Does ionizing radiation cause cancer?

Radiation of certain wavelengths, called ionizing radiation, has enough energy to damage DNA and cause cancer. Ionizing radiation includes radon, x-rays, gamma rays, and other forms of high-energy radiation.

Does ionizing radiation cause cancer?

Radiation of certain wavelengths, called ionizing radiation, has enough energy to damage DNA and cause cancer. Ionizing radiation includes radon, x-rays, gamma rays, and other forms of high-energy radiation. Ionizing radiation, such as gamma rays, x-rays, and radioactive particles, can cause cancer by damaging DNA. However, it is not known how this occurs or how many tumors are caused by radiation damage.

Not all types of radiation have been proven to cause cancer. Learn what we know about exposure to lower-energy forms of radiation and the risk of cancer. Ionizing radiation has enough energy to disrupt chemical bonds, which can cause direct genetic damage, Harris said. In contrast, non-ionizing radiation only causes “changes in vibrational and rotational energies within molecules,” he said.

This energy is dissipated in the form of heat. Ionizing radiation is any form of radiation with enough energy to separate electrons from atoms (i.e., ionize atoms).

Tami Arunachalam
Tami Arunachalam

Amateur travel trailblazer. Hipster-friendly food enthusiast. Proud twitter geek. Passionate beer guru. Evil twitter geek. Lifelong coffee maven.

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