You’ve probably heard several times that filtered water is better for you. However, you’ve probably taken a sip of water from the tap many times with no issues. But although unfiltered water doesn’t always cause harm, that doesn’t mean you should drink it.
If you’re asking yourself, “Is water safe to drink from the faucet?”, we’ll answer that question in the information below. Read on to learn more.
Is Water Safe to Drink from the Tap?
Generally speaking, it is safe to drink from public water systems. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) monitors all public water systems and enforces high health standards regarding particles and contaminants that could harm the drinking water.
Before drinking water leaves the water plant and transfers to your house, it goes through strict safety standards. However, that doesn’t mean that it has no contaminants. It just means that the level of contaminants in the water won’t create a dangerous health risk.
But with that said, sometimes accidents happen. A public water supply could get contaminated at any time, which could definitely cause severe illness. Thankfully you can feel a little better knowing that water suppliers have 24 hours to let customers know if there are any threats to their health due to poor water supply.
Common Contaminants Found in Public Water
If you’re wondering what kind of contaminants could be in your drinking water, here is a list below:
Perhaps one of the most common contaminants found in drinking water is lead. It’s a heavy metal that comes from the lead pipes and plumbing fixtures through which the water flows. Unfortunately, lead often becomes corroded, which seeps into the water as it transfers to the faucet in your home.
This type of problem is generally more common in cities that have old water systems. The harmful issue with lead is that it can cause behavioral and neurological issues in children and adults with poor health.
Just be aware that even if your home is new, that doesn’t mean that the water system is new. You could still receive water through the tap that contains lead.
Arsenic is a contaminant that can cause serious problems. There once was a time back in the 1960s when this contaminant was found in many water systems. Thankfully, in the early 2000s, the Environmental Protection Agency finally updated its standards to lower the arsenic levels using modern science.
Since that time, the arsenic levels have drastically reduced, but it’s still one of the contaminants that you have to look out for when drinking tap water.
Believe it or not, there are radioactive materials found in drinking water. Actually, radioactive elements naturally occur in water. However, they can also make their way into the water supply from nuclear weapons, medicine, and certain forms of energy.
It could also happen through improper waste storage and leaks. As a result of exposure to radioactive elements, a person could get cancer or experience kidney failure.
Even though nitrates are found naturally in plants and soil, it’s only at low concentrations. Unfortunately, nitrates have become a risky contaminant due to fertilizer. Since factory farms use groundwater to run off the fertilizer, it ends up in the drinking water.
The EPA tries to limit the nitrates within water to help lower the risk of illness. Nitrates are harmful to pregnant women and infants.
In very rare cases, some babies can develop blue baby syndrome as a result of nitrate exposure. Blue baby syndrome is a potentially life-threatening disease that prevents the blood from transferring oxygen.
One of the most common contaminants found in the public water system is prescription drugs. When patients flush their meds down the toilet or pour them down the sink, it causes cross-contamination.
As a result, individuals who drink this water are intaking chemicals that their bodies don’t need. There are other proper ways to dispose of prescription drugs rather than pouring them into the sink.
Ways to Get Safer Drinking Water
If you’re worried about your health and safety, here are a few ways to get safer drinking water:
Drink Bottled Water
Perhaps one of the most common ways that people get safer drinking water is by only drinking bottled water. Many bottled water providers go through strict regulations to ensure that the water is safe.
Usually, the water has either been distilled or gone through some other process to ensure its safety. However, if you choose to drink bottled water regularly, make sure that you are recycling so that you can continue to ensure a safe environment.
Oftentimes, bottles end up in landfills or in the ocean.
Drink Filtered Water
One of the easier ways to get clean drinking water is from a filter. These days there are many options available. You can either buy water pitchers that include a filter or use a filter over your faucet. Not to mention, in today’s time, even some refrigerators include water filters.
Frigidaire, for instance, also offers refrigerator air filters.
The Key to Safe Drinking Water
Is water safe to drink from the faucet? Well, technically the answer is yes. But if you want what’s best for yourself and your family, you shouldn’t chance it. Public water sources could get contaminated, so it’s best to buy bottled water or simply filter your water to make it safer to drink.
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