This decay process leads to a more balanced nucleus and when the number of protons and neutrons balance, the atom becomes stable.
An alpha particle is simply a helium nucleus, which will quickly gather up 2 electrons and become a helium atom.
(Electrons are quickly accumulated when you rub a balloon on some material - perhaps your hair - and then place the balloon on a wall or ceiling.
Radioactive dating is a method of dating rocks and minerals using radioactive isotopes.
This method is useful for igneous and metamorphic rocks, which cannot be dated by the stratigraphic correlation method used for sedimentary rocks. Some do not change with time and form stable isotopes (i.e.
those that form during chemical reactions without breaking down).