Many things are especially important during pregnancy, such as eating right, cutting out cigarettes and alcohol, and being careful about the prescription and over-the-counter drugs you take. Diagnostic x -rays and other medical radiation procedures of the abdominal area also deserve extra attention during pregnancy.
There is scientific disagreement about whether the small amounts of radiation used in diagnostic radiology can actually harm the unborn child, but it is known that the unborn child is very sensitive to the effects of things like radiation, certain drugs, excess alcohol, and infection. If radiation or other agents were to cause changes in these cells, there could be a slightly increased chance of birth defects or certain illnesses, such as leukemia, later in life.
It should be pointed out, however, that the majority of birth defects and childhood diseases occur even if the mother is not exposed to any known harmful agent during pregnancy. Scientists believe that heredity and random errors in the developmental process are responsible for most of these problems.
There are, however, rare situations in which a woman who is unaware of her pregnancy may receive a very large number of abdominal x -rays over a short period. This is important for many medical decisions, such as drug prescriptions and nuclear medicine procedures, as well as x -rays.
According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, x -rays are generally safe during pregnancy, but there is quite a bit of controversy surrounding this issue. X -rays can give your health care provider important and even life-saving information about numerous medical conditions.
In weeks 11 through 17, at the 5-10 rad dose, “Potential effects are scientifically uncertain and probably too subtle to be clinically detectable.” Though ACR notes that you can have IQ damage over the 10 rad mark, increasing with exposure.
Even if you are not pregnant, wearing a lead apron will help protect you from the risk of genetic damage to your reproductive organs. If you are around radiation at work, wear a film badge to monitor the amount of exposure you receive.
Also, the dose of radiation in dental X -rays is so low there's virtually no risk to the unborn baby. X -rays allow doctors to observe specific body parts with high precision, including the bones and organs.
It’s clear that, if there’s a medical emergency, diagnostic techniques like these are imperative for giving an accurate diagnosis. However, rest assured that the latter only occurs if the mother is exposed to radiation levels equal to or greater than 10 rads.
Either way, to conclude, we’ll offer the exact data regarding harmful radiation levels. For the radiation levels to affect the fetus, they must be equal to or greater than 10 rads, also known as 100 milligrays (may).