There are several water-borne diseases that affect our health severely due to poor water quality. Contaminated water and poor sanitization expedite the process of contracting these diseases easily. Most water-borne diseases are caused by microbes residing in water bodies or when water comes in contact with organic/inorganic waste material thrown in the water.
Some of the common water-borne diseases are listed below:
Typhoid is a bacterial disease that can be transmitted through contaminated water. The symptoms of typhoid include diarrhea, stomach pain, and high fever.
It is important to prevent this disease by drinking clean and pure water or filtered water with chlorine added to it. You should also avoid eating unpasteurized milk products as these may contain Salmonella bacteria which causes typhoid fever in humans too.
Cholera is caused by the Bacterium Vibrio Cholerae. It causes mild to severe diarrhea, which can lead to dehydration and death if not treated quickly and correctly. Symptoms of cholera include:
- Stomach cramping followed by nausea, vomiting, and fever (often over 101 F)
- Diarrhea that may be bloody or mucus-like in appearance
Hepatitis A is a virus that causes inflammation of the liver. The symptoms of hepatitis A include fever, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Dark urine and clay-colored stool are also common signs associated with this condition. It may last for several weeks or months before resolving completely.
Hepatitis A can be fatal, in some cases, if not treated properly with medication or vaccination (the former being more effective).
Giardiasis is a disease caused by a single-celled parasite called Giardia Lamblia. It is spread through contaminated water and food, as well as contact with an infected person. It’s also known to occur in animals and has been linked to poor sanitation practices.
Giardiasis can cause symptoms such as:
- Abdominal cramps or pain
- Unwell feeling (malaise)
Amoebic dysentery is a disease caused by an intestinal parasite. It can be transmitted through contaminated water or food, but infections are more likely to occur when people drink raw (unpasteurized) water from lakes, rivers, or streams.
Symptoms include severe diarrhea, abdominal pain, and fever that usually begin two days after exposure to the parasite. If left untreated, amoebic dysentery can lead to death within two weeks if not treated quickly enough with antibiotics.
If you think you’ve contracted any water-borne diseases yourself or someone close to you has been infected through contaminated food or water supplies then seek medical attention immediately so they can receive treatment as soon as possible!
Using a water purifier at home ensures clean and safe drinking water to keep diseases at bay. However, make sure to use a water purification system from a brand that you can trust. Read carefully all the information shared by the brand before making the purchase. Also, ensure your RO water purifier is well maintained. Get servicing done on a regular basis to access clean and purified water to drink. However, whenever away from home make sure to take necessary precautions.
The best way to avoid getting sick is by using one of the following methods:
- Use bottled water, when available. Bottled water is usually cleaner than tap and restaurants will usually provide it if you ask.
- Wash your hands before eating or touching food! People who don’t wash their hands before eating may spread germs all over their bodies (and sometimes even onto other people’s possessions). This can lead to serious illnesses like food poisoning or pneumonia.
It is important to take precautions when it comes to water-borne diseases. It will help you stay healthy and prevent any potential infections.
Source: 8 Common Water Borne Diseases in India, August 2022, Mfine
7 Most Common Waterborne Diseases (and How to Prevent Them), May 23, 2019, lifewater.org