What Can Happen If You Accidentally Drink Contaminated Water?

Contaminated Water

How sure are you that the water you’re drinking is safe for consumption? Have you had it tested? If you’re buying purified water from the store, how can you trust these companies that they’re bottling safe and parasite-free water? The obvious answer, of course, is that there’s no way you would have known what you’re drinking is clean or dirty. You are dependent on your water supplier, so hopefully, the supplier does its job of making sure that the water you drink is safe and clean.

If you leave near factories, there can be an industrial effluent treatment plant near you. These kinds of facilities make sure that the water pumped and released from industrial plants are not getting into the main water source untreated. They treat the effluent to make sure that by the time it reaches the water system, it is safe for consumption.

Yes, it does sound icky to think about that the water you are drinking could have come from a chemical facility. But these treatment plants are well-funded and well-researched to ensure that water, no matter its level of cleanliness, can be recycled for home use.

Water Contaminants in the U.S.

The most common water contaminants in the U.S. are aluminium, antimony, arsenic, barium, beryllium, cadmium, chlorine, copper, chromium, fertilisers, herbicides, and pesticides, fluoride, lead, microbial contaminants, nickel, nitrates and nitrites, perchlorate, pharmaceuticals, selenium, silver, thallium, and volatile organic compounds. In some cases, even the byproducts of the decontamination process can lead to a range of health issues. Contaminants can enter the water supply via various means. The ground can absorb the contaminants and lead them to a water source such as a river, lake, or stream. They can get into broken pipes and contaminate groundwater sources.

Contaminated Water

Health Effects of Contaminated Water

First, it’s important to note that aside from very specific cases, you won’t necessarily develop symptoms after you have taken a sip of contaminated water. Sometimes, your body will be able to process the contaminants in the water and remove it through your stool. It’s in the consumption of a large number of contaminants that your body will begin to react.

Healthy people might also survive drinking contaminated water. There are many factors to how dirty water can affect people. Some of the determinants are health, age, and physical condition. However, if you experience symptoms such as diarrhoea, gastrointestinal problems, dehydration, nausea, intestinal cramping, and aches, you have to consult your doctor immediately.

But even if you don’t have symptoms right now, this does not mean that you won’t develop health issues in the future. If you’ve been exposed to radium, for example, through the water you drink, this can be linked to cancer and heart diseases.

There is no way to know if the water you’re drinking is contaminated. Sometimes, the water may taste and smell differently. But most of the time, it will smell and taste the same, leaving no indication of contamination. To make sure that you and your family are safe, have your water tested regularly. Your municipal government should have an accredited water tester.

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