There are many types of chemicals that can be found in tap water. Various chemicals can be introduced into your tap supply through water municipalities or through agricultural processes. Certain areas of Canada may be more affected than others, depending on proximity to farms and what type of water system each community uses, but almost all sources of tap water contain some type of impurities. You may be aware that your tap water supply contains chemicals and toxins, but it is important to know which ones they could be and how they can affect you.
Fluoride may be the most commonly found chemical in water. Most people believe that tap water with fluoride is healthier because of its association with clean and strong teeth. However, when consumed in excess, fluoride is toxic and can cause health problems. In high amounts, fluoride can cause considerable damage to the skin and eyes and can cause discomfort at lower amounts. Fluoride has also been linked to serious conditions such as respiratory disease or cancer.
Chlorine is another commonly found chemical that people may mistake for a beneficial chemical. Chlorine reduces parasites in water that cause bacterial infections such as E. coli, but it can also cause significant health problems in the long run. If exposed to high amounts of chlorine, it can cause burning of the eyes and dryness of skin and hair. Chlorine directly attributes to digestive problems, neurological impairment, migraines, asthmatic problems, and certain cancers. According to studies, the amount of chlorine in drinking water may also directly contribute to heart disease and atherosclerosis, or the hardening of the major arteries.
Chloramines are disinfectants used to treat drinking water and are most commonly formed when ammonia is added to chlorine to treat drinking water. The ammonia bonds to the Chlorine and in doing so changes the chemical properties; they call this combination Chloramines.Chloramines provide longer-lasting disinfection as the as the water moves through pipes to consumers. Chloramines have been used by water utilities since the 1930s. More than one in five Americans uses drinking water treated with chloramines. Many public water systems use chlorine as their secondary disinfectant. However, some have changed their secondary disinfectant to chloramines to meet disinfection byproduct requirements. Since then, consumers have raised questions about this switch in disinfection. See our article titled Everything you need to know about Chloramines for detailed information.
Arsenic is a dangerous metal that is virtually undetectable to humans in water, but is very common nonetheless. Arsenic can kill humans in high doses, but can also cause damage over the long-term in smaller amounts as well. Arsenic can cause certain kinds of cancer, such as cancers of the bladder, lungs, skin, kidney, nasal passages, liver, and prostate. Arsenic has also been linked to diabetes, due to its effects on the pancreas, which regulates glucose levels. Other effects can include thickening and discoloration of the skin, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting.
Lead is the one of the most common heavy metals that can enter your water. Lead is usually drawn into your tap water supply from the piping system or through the use of water softening. Drinking water with lead may eventually cause neurological diseases, kidney disease, and gastro-intestinal distress. Lead can also reduce your body’s ability to form blood. Lead toxicity is difficult to diagnose and contributes to a number of fatalities every year. It is very unhealthy to consume lead, even in small amounts.
There are other commonly found chemicals and toxins in tap water, so your water may contain more than just these elements. To effectively filter out these out from your tap water supply, you should install a whole house water filtration system. However, most whole house water filters do not remove fluoride. To specifically remove fluoride, you will need a special filter. A whole house water filtration system will remove these nasty toxins and chemicals from your household, so you can rest assured that you and your family will enjoy healthy drinking water without the side-effects. If health is a priority to you and your family, water filtration is a must.