How Does Water Pollution Affect Humans?

In this article, we tackle the question How Does Water Pollution Affect Humans?

Quick answer: Water pollution causes water-borne diseases like cholera, typhoid, and Dysentery among others. These diseases lead to death of approximately 3 million people a year.

In addition, direct discharge of industrial waste in water bodies introduces hazardous compounds into the water causing devastating health effects like acute poisoning and immune suppression.

What are the main causes of water pollution?

The major causes of water pollution include;

  • Radioactive waste
  • Industrial effluent wastes
  • Marine dumping
  • discharge of untreated waste on freshwater bodies
  • Tankers Oil spills and Leakage of raw petroleum by ships during transportation
  • Natural disasters like earthquakes, flood, landslide, etc.
  • Plastics and polythene bags
  • Insecticides, pesticides, and herbicides

Details: How Does Water Pollution Affect Humans?

World Health Organization estimates that Contaminated drinking causes 485 000 diarrhoeal deaths yearly. Polluted water will also make you sick. It’s estimated that, every year, contaminated water sickens 1 billion people. The most affected are those from low-income communities because of their low financial status and residing near industries that pollute water sources.

Furthermore, groundwater pollution will compromise water quality of individuals who depend on wells. when humans ingest polluted water, they’ll suffer from water borne diseases and infections like fever, cholera, and typhoid. Human can also get Bacterial diseases because of drinking polluted water or coming into contact with fecal contaminated water. Individuals are likely to get diarrhea, abdominal pain, headache and Fever.

In addition, drinking, swimming, or accidentally swallowing contaminated water can expose you to algal blooms. Algal blooms produce harmful toxins that will make you sick. Exposure to this toxin can cause illnesses like rashes, respiratory problems, and stomach and liver illnesses.

Polluted water also damage plants and animals. Humans depend on plants and animals to improve nutrition. When the plants and animals are affected, human health will definitely suffer.

Industries dispose Heavy metals and other industrial waste that find their way in rivers and lakes. These water bodies are a source of water for humans and animals. When humans drink this contaminated water, they suffer immune suppression, acute poisoning, and reproductive failure.

Polluted water also causes Viral diseases. These diseases affect the liver. The signs and symptoms of viral diseases include appetite loss, discomfort, high fever, and fatigue. These diseases are fatal and can cause death. Hence, you should take action immediately.

Polluted water also causes Parasitic diseases like Cryptosporidiosis. The symptoms of this disease include vomiting, stomach cramps, and watery bowls.

How Can You Protect Yourself From Water Pollution?

You can do the following;

If you are using a private well as your main source of water, then you should install a whole house water system for well water. A whole house water system ensures all water that enters your house is free of contaminants and safe for drinking.

If you are using tap water, you can consider many options. For example, you can install Countertop Water Filters or a faucet water filter. These are ideal choices if you want a simple filtering solution but still delivers well. You can also consider them if you leave in apartment or a temporary residence.

In addition, if you’re a home owner, you can choose an undersink water filter or a wholehouse filtering solution. These options eliminate a wide range of contaminants to keep your family healthy.

Further, if you’re travelling, hiking, or suspect the source of any water you can use a filtered water bottle or a portable water purifier. These options ensure you get clean and safe water on the go. They filter water directly from unknown sources and make it drinkable.

How Can I Tell if My Water is Safe?

To find out whether your drinking water is contaminated, you can have it tested by the local water utility providers. The test outcome will inform you the contents of your water. Further, you’ll know the most appropriate action you need to take to make the water safe.

In addition, you should know that contaminated water could smell or taste different. Nevertheless, most contaminants have no odor or taste. Hence, you cannot tell by just looking or tasting weather the water is safe.

How Can We Prevent Water Pollution?

Its easy to blame others when it comes to water pollution. But, all of us are responsible in one way or the other. There has to be something we can do to reduce or even prevent water pollution. If everyone does his or her part, we’ll eventually emerge victorious.

So, What Can You Do?

Avoid or reduce the use of plastic. Plastic waste accounts for high pollution rate in water bodies like oceans and rivers. Plastic pollution has negative effect on marine life. When these creatures ingest plastic it causes gastric rupture, gut perforation, among other series issues, which eventually lead to death.

Another thing you can do is to avoid throwing waste products into water bodies. You can go an extra step and clean up the litter on beaches or lakes, and rivers. However, ensure you can safely collect the litter without endangering yourself.

You can also prevent water pollution by avoiding or reducing the use of pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers. When you use these elements excess, water pollution will occur. The chemicals in these products get to water systems through soil infiltration or surface runoff. Therefore, choose organic methods to control weed, pests, and diseases in your farm.

Furthermore, you can make a conscious decision to use only environmentally safe products. Each time you buy products like paints, medical supplies, cleaning material, and others ensure you get products that will reduce water pollution.


Water pollution is one of the greatest threat to human health. Humans can’t survive without clean and safe water. Unfortunately, ground water and other water bodies are facing serious water contamination. Industrial and domestic discharge, excessive use of fertilizers, pesticides, and other agricultural wastes are contaminating our water. As a result, spread of water-borne, bacterial, and viral diseases is on the rise.

In this article, we’ve discussed the actions you can take. In addition, you can remain safe by using any of the filtering solutions we’ve recommended.



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