We all have been aware of the presence of microplastics in the water bodies like seas, rivers, oceans, and lakes. But recent studies by the WHO have confirmed the presence of microplastics in drinking water like bottled water.
The leading cause of concern is the number of microplastics in drinking water, as they are in the thousands instead of tiny numbers, as you would expect. Before jumping to the consequences of microplastics for human health, we shall look at what these are and how they reach our system.
What Are Microplastics
One of the non-degradable substances is plastic, which means it never vanishes from our environment. It breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces, so we have microplastics of even nanometers in our environment.
In addition to the breakdown of larger plastic substances, our daily use products, including detergents, cosmetics, and medicine, also contain intentionally added microplastics to improve the efficiency of these products.
Because of their non-degradable and persistent composition, microplastics are near impossible to remove from wherever they accumulate. These come in contact with living organism infecting their metabolism and increasing the mortality rate.
Microplastics In Drinking Water
A recently published research on Orb Media shows the presence of plastics in drinking water, both tap and bottled water though more in the latter.
These researches were carried out in developed countries with better infrastructure than underdeveloped or developing countries. Therefore scientists are expecting much more plastics in those countries with inadequate infrastructure.
Runoff and wastewater effluents are major ways of entering these wastes into drinking water. Also, the microplastics in drinking water bottles come from packing materials like plastic bottles and caps.
Effects Of Microplastics On Our Body
Because the research is in its early phases, the WHO is unsure about the impacts of microplastics on our bodies. Now, the focus of the research has shifted from measuring microplastics in water to their impacts on the human body.
Microplastics vary largely in size, some being larger while others are smaller. The larger ones don't cross the gut walls and thus get removed from the body through feces, while the smaller ones are known to cross these walls and enter nearby body tissues, harming them. The extent of the damage to these tissues is yet unknown.
How To Prevent Yourself And Your Family From Microplastics
Water purifiers at your home can be a solution to these problems as the filter has smaller pores as compared to those of microplastics and remove them. Hence, you can safeguard yourself and your family from microplastics even though the extent of the threat they impose is unknown.
Microplastics have been the talk of the town recently because of their discovery in drinking water. It will take a collective effort to remove these from our atmosphere by reducing the plastic usage and use of microplastic in the products of our daily use. However, their impact on human health is little known. Well, it's better to be safe than sorry, so use water purifiers to get rid of microplastics in drinking water.