Wed

02

Jul

2014

The Effects of Water Pollution on Health



Water contamination is commonly associated with starving children in developing nations; however it is also a rising problem in the United States and other developed countries. Due to failures of companies to meet environmental regulations pollutants and harmful metals are entering the country's drinking water.

Conditions Caused by Pollution or Water Contamination

Many diseases caused by water contamination go un-noticed because the effects take months or years to materialize. A high incidence of conditions such as specific types of cancer or miscarriages can be an indicator of regional pollution.

The following conditions all have potential causes of specific types of pollution. If an area has both a high occurrence of the condition and the water contains high levels of any of the chemicals or minerals associated with it then pollution or other contamination may be an underlying culprit.

Cancer

Arsenic

Barium

Lead

Manganese

Tetrachloroethylene (Dry Cleaning Solvent)

Copper

Zinc

Chlorine

Selenium

Chromium

Beryllium

Nickel

Radon

Radium

Kidney Damage & Organ Failure

Arsenic

Barium

Lead

Manganese

Tetrachloroethylene (Dry Cleaning Solvent)

Selenium

Chromium

Beryllium

Nickel

Nervous Damage

Arsenic

Barium

Lead

Manganese

Copper

Zinc

Chlorine

Selenium

Tooth Decay

Skin Irritation

Lead

Nickel

Heavy Mentals

Infection

Birth Defects and Fertility Problems (Male and Female)

Susceptibility to H1N1 (Swine Flu)

"Swine Flu Susceptibility Linked to Arsenic Exposure", Josh Hamilton, undated, 2009.

Based on Courtney D. Kozul, Kenneth H. Ely, Richard I. Enelow, and Joshua W. Hamilton. Low Dose Arsenic Compromises the Immune Response to Influenza A Infection in vivo. Environ Health Perspect. doi: 10.1289/ehp.0900911.

Areas of High Risk

Homes that are within the catchment of large farms, cities, coal mines, industrial plants, and other sources of pollution are particularly susceptible to contamination. In the US, people living within these areas should check the Environmental Protection Agency's report on the water quality of that system. The report includes a history of a water system's violations and the types of contaminant found there. Alternatively, any house's water can be tested for a reasonably low price depending on the testing company.

Signs of Contamination

It is possible to spot signs of water contamination before health defects set in. Pipe damage, chemical build up around taps and sinks, discolored water, and bad smelling or tasting water are all signs of pollution. Some of these can be filtered out with an inexpensive filter, while others will need a more expensive filter which removes finer particles. It is important to test the water before installing a filter as buying the wrong type of filter can be costly, ineffective, and eventually dangerous.

Some contamination may be so extreme that home filtration is not effective. In such cases it is important to switch to bottled water to prevent tooth decay, digestive problems, skin irritation and other acute health problems. If there are any pets in the household they should also receive bottled water if the pollution level is extreme enough to cause skin damage.

What to Do in Situations of Unlawful Pollution

If a household or an area has been severely harmed through a company's actions and failure to prevent harmful chemicals reaching the drinking water then they should seek legal action. Samples should be taken from the house or houses and all residents should switch to bottled water until the water has been declared safe to drink.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

The Environmental Protection Agency is charged with the task of protecting American citizens from pollution and contamination in their drinking water. The Clean Water Act was designed to do just this.

BNC101

Write a comment

Comments: 0

This is the sidebar.

Contact

 

This section is visible on every page of your website. The sidebar is a great place to put important information like contact details, store hours, or social media links. If you build an online store, the shopping cart will appear here.