The World Health Organization estimates that waterborne diseases cause 2 million deaths each year, mostly in young children. Such illnesses cause diarrhea and infections as primary phenomena. Still, over time, they can lead to cancer and even neurological problems because of exposure to chemicals, such as mercury, pesticides, lead, etc. In addition, water can be polluted by intentional direct dumping of waste or animal carcasses, sewage, accidents such as oil spills, industrial processes such as fossil fuel combustion, etc.
Water-Borne diseases are caused by drinking water or eating food washed with water that contains parasites. They may cause infections such as toxoplasmosis, giardia, ankyloses, or ringworm, on viruses that can cause polio, hepatitis A or C, or bacteria such as Escherichia coli, cholera, and typhoid.
1- Liver Inflammation: Hepatitis is a highly infectious liver disease. It is transmitted to humans via ingestion of water contaminated with the hepatitis virus that enters the water through the droppings of an infected person or by eating food washed with contaminated water. Symptoms include abdominal pain, yellowing, depression, fatigue, nausea, weight loss, and fever.
2- Cholera: Cholera is an acute diarrheal disease caused by an intestinal tract infection by the bacterium Vibrio. Severe diarrhea leads to dehydration and can sometimes result in death. A person becomes infected with cholera through drinking contaminated water or eating food that has been washed or watered with contaminated water. Symptoms of cholera include vomiting, headache, and stomach cramps. In high-pollution areas, an infected person can contaminate the water with pathogenic bacteria and affect the whole population.
3- Typhoid fever: Typhoid is a severe bacterial infection with ulcers and acute bowel infections. The bacterial cause of the disease is known as Salmonella typhi. It typically infects a person by drinking contaminated water or eating food that has been washed with contaminated water or contaminated with the fecal matter of a person who already has typhoid. Symptoms include high fever, gastric pain, headache, severe fatigue, joint pain, and loss of appetite. Sometimes the rash propagates through the abdomen, known as rose patches.
4- Amebiasis: Amebiasis is one of the most common diseases caused by water pollution, just like diarrhea. Also known as traveler’s diarrhea, a person becomes ill by ingesting water contaminated with amoebal protozoan. In addition to infecting the large intestine, the virus can also infect the liver. Symptoms of amebiasis include mild or severe diarrhea with mucus and blood. The potential for amebiasis increases due to the use of water contaminated by sewage, poor hygiene, consumption of untreated water, and the presence of flies.
5- Intestinal worms: Intestinal worms are parasites that can be transferred through the consumption of contaminated water or the consumption of food washed with dirty water. Types of intestinal worms include common ancylostoma, roundworm, and parasitic worms. Worms are responsible for stunting, anemia, and malnutrition, especially among children. Intestinal worms infect approximately 10% of the population, most of them children.
6-Dracunculiasis (guinea worm disease): Dracunculiasis is one of the most severe illnesses caused by water pollution. It is also known as the Guinea worm disease and is very common in Africa. An individual becomes infected with worms after consuming water contaminated with larvae. The larvae then transform into adult worms and leave the body after approximately one year. An adult Guinea worm can extend up to one meter, and when it leaves the body, it leaves a person with a sore.