Protection and the influence of beta radiation on the human body

Effects of on the body beta radiation

Beta radiation is a stream of positrons or electrons formed in the process of disintegration of the atomic nuclei of radioactive substances. The basics of nuclear physics, mankind first met several decades ago. Over time, people learned to manage such small and invisible particles, to obtain from them not only harm but also benefit. How people get power have the ability to control invisible processes, especially for medicinal purposes.

Simultaneously with the beta particles, which are negatively charged, were discovered positively charged alpha particles, uncharged particles and gamma rays. Alpha and beta particles simultaneously with gamma-quanta form a radioactive radiation. These particles have different mass, energy, charge, degree of radioactivity and different effects on the human body.

Conducting research in nuclear physics, scientists have determined that these particles can have on the human body both negative and positive remedial effect.

The nature of beta radiation

Beta-rays are a focused beam of elementary particles with a negative or positive charge that is formed during the radioactive decay of nuclei. A beta particle is a positron or an electron, depending on the polarity of the charge. Sources of beta radiation is a radioactive isotope, with the direct decay of which produces a radiation.

Breaking away from the nuclei, beta particles have different energy and speed. The speed of these particles reaches 100 to 300 thousand kilometers per second. Only depending on the density of the medium in which beta particles are free to move, the distance is measured from a few centimeters to several meters. Such particles are able to move to a distance of several meters, in the tissues of the body penetrate to a depth of 2.5 cm. Due to their small size and low weight of the beta-particles move in a chaotic trajectory.

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Characterization of natural sources of beta radiation

Natural beta radiation consists of a stream of elementary particles that have a positive or negative charge. Some sources of beta radiation can be of natural origin. However, such radiation is not found and is one of the components of natural radiation.

Earth as it receives the radioactive radiation on its surface from outer space and has itself a natural radioactive field due to deposits in the earth’s crust radioactive substances. Such substances include chemical elements: yttrium, krypton, praseodymium, promethium, strontium, and cesium, which by radioactive decay strongly emit beta particles.

Characteristics of artificial sources of beta radiation

In addition to natural sources of beta radiation, there are also artificial sources of this radiation. Some of them obtained specifically for the solution of a number of industrial applications, including in medicine, but there are artificial sources that are received by man according to his great imprudence or rashness.

To artificial sources inadvertently include radiation accidents at nuclear power plants, accompanied by a large release into the environment of radioactive substances, the leakage of radioactive water, accidents in large nuclear ships, as well as leakage on the storage of radioactive waste due to irregularities in storage.

The influence of beta radiation on the human body

Beta radiation is when uncontrolled exposure can have on the fabric of the human body is very harmful influence from burns and radiation sickness to diseases with fatal outcome. Burns mainly affects exposed areas of the skin and the mucous membrane of the eye. The severity of damage of beta radiation depends on the duration of irradiation, the radiation level and the structure of the tissue.

When the release of radioactive substances into the body, the internal organs of a person exposed to danger from the inside.

In this case, ionization of the molecules with subsequent necrosis of cells, which ultimately leads to intoxication, sometimes fatal. Beta radiation is when an uncontrolled exposure is very dangerous. Such radiation penetrates tissue to a depth, how much is enough internal energy of the particles, while beta particles on its way to «infect» all molecules, which interact. Contaminated molecules are the cause of inflammatory processes in the body of the irradiated person.

In the human environment, the radioactive background fit to a normal existence, regulated. The norm for beta radiation is the amount of 0,2 µsv/h.

When the background radiation impact exceeds the indicator of the standards twice, in this place you can not stay more than thirty minutes. Otherwise there may be irreversible consequences for the body.

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The use of beta-radiation in medicine

Beta radiation due to its properties is widely used in medicine. In diagnostic and therapeutic applications of beta-radiation is used for:

  • x-ray survey of the vessels with a thin wall;
  • beta-therapy and radioisotope diagnostics of internal organs and the skin surface.

Also beta radiation is used in chemical industry, in engineering, archaeology and manufacture of automated systems.

Protection from beta radiation

For proper and safe handling of beta radiation, to protect and minimize the impact of such effect it is necessary to adhere to strict rules:

  • Shortening the location near a source of beta radiation.
  • Removal from the source of beta radiation as far as possible to reduce its impact. This rule is a basic.
  • Conduct periodic radiation control background of the working area.
  • The application of protective measures in the use of Plexiglas screens, glass, aluminum and other metals.
  • Breathing protection with gas masks.
  • Protection of exposed areas of the skin and mucous membranes of the eye.
  • The application of radioprotectors, when do you plan short-term work in the contaminated zone. These substances are taken in advance to mitigate exposure in the form of additives in food or injection. Abuse of radioprotectors is not desirable, as they can have harmful effects due to biochemical and physiological disorders in the body.
  • Full compliance with sanitary-hygienic requirements for buildings where there are sources of beta radiation, the observance of the basic rules of personal hygiene when performing work with radioactive substances.

In case protection from beta radiation was incorrectly or not applied in time, it is necessary to take urgent measures:

  1. To get out of the danger zone.
  2. To take all the dirty clothes and even shoes.
  3. Wash under clean water, with detergent.
  4. To consult a doctor for professional medical help immediately.
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To control radiation background in the house, but also to determine the radioactivity of the purchased products and goods as preventive measures it is desirable to have in the kit of the dosimeter.