Med Pro Radiation MoniteringTwo doctors place a plastic cover on a woman’s face before an x-ray

What Materials Block Radiation?

In some workplaces, radiation contamination poses a significant concern. Fortunately, radiation shield products can help protect workers at medical facilities, nuclear power plants, and industrial buildings. 

The kind of radiation shield product you need depends on the type and amount of radiation at your facility. For example, indirect ionizing radiation includes gamma rays, x-rays, and neutrons. These uncharged particles require the removal of one electron to create free radicals.

Direct ionizing radiation, on the other hand, consists of charged particles such as alpha rays or electrons that can act directly on the atoms or molecules.

Because of the differences between these two types of radiation, certain shielding products are required for blocking specific particles and elements. At Med-Pro, we’re committed to providing easy-to-use dosimeters for radiation regulation. Here’s our guide to using shielding products.

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How Shielding Products Work

Shielding products work because of attenuation. Attenuation involves the gradual loss of intensity as a substance or particle flows through a barrier.

For example, sunglasses diminish the power of sunlight as light beams pass through the dark-tinted glasses. This is an exact example of how sunglasses can facilitate attenuation. 

When it comes to radiation shielding, the goal is to attenuate harmful particles from your surrounding environment that can interact with and destroy healthy DNA cells.

a biologist uses a centrifuge

Here’s how barriers eliminate some forms of radiation:

  • Electron substances: barriers can deactivate charge particles. Barriers render these particles harmless by absorbing all of their energy.
  • Neutrons: elastic and inelastic scattering can reduce their potency. 
  • X-rays and gamma-rays: photo-emission exposes the metal to light to release an electron. The goal is to scatter while spreading out the particles to diminish their concentration and pairing. 

Different establishments choose different types of shielding materials. Some determining factors include:

  • Strength
  • Thermal properties
  • Financial efficiency
  • Effectiveness, and 
  • Resistance to damage in specific industry settings

Related: Radiation Protection Problems Solved

How to Block Gamma Radiation and X-Rays

The only factor that matters when it comes to x-ray shielding is density. This is why lead aprons and blankets are the most effective shielding material to fight off x-rays and gamma-ray. 

After all, lead has a very high number of protons in each atom (82 to be specific), which makes it a very dense metal shield. You can also adjust the thickness according to the amount of protection that you need. Make sure to be careful; an inadequate adjustment may still allow a small number of x-ray or gamma particles to pass through.

How to Block Alpha and Beta Radiation

Alpha beta radiation diagram

When it comes to alpha and beta shielding, the primary focus should be placed on density and not thickness. Alpha particles can be easily blocked by plastic or a 1 inch paper.

Plastic material can stop beta particles, and this is a more affordable strategy. Even though lead is very dense and thick, it does not have much of an effect against alpha and beta radiation.

How to Block Neutron Radiation?

Neutrons are unique particles; they have no charge and can easily pass through dense material like lead more quickly than other particles. To protect against neutron radiation, it’s advisable to obtain a substance with a low atomic number.

The best component to consider is hydrogen because it’s the lightest element on the periodic table. When neutron radiation interacts with this low-density barrier, neutron particles cannot pass through.

Since blocking the neutron can cause low-density material to release gamma rays, it’s best to use a protective barrier with both low and high-density materials.

Low-density material can cause gamma-rays to scatter, and high-density material can prevent the gamma-ray from even being released. This potent combination can help provide an unbreakable shield against neutron radiation.

Related: Which radiation-monitoring ring dosimeter to buy?

How to Measure Radiation Dose

an x-ray of someone's teeth with wisdom teeth coming in

It’s important to test out the efficacy of your radiation barriers. Fortunately, a lot of workplaces have area monitoring where they utilize quality tools to detect x-ray or gamma radiation. 

If there is a high amount of radiation in the workplace, then employees must wear radiation dosimeters to ensure that they don’t absorb too much. The dosimeter records the amount of exposure and shows the number to an expert who will analyze the data. With Med-Pro, you can easily view results online.

If the dose rate exceeds more than 400 microsieverts in any week, then you’ll need to take steps to increase protection at your facility. No one should absorb over 20 MSV of radiation per year.

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Where to Purchase a Dosimeter?

Med-Pro has state-of-the-art radiation detection badges with an accredited lab to provide results. We can help any business become OSHA compliant. 

With Med-Pro, you can establish a secure radiation monitoring system along with safety equipment to ensure that employees are well taken care of. 

We offer competitive prices and attention to detail when it comes to safety. Our radiation badges can ensure that employers maintain compliance in both federal and state regulatory standards. This is especially important if you own a dental, medical, or science research facility.

In Conclusion

Radiation can get into DNA and cause mutations, potentially leading to cancer and other ailments. High dosage can cause symptoms of nausea, vomiting, headaches, dizziness, and much more. 
Because of the detrimental health effects of radiation, it’s imperative for employees to wear a protective barrier to prevent radiation poisoning. Don’t forget that even if you use protective barriers, you must regulate how much radiation goes into your body. To do this, use dosimeter products. If you are looking for an easy and safe solution in the dosimetry marketplace, check out MedPro Radiation Badge today!

How to Block Neutron Radiation?

Neutrons are unique particles; they have no charge and can easily pass through dense material like lead more quickly than other particles. To protect against neutron radiation, it’s advisable to obtain a substance with a low atomic number.

The best component to consider is hydrogen because it’s the lightest element on the periodic table. When neutron radiation interacts with this low-density barrier, neutron particles cannot pass through.

Since blocking the neutron can cause low-density material to release gamma rays, it’s best to use a protective barrier with both low and high-density materials.

Low-density material can cause gamma-rays to scatter, and high-density material can prevent the gamma-ray from even being released. This potent combination can help provide an unbreakable shield against neutron radiation.

Where to Purchase a Dosimeter?


Med-Pro has state-of-the-art radiation detection badges with an accredited lab to provide results. We can help any business become OSHA compliant. 

With Med-Pro, you can establish a secure radiation monitoring system along with safety equipment to ensure that employees are well taken care of. 

We offer competitive prices and attention to detail when it comes to safety. Our radiation badges can ensure that employers maintain compliance in both federal and state regulatory standards. This is especially important if you own a dental, medical, or science research facility.

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