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How do you prepare to survive a nuclear war?

What if a nuclear warfare breaks out? What can a common person or a family prepare for surviving a nuclear war? Only factual content with research backup.

Nuclear warfare is a terrifying scenario that could happen at any time, especially with the rising tensions between some of the world's nuclear powers. If a nuclear attack does happen, it is important to know what to do before, during, and after the blast to increase your chances of survival. Here are some tips based on reliable sources:

- Before a nuclear attack, make a plan with your family and friends on how to communicate and where to meet in case of an emergency. Stock up on non-perishable food, water, and first aid supplies, and store them in a cool, dry place. You should aim to have at least one gallon of water per person per day, and enough food to last for two weeks. You should also have a radio, preferably one that is crank- or solar-powered, to receive emergency information.  

- Get pharmaceutical stockpile for radiation emergencies

This publication from WHO focuses on pharmaceuticals for treating radiation exposure and addresses the governance and management of such a stockpile. A typical radiation emergency stockpile will include the following medicines: 
Stable iodine, administered to prevent or reduce the exposure of the thyroid to radioactive iodine; Chelating sand decorporating agents (Prussian blue, applied to remove radioactive caesium from the body and calcium- / zinc-DTPA used to treat internal contamination with transuranium radionuclides);
Cytokines used for mitigation of damage to the bone marrow, in case of acute radiation syndrome (ARS); and
Other medicines used to treat vomiting, diarrhoea and infections.

- During a nuclear attack, seek shelter immediately. If you are outdoors, look for the nearest building or structure that can provide some protection from radiation and fallout. Ideally, you should go to a basement or an underground facility, or at least to the center of a large building. Stay away from windows and doors, and cover any exposed skin with clothing or blankets. If you are in a car, park it under a bridge or in a tunnel, and stay inside. If you are near the blast site, lie down on the ground and cover your head with your arms until the shockwave passes.  

- After a nuclear attack, stay inside your shelter for at least 48 hours, or until you receive official instructions from the authorities. Do not go outside unless it is absolutely necessary, as radiation levels may be very high. If you do go outside, wear protective clothing and a mask, and avoid touching any debris or dust. When you return to your shelter, remove your outer clothing and shoes, and put them in a sealed plastic bag. Shower or wash yourself with soap and water, and rinse your eyes and mouth. Do not eat or drink anything that may have been contaminated by fallout. Ration your food and water supplies, and listen to your radio for updates and guidance.   

Surviving a nuclear war is not impossible, but it requires preparation, awareness, and common sense. By following these tips, you may be able to save yourself and your loved ones from the worst effects of a nuclear attack.

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