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Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Why Nigerians Should Drink Treated Water

Water is an essential element our bodies need for proper digestion and prevention of dehydration. There is a need for continuous consumption of water since we lose water every day in the form of water vapor in the breath we exhale and in our excreted sweat, urine, and stool. Along with the water, small amounts of salts are also lost. We should not consume ordinary water from any source, but it should be treated water. 

A greater part of the inhabitants of this great country, Nigeria are not expose to treated water. We rely on drinking water from any available sources e.g wells, streams, boreholes without giving it appropriate treatment. 

Untreated water contains organisms called pathogens which are microscopic in nature and is capable of causing disease. 

Pathogens include viruses (comprising DNA or RNA with a protein coating), bacteria (single-celled organisms), protozoa (also single-celled, but with a distinct membrane-bound nucleus) and toxins released by algae (aquatic photosynthetic uni-cellular or multi-cellular species). 

Pathogenic contamination of water cause disease outbreaks and contribute to background disease rates in Nigeria. 

The harmful effects from pathogens that is present in untreated water range from mild acute illness, through chronic severe sickness to fatality. Waterborne, Water-washed and Water-based diseases kill millions annually. 

The World Health Organisation (WHO) stated that 2.16 million people died of diarrhoeal diseases globally in 2004, more than 80% of which were from low-income countries including Nigeria.

Some of the more common diseases that can be contacted by drinking untreated water are cholera, giardiasis, infectious hepatitis, typhoid, amoebic and bacillary dysentries and bilharzia.

The most common transmission route is the oral consumption route of pathogens, derived from human faeces or urine residing in contaminated water, including cleansing and washing water. Although many pathogens can live for only a short time outside the human body, waterborne transmission of resilient bacterial cysts and oocyte, together with direct pathogen transport, is a key infection mechanism. 

A range of water treatment approaches can improve the safety of drinking  water with regard to pathogenic contamination. 

If the government cannot provide treated water for the citizens and if you cannot afford undertaking the ultrafiltration processes, there is a simple technique you can apply to get a safe drinking water. Put the water in a clean pot and boil it to a temperature above 100'C. Bring the pot of boiled water down from the stove and allow it to cool. Then filter and put it in your Flash for drinking. This will help you from contacting waterborne diseases mentioned above.

Which do you prefer, to drink untreated water or treated water? Let's have your comments below. 

Joseph Etim

Joseph Etim (B. Tech) is a blogger, mobile web developer and a tutor with a zeal for positive effects.

Website: Pepetimsblog

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