Radiation Panic: Rumors Among Children

Japanese children


In Japan radiation fears after the 3.11 disaster affect not only adults, but also children. Even small children in elementary grades use special terms such as “internal exposure to radiation”, “hot spot”, and “radiological dosage”. Recently among these school children, baseless urban legends develop.


For example;

1) If you drink water from the faucet at school, you will have cancer on your throat and die.

2) If you drink tea, you will die.

3) If you lose your hair when your scratch your head, you are internally exposed to radiation.

4) If you feel something slimy when you put your finger into your nose, it’s a bad sign. If you have a nosebleed, it’s hopeless.

5) If you have a lot of pimples, that’s the proof that you have been exposed to radiation.

6) When you go close to a hotspot, your get the taste of iron in your mouth.

One day a student who accidentally had a nosebleed rushed to his school’s infirmary and asked the nurse, “Am I going to die?” And another day, a lot of children were in an uproar after seeing raindrops falling from the roof of the school gymnasium, saying “Those raindrops are full of radiation!”

Children sometimes just have a smattering of knowledge gleaned from adults’ conversations about radiation issues. These children who don’t fully understand radiation make up their own childish rumors and get themselves into a panic. It might be very important for adults to educate children and pass on to them accurate information..


Source: Nikkan SPA