A Brief Overview of the Health Issues Children Might Face If They Drink Contaminated Water
Access to clean water is a basic human right that, unfortunately, many children around the world are denied. Drinking contaminated water can cause a range of health issues that affect a child’s growthdevelopment.
In this article, we will explore the health issues children might face if they drink or use contaminated water.
Table of Contents
One of the most common health issues children might face if they drink contaminated water is diarrhea. Diarrhea can lead to dehydration, malnutrition,even death if left untreated. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), diarrhea is responsible for more than 1.5 million deaths each year, mostly among children under the age of five.
Diarrhea is very common in developingleast-developed countries. Countries like Bangladesh see 5.7 percent of diarrhea cases in children under the age of five. Every year, millions of diarrhea cases are reported in children across Bangladesh.
Apart from the developingleast developed countries, diarrhea can also become widespread in developed countries like the USCanada. It becomes prevalent once the children in these countries are exposed to large quantities of contaminated water.
Drinking contaminated water can also lead to a range of gastrointestinal illnesses, including stomach cramps, nausea,vomiting. These illnesses can cause significant discomfortcan interfere with a child’s ability to eatplay.
Because of this, children don’t feel like eating at times. Even if they do manage to eat, it’s in small quantitiesnot enough to support their appetitenormal body growth. As a result, one can say that contaminated water can also lead to malnutrition.
Malnutrition is a significant health issue that can result from drinking contaminated water. When children suffer from gastrointestinal illnesses, they may struggle to absorb essential nutrients from their food, leading to malnutrition.
Due to malnutrition, children’s normal physical, as well as cognitive development, is hindered. This in turn leads not only to stunted growth but also learning difficultiesbrain development.
Contaminated water contains chemicalstraces of minerals or metals that can lead to various types of cancer. Although it’s not as common as some of the other health hazards, it’s still a risk that should not be ignored, something one can easily understand if they are familiar with the Camp Lejeune lawsuitthe Camp Lejeune Justice Act.
According to TorHoerman Law law firm’s Camp Lejeune Lawyersscientificmedical evidence provided by experts, it’s been found that the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune can cause bladder cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer,other types of cancers when used or consumed. Children too are at risk here. Therefore, the idea that contaminated water can cause cancer in children should not be downplayed.
Skineye infections are seen when kids shower in or use contaminated water to wash their faces. The reaction of the contaminated water on the skin can lead to bacterialfungal development on the skineyes, leading to infections.
Waterborne diseases like cholera, typhoid fever,dysentery are common cases of contaminated water use. They are more common in areas that lack good sanitationaccess to sufficient clean water.
These diseases can be life-threatening in children as well as adults. Global health records point out that every year, around two million people die from water-related diseases. Thus, these diseases are not to be taken lightly.
Cognitive Development Issues
We’ve already touched on this briefly, but this requires more attention.
Drinking contaminated water is bound to affect a child’s cognitive development. Several studies have concluded that children who suffer from malnutrition, dehydration,other health issues associated with drinking contaminated water are more likely to experience learning difficulties, poor memory,other cognitive issues.
Such issues can have a lasting impact on a child’s educationfuture prospects. In many cases, the child will fail to regain normal cognitive functioning for years into their adulthood.
Long-Term Health Effects
Apart from the usual diseaseshealth hazards, drinking or using contaminated water can also lead to several long-term health effects. These health effects can persist well into their adulthood.
For example, exposure to lead in drinking water can cause cognitive impairments, behavioral problems,developmental delays. Children who drink contaminated water may also be more prone to chronic illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease, etc. Cancer too is a long-term health effect that can be more visible in affected individuals over time.
Based on the discussion above, it’s evident why access to clean water is so important, especially for children. Water contamination, therefore, must be controlledif possible, put a stop to it for the betterment of our future generations.