Can Viruses Spread Via Water? Plus the Best Ways to Disinfect Water
The global pandemic has impacted many areas of our lives. Making carrying on life as normal impossible for most of us. Creating many questions that need to be answered.
Understandably, people in at-risk groups want to know exactly what they can and can’t do during this emergency. One question that people are asking is whether or not viruses can spread through water.
Water is our most valuable resource, required for all forms of life. Therefore a waterborne illness could be catastrophic for a community.
The question remains: what sort of water should you drink to promote health right now? And...
Can Viruses Actually Spread Through Water?
Some viruses, like hepatitis A and E, have been found in drinking water. Viruses can be found more regularly in sewage water, and as such we should make sure that our municipal doesn’t recycle water.
If they do, then as an extra precaution the water should be treated before we drink it.
The CDC has said that although COVID-19 has been found in stool samples, the water treatment facilities are in place to remove or inactivate viruses. Furthermore, the chemicals used for treatment must also be removed before drinking for optimal health.
To date, the COVID-19 virus hasn’t been found in drinking water. Thanks to the filtration and disinfection procedures carried out on drinking water in the West.
Sewage Systems and the Living Machine
Sewage is a massive environmental challenge. Not least in times of a pandemic.
Some areas in Scotland use what’s known as “The Living Machine.” Which is an ecological sewage system that recycles waste matter. Waste is eaten by fish and algae inside their man-made machine, based on natural principles, by adding oxygen.
A similar solution can now be found in other areas of the world including the US. But is it going to hold up during a pandemic? Especially now that oxygen supplies are said to be running low.?
Most other areas of the world use chemical waste solutions, which obviously require further filtration in our homes, after we fill our cup from the tap.
Learn More: Why Install a Water Filter System in Your Home?
Can Swimming Pools or Hot Tubs Harbour Viruses?
There isn’t much chance of us catching a virus in the public swimming pool at the moment. Mainly because they’re all closed. But what if you’re fortunate enough to have your own private hot tub or swimming pool?
In this case, you might want to fully understand whether or not you could catch the coronavirus while bathing.
Most pools and hot tubs have proper disinfection protocols in place, for example they’ll be purified with chlorine and bromine.
If you have a private hot tub that you share with your family however, and someone in your family has coronavirus, it could be an idea to refrain from using it at present to be on the safe side.
Learn More: 5 Steps to Purify Shower Water
Drinking Water and Waterborne Viruses
One thing that worries me is that 1.8 billion people were drinking fecally-contaminated water in 2012. This is the type of water that might be contaminated.
Some patients with COVID-19 have had their stools sampled, and the virus shed from the body has been found in fecal matter.
Thankfully, the current epidemic has not been found to carry much risk of transmission from feces. Hopefully, this continues to be the case.
It would be wise to take further precautions, such as filtering your water and using a showerhead purification system. So that the water that you bathe in is also free from possible contaminants.
Most of the viruses that transmit through drinking water are associated with abdominal cramping, such as rotavirus.
What’s the Best Way to Remove Viruses from Water?
Assessing the viral content of water is a costly process. However, currently in the US 99.99% of viruses must be removed or inactivated by law.
This means applying a suitable disinfectant dose. Which could mean that water municipals could increase the amount of disinfectant, to keep the water safe during a pandemic.
If this happens, it becomes ever more important to remove chlorine and chloramines from our drinking water.
Filtration alone will not remove viruses. However, it will remove disinfectants and chemicals used to clean the water at the municipal level.
Since the 1900s, the most common disinfectant for water is chlorine gas in water. Chlorine will kill most viruses instantly.
Lots of water treatment plants are moving towards the use of monochloramine (chlorine plus ammonia). Certain viruses will not be deactivated by monocholoramine (such as adenovirus).
Another minor issue is that water might be pathogen-free when it leaves the treatment facility, but then pick up nasties on its journey through our pipes. UV treatment is another valuable solution to cleanse our water of pathogens.
Identifying Viruses in Water
There are many sophisticated ways to identify viruses in our water supply. However, they’re time-consuming and expensive.
Scientists grow the residue from a water sample in cell culture, and most tests can take up to 10 days to produce results. Even if the water was tested for specific viruses (in most cases it isn’t) then it would take a lot of work to produce reliable results.
Thankfully, most water municipalities in the west have high-tech water disinfection protocols. And the resulting toxic residue can be removed with a high-quality water filter.
Although adding toxic chemicals to our water supply is not nice, it’s essential to kill pathogens and viruses.
There is no way to 100% ensure that your water is free from viruses or pathogens, however, the water municipals deploy several protocols.
Taking the extra step to filter and purify water when it arrives in your home can offer additional protection against any waterborne illness and toxic residue.
Written by best-selling author and integrative nutrition health coach Rowanna Watson, who has a passion for natural health. Rowanna is an expert in all areas of holistic health, plant-based nutrition, detoxification and personal development.
Water for Health Ltd began trading in 2007 with the goal of positively affecting the lives of many. We still retain that mission because we believe that proper hydration and nutrition can make a massive difference to people’s health and quality of life. Click here to find out more.
Filtration alone won’t remove viruses. However, it removes disinfectants and chemicals used to clean water at the municipal level.