The Advantages and Disadvantages of Water Purification Processes

Water is essential to keep the body healthy and functioning normally. It is recommended that we drink eight glasses of water a day. But, while the water supply in every household has been treated to make it suitable for drinking, contaminants can still be found. The general categories of contaminants in water supplies are biological entities, heavy metals, inorganic chemicals, and organic chemicals. Thus, different techniques are being used to make sure that the kind of water that goes inside the body is safe.

Water purification paves the way for different forms of pure water. And, it is especially beneficial for those places where there is no sufficient supply of fresh water. Once your water supply undergoes any method of purification, the contaminants that may be present in it will be reduced or removed. This makes the water safer for consumption.

The need for supply of pure water is evident in the rise of many companies that supply purified water and in having water purification systems installed in many houses. Water purification methods include distillation, deionization, carbon filtration, reverse osmosis, and ultraviolet (UV) water purification.

However, there are debates whether the consumption of pure water is really healthy or not. Some contend that pure water or demineralized water lack minerals present in raw water that is needed in our daily diet. These include magnesium, calcium, and sodium. One of the negative health effects that are commonly associated with continued consumption of purified water is teeth deterioration. But some also contend that because purified water lacks these minerals does not necessarily mean that it is bad for the health. It is for the reason that there are other sources for these minerals such as fruits, vegetables, and meat.

As consumers, the best thing that we can do is to make informed choices. Maybe we can start by taking a look at some of the different ways on how water is purified.

One is deionization, where ions that have negative charges are filtered out from your water supply. Its product is called deionized water. Then there is distillation, where water is boiled and the steam is condensed into a clean container. This produces the popular distilled water.

We have also mentioned carbon filtration. In this process, activated carbon, or carbon that has been charged with a slight electropositive charge, is used to filter impurities such as herbicides, pesticides, chlorine, benzene, trihalomethane (THM), and other chemicals that can be found in tap water. Another known process is ultraviolet water purification. This method purifies water by exposing water to UV light, thus damaging the structure of the microorganisms that live in it, just like bacteria and viruses. Reverse osmosis, on the other hand, purifies water using a semi-permeable membrane, where the contaminants are trapped in its tiny pores.

Moreover, pure water is not solely used for drinking. It is also used in many other ways. If you want to have spot-free windows, for instance, you can clean them using deionized water. This can work the same for your car. Purified water is also often used in tests and experiments as well as in washing laboratory equipment.

Water purification, although it has potential negative effects, indeed plays an important role in our society, especially these days when we are confronted with various environmental problems such as pollution. It gives us the option to consume water that we think is safer and more beneficial to our health. Investing on safer water is much like investing on other health products and activities such as maintaining supplements for vitamins and minerals, purchasing exercise equipment, and engaging in sports.

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