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Drinking Water Safety for Children

Water is a necessity for the survival of human beings and other living things. As much as water can contribute to the health and growth of human beings, it can also cause a variety of health problems if it is contaminated. Therefore, it is important for parents to ensure that the water that is consumed by their children is clean and safe for drinking.

In the world today, most of the water that is available for human consumption is clean and safe, but there are times that extreme weather conditions and treatment problems may result in serious contamination. Water that is contaminated by bacteria and viruses can cause instant health problems, such as diarrhea and vomiting. If the water is exposed for an extended period of time to an excessive amount of minerals, pesticides, and solvents, it can lead to the development of illnesses such as skin irritation, gastrointestinal problems, reproductive problems, growth problems, cancer, and other serious conditions. Children are especially sensitive to the effects of contaminated water, so it is important to make sure that they drink only pure water.

Children will benefit greatly from water because it is an important nutrient that can prevent health problems. Many people think that children do not need to drink so much water because they have smaller bodies, but on the contrary, they should consume more water because they are more susceptible to dehydration. Most children do not like to drink water, but there are a number of ways that parents can make drinking water more attractive to their kids, and these include flavoring the water with lemon and orange slices, letting them choose their own cups and water bottles at the store, and serving them frozen cubes of Koolaide or juice with water.

The quality of water in the US is rather poor, considering that there are so many industrial facilities around the country. According to estimates made by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), a total of 9.7 billion lbs of chemicals from industrial activities are disposed in US waters each year. Also, tests have shown that there are traces of nitrate in more than 50 percent of the drinking-wells in the country. In 38 states across the US, drinking wells contain more than 70 different types of pesticides. About 80 percent of the country's top 1000 most hazardous waste dumps are contaminating underground water with leaked toxins. The underground water is further contaminated by leaking gas from more than half million underground gasoline storage facilities. Furthermore, approximately 30 million acres of gardens and parks are treated with two to three times more pesticides than farm crops, and some of these chemicals end up in water supplies.

To ensure that water in the US is safe for drinking, the government has imposed the Safe Drinking Water Act to improve the quality of drinking water. This act covers various processes that are related to the supply of drinking water, including the monitoring of drinking water, treatment process, protection of water sources, regulation of the disposal of waste water and underground fluids, and others. Standards are also set by the EPA for about 90 different contaminants that are usually found in drinking water. A legal limit for each for these contaminants has been defined. Also, all local water suppliers are required to submit annual reports to their customers, and these reports have to include information such as quality of drinking water in the locality, the source of water, and the various contaminants that are present in the water.

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