higher levels of radiation though, a gas mask is essential in order to protect our lungs by filtering the radioactive particles from reaching them.
Gas masks on their own are not able to stop radiation. What they can do, is filter it properly so that we do not breathe the particles produced by it when inhaling the contaminated air. Ionizing radiation which is the most hazardous, can cause damage to our health, particularly to the human skin and body organs, especially when it reaches our lungs and blood.
These are some of the best gas masks for radiation:
When it comes to dealing with radiation you have to be well-informed and prepared. A gas mask or a respirator (although highly effective), are not sufficient to protect your body and tissue from getting hurt when you get in contact with radiation.
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Can a gas mask protect you from radiation?
The answer is yes, although we should find out the best ways a gas mask can protect a person from getting health issues in case of radiation. To learn how to use a gas mask properly, we have to make sure that we know exactly how it protects us from radiation.
A gas mask will allow the user to avoid inhaling the radioactive particles that will probably reach the lungs during a radiation blast. It can filter the air that gets through the mask, and it can clean and purify it so that it can be safely inhaled by the user.
The sealing of the mask (assuming we have a full-face gas mask, like the CDR 4500 Elite Gas Mask) helps so that the face of the individual does not get in contact with the radiation. This way, we can rest assured that our eyes and face skin stay protected no matter what.
One thing that we should always have in mind, is the filters. We have to make sure that they have not expired, and that they are not clogged so that we can use the gas mask safely against radiation. Although most filters last for 5 or 10 years, their life expires after up to 50 hours of continuous usage, which is something we have to keep in mind during an emergency.
The life of the filter cartridges depends on the level of radiation. The higher the levels of radiation, the quicker the filters are going to need replacement. When it comes to contamination, radiation is one of the roughest types we can face. This is why we need to have several filter replacements available, such as the Filter Gas Mask Avon CBRN FM12, which is a set of three.
If there is a need for longer periods of air filtering, looking for a gas mask with a drinking tube would be the ideal solution. Masks like the Genuine Original Soviet Russian gas mask GP-5 can provide several more hours of air purification, without having to change any filters.
Types of radiation
There are three types of radiation, the Alpha, Beta and Gamma radiation. They are named after the levels of radioactive particles, starting from the lowest (Alpha), and going up to the highest (Gamma) which is the most dangerous of all three. Let’s find out more:
1 – Alpha Radiation
This type of nuclear radiation is considered the weakest of the three, and it is the easiest to deal with. Such type of radiation is the nuclear dust, which is caused after a nuclear blast, and can be filtered using thick materials that can block the dust, such as paper (the thickest type possible).
2 – Beta Radiation
The second type, Beta, is considered a light type of radiation which can be handled moderately easy, if we have the necessary equipment or materials. Gas masks for the particles, and thick materials such as wood would be a nice way to act against Beta radiation.
3 – Gamma Radiation
When it comes to the third type of radiation, the Gamma, then things get serious. The only way to stay protected from this type of radiation is by using a high quality gas mask, and a Hazmat Suit such as the DuPont TY122S White Tyvek Coverall Suit, in order to cover the entire body.
Gamma radiation should be avoided at all costs. No suit or gas mask guarantees that you are going to be safe. Laboratories around the world that work with Gamma radiation, take extreme precautions in order to prevent accidents or Gamma contaminations, because of the high risk level this type of radiation has.
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Why is radiation dangerous?
Getting in touch with radiation is extremely dangerous, no matter the type. Of course, the highest the level of nuclear radiation (such as Gamma) you have to deal with, the highest the possibility of health issues you might face.
When inhaled, radiation does not come out of the lungs or blood of a person, which means that he or she has to keep living with the radiation. Leaving the contaminated area doesn’t mean that you are going to be clear from radiation, once you inhale it.
The most difficult part when exposed to radiation, is the fact that it is going to irradiate the individual from the inside of his body. In such unfortunate occasions, the radioactive particles tend to stick to the lungs or blood, and they continuously corrupt the immune system of the person exposed to radiation.
If you happen to live in an area contaminated by radiation, my advise would be to get equipped with the highest quality gas mask you can afford, such as the 3M Mold Remediation Respirator Kit 69097 or something similar.
Dealing with radiation is considered an extreme emergency and should be taken into serious consideration, especially when it comes to protection.
Acquiring a gas mask, a respirator or a hazmat suit must be the priority of a person living in a radioactive place, in order to secure a good chance of survival.