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The Ways a Nuclear Blast Would Affect Your Health

We live in the age of advanced technology — the phone in your pocket has more processing power than Armstrong did during his moon-landing Apollo 11 mission. It’s amazing to think of how far we’ve come, but there are drawbacks. You might love the advancements made in medicine, gaming, and tech, but what about weaponry? Gone are the days of bayonets on the battle field — we’re now entering a time when nuclear weapons are on the rise.

Of course, nuclear weapons have been used before. Remember learning about the blast on Hiroshima? CNN reports about 70,000 people died just from the initial hit. Over five years, roughly 200,000 people died — and that’s just from one nuclear bomb.

So, what can you expect from a nuclear explosion? You might have some idea of the effects, but we’re here to share all of the ways your health may be compromised. And don’t worry, we have some survival tips, too.

1. Severely damaged ears and lungs

3D illustration of Lungs

3D illustration of Lungs Your lungs and ears would be severely affected. | iStock.com/yodiyim

Being within a hundred miles of a nuclear blast wouldn’t just affect your physical features — the pressure would mess with your insides, too. A passage from The Medical Implications of Nuclear War explains soldiers during World War I and II frequently experienced “blast lung” from explosions. Essentially, the pressure of a nuclear attack causes the chest to compress against the spine and then quickly release. This can cause hemorrhaging, fluid buildup in the lungs, and major issues with your heart, all most likely resulting in death.

And don’t expect your delicate eardrums to get away unscathed. One blast wave is enough to cause a rupture and permanent hearing loss.

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