you ever wanted to know how important it is to not only brush your teeth
but that the quality of the water you brush your teeth with to be of high
quality, consider this quote by Dr LEE Jong-wook, Director-General, World
Health Organization: "Water and Sanitation is one of the primary drivers
of public health. I often refer to it as "Health 101", which means that
once we can secure access to clean water and to adequate sanitation facilities
for all people, irrespective of the difference in their living conditions,
a huge battle against all kinds of diseases will be won."
a look at the major diseases fostered by use of unsafe water for personal
- Diarrhea: 1.8
million people die every year from diarrhoeal diseases (including cholera);
90% are children under 5, mostly in developing countries; 88% of diarrhoeal
disease is attributed to unsafe water supply, inadequate sanitation and
hygiene; Improved water supply reduces diarrhoea morbidity by 21%. Improved
sanitation reduces diarrhoea morbidity by 37.5%; The simple act of washing
hands at critical times can reduce the number of diarrhoeal cases by up
to 35%; Additional improvement of drinking-water quality, such as point
of use disinfection, would lead to a reduction of diarrhoea episodes of
- Malaria: 1.2
million people die of malaria each year, 90% of which are children under
5; There are 396 million episodes of malaria every year, most of the
disease burden is in Africa south of the Sahara; Intensified irrigation,
dams and other water related projects contribute importantly to this disease
burden; Better management of water resources reduces transmission of malaria
and other vector-borne diseases.
- Schistosomiasis: An
estimated 160 million people are infected with schistosomiasis; The disease
causes tens of thousands of deaths every year, mainly in sub-Saharan Africa;
It is strongly related to unsanitary excreta disposal and absence of nearby
sources of safe water; Basic sanitation reduces the disease by up to 77%;
Man-made reservoirs and poorly designed irrigation schemes are main drivers
of schistosomiasis expansion and intensification.
- Trachoma: 500
million people are at risk from trachoma; 146 million are threatened by
blindness; 6 million people are visually impaired by trachoma; The disease
is strongly related to lack of face washing, often due to absence of nearby
sources of safe water; Improving access to safe water sources and better
hygiene practices can reduce trachoma morbidity by 27%.
- Fluorosis: Over
26 million people in China suffer from dental fluorosis due to elevated
fluoride in their drinking water; In China, over 1 million cases of skeletal
fluorosis are thought to be attributable to drinking-water; The principal
mitigation strategies include exploitation of deep-seated water, use of
river water, reservoir construction and defluoridation.
the use of unsafe waters in hygiene represents a major problem in the
containment of disease. By keeping proper hygiene the population separates
itself from disease. But when these waters are polluted, children and
the elderly often are the first to suffer the ill effects.