What Disease Can You Get From Drinking Contaminated Water?
Currently, the majority of the world’s groundwater supply is overused. Furthermore, we have polluted surface water to contend with, especially in under developed areas. These problems give rise to numerous waterborne diseases which, if not treated properly and on-time, can prove to be fatal. One of the proven methods is to invest in a high-quality water purifier. It will help defend you and your family against harmful waterborne diseases.
Even if you never plan to travel to a developing country, this water contamination diseases list can provide you with more helpful information than you might realize. There’s always a chance you could come into contact with these illnesses even in your own home or as close as the swimming hole down the street. Knowing the signs of these water contamination diseases can make a huge difference when it comes to timely treatment.
What Waterborne Diseases Can I Get if I Ingest Contaminated Water?
Dysentery is a combination of nausea, abdominal cramps coupled with severe diarrhoea. In cases of acute dysentery, one may also experience a high fever and traces of blood in the faecal matter. There are two types of dysentery—Bacillary dysentery, caused by bacteria and Amoebic dysentery caused by amoebae. When either of these is ingested through contaminated water or food, one will develop dysentery within a gestation period of four days.
Arsenic is a poisonous substance often released as wastewater by industrial units situated on the banks of rivers. Arsenicosis or Arsenic Poisoning is caused due to chronic exposure to small amounts of arsenic through drinking water. This disease is characterised by painful skin lesions (keratosis), which can progress to cancer. It can also affect your lungs, kidneys, and bladder.
- Trachoma (Eye Infection)
This infection is caused by bacterium Chlamydia Trachomatis that’s found in contaminated water. Trachoma results in a coarsening of the inner surface of the eyelids. This leads to pain in the eyes, lesion on the outer surface or cornea, and eventual blindness. Trachoma spreads because of poor sanitation and hygiene conditions.
- Typhoid fever
Across the world annually, around 12 million people are affected by Typhoid fever. This infection is caused by Salmonella Typhi bacteria. This disease is contracted by consuming contaminated food or water. The bacteria pass through the intestinal tract and can be identified in stool samples. Its symptoms include nausea, loss of appetite, and headache.
This disease is caused by worms that are spread by freshwater snails living in polluted water. It’s very common in rural areas where people use local water bodies for bathing and recreational purposes. The worms in the water penetrate into one’s skin while in contact with the contaminated water, causing infections in the liver, lungs, intestines, and bladder.
Cholera is an infection of the small intestine by the bacterium Vibrio Cholerae. This disease can kill within hours if not treated on time. Symptoms of cholera include diarrhoea and vomiting, as well as abdominal cramps and headache. According to the WHO, every year, there are 21,000 to 143,000 deaths worldwide due to this infection.
Diarrhoea is one of the most common diseases caused by water pollution. It is most often caused by water-borne viruses. But bacteria and parasites from water contaminated with faeces are also common causes. It results in passage of loose, watery stools that can cause dehydration and death to young children and infants.
Water pollution has resulted in increased breeding of parasite-carrying mosquitoes. Malaria is a disease caused by parasites, which are spread by female mosquitoes called Anopheles. When mosquitoes bite a person infected with malaria, they can spread the infection to other people. This disease causes high fever, headache, and shivering. In severe cases, it can even lead to complications like severe anaemia, coma, and death.
- Lead poisoning
Lead poisoning is caused due to consumption of water contaminated with lead, often coming from old pipes as well as surface water pollution. This disease is particularly harmful to children and can cause a number of health problems, including organ damage, nervous system disorders, anaemia, high blood pressure, kidney disease and problems with the reproductive system.
Prevention is better than cure! Here’s how you can steer clear from these diseases
People of all ages can be prone to the diseases mentioned above. However, you can keep these diseases at bay by practising proper hygiene. The simplest of all prevention measures is to consume pure drinking water. Safeguard your home. Dangerous diseases like lead and arsenic poisoning can be prevented by changing your water pipes or treating your domestic water tank regularly.
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