Humans are composed of about %60 of water. Drinking it and staying hydrated, then, is an important part of life on one of the most fundamental levels. In developed countries, the inhabitants have the luxury of having water pumped right into the homes. This is beneficial because this saves from having to walk blocks or miles to the nearest tap or well. Another benefit and this may be more important, is that the water that reaches the faucet is governed to be clean and free from water-borne diseases.
There are private companies in charge of distributing water to communities and noncommunities, like transient locations – parks, gas stations, motels, and restaurants, for examples, and nontransient locations – like schools, buildings, and hospitals. These companies are required by law to ensure that the water they are providing to the public is free from bacteria and certain chemicals. The United Nations has estimated that each person requires between 20-50 liters of water a day not only for drinking but also for hygiene and cooking, too. In order for people to lead healthy and sustainable lives so must their water.
The United States’ Environment Protection Agency (EPA) has strict regulations when it comes to the water that is provided to the public.
They have a list of contaminants and maximum levels that they should be present in the water. Beyond contaminants, too, the EPA has required amounts of other products that may be found in drinking water. Some chemicals may be required to keep the water from spoiling in its stored form. Things like disinfectants and disinfectant byproducts are necessary to add to the water to keep it from supporting life that may be hazardous to human life. The disinfectants and their byproducts, though, if kept under the legal limit will not be harmful.
There are a variety of illnesses that could arise out of drinking contaminated water.
The period of exposure may vary depending on the intensity of that exposure. If any water features contaminate over the legal limit, the drinker may find himself suffering from one or multiple ailments. A majority of contaminates may cause damage to the digestive system either causing polyps in the intestines, or distress in the GI tract. Kidney and Liver failure is also common. Metals found in the water can cause damage to the nervous system in children like slowed development, and blue-baby syndrome. Blood issues can arise, too, like high blood pressure, anemia, and low blood sugar.
All of these contaminates come from different sources before leaking into a stored water container. Farms leak pesticides and insecticides into rivers and streams that enter public drinking water. Refineries and factories also produce discharge a plethora of chemicals that can cause health issues but can also be broken down to cause different issues.
It is important for a home to understand and acknowledge the different chemicals that are present in their water.
If there is doubt, then filters can be purchased to either hook directly into a faucet or can store water in the fridge. Filtration systems are also available at home improvement stores to help filter all of the water entering the house. Depending on one’s budget and location, these steps may be necessary to keep the family healthy and hydrated.