Learn About Harmful Parasites That May Be In Your Drinking Water Ways To Prevent & Remove Them

by Curtis Grossi | Last Updated: March 19, 2024
Parasites In Water

Water is the biggest and most important component on planet earth. It’s the source of life for all living things, including plants, animals, and humans. It’s not available on other planets, and that explains why scientists haven’t yet found life there.

Like all other living things, parasites, bacteria, and viruses also need water to survive. And while not all bacteria and parasites found in water are harmful, there are some which can be quite dangerous for human intake.

When water has any of such parasites, it’s considered contaminated. Parasites are specially living organisms that rely on other organisms to survive. Outlined here are the most dangerous parasites to watch out for in drinking water.

Possible Viruses, Bacteria, And Parasites In Your Water

1. Cryptosporidium

Cryptosporidium is a fresh-water based parasite found mostly in rivers and lakes. It’s believed to enter these water bodies through human waste, animal waste, or sewage.

Cryptosporidium has unique characteristics that enable it to survive in water for months with no host. It’s so active such that it starts to feed on your body immediately after you swallow it. This parasite can cause serious health problems if the immune system of the body it attaches itself isn’t strong enough. The good news is if your immune system is strong enough, it will be fully cleansed in less than two weeks.

The cryptosporidium is a species-based parasite. The most common species responsible for causing diseases include C meleagridis, C Homini, C canis, C muri, and C felis. When swallowed, Cryptosporidium parasite attacks the gastrointestinal tract and respiratory system to cause water diarrhea and persistent cough. You can treat freshwater sourced from lakes or rivers with countertop water filters to avoid parasitic cryptosporidium infections.

2. Toxoplasma Gondii

Toxoplasma Gondii is one of the world’s most common waterborne parasitic infection found on warm-blooded animals and humans. The infection is super active in infants but not quite common in adults. It’s known to affect more than 1/3 of the world’s population.

After ingestion, toxoplasma Gondii will find its way into the bloodstream. It, however, doesn’t go past the blood if your immune system is healthy and robust. Toxoplasma Gondii is mostly linked to the consumption of dirty foods or fruits. By taking contaminated water, vegetables, or fruits, you are at of risk of getting the infection. You can as well get the infection when you eat uncooked meat, undergo blood transfusion or organ transplant.

3. Giardia Intestinalis

Also known as Giardia, Giardia intestinalis is a super potent protozoan parasite. This kind of parasite spreads super-fast. It’s more dominant in younger people than adults. Giardia can survive in water without a host for months.

Once you consume water infected with this parasite, it will develop to adult protozoa, which will then attach to your small intestines. While in the small intestines, it will produce more cysts, which develop into adult protozoa over time.

The more the parasites breed, the higher the severity of the condition. Some of the common symptoms of parasitic giardia infection include blood in the stool, weight loss vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and fever. The symptoms don’t occur immediately, as some will take about three weeks before being noticed. If not treated, the symptoms may take up to six weeks to disappear.

4. Dracunculus Medinensis

Dracunculus Medinensis is a type of roundworm classified as helminth nematode. The parasite feeds on the host’s body to acquire protection and nourishment. By so doing, it causes poor nutrients absorption, which can make the host weak and ill.

In some instances, this parasite will cause dracunculiasis or guinea worm disease. It’s found in freshwater in lakes and rivers.

After it enters the human body, the larvae move from small intestines to the skin, which often leads to sores and skin itches. You need professional medical attendance before you get the worms removed from your skin.

Dracunculus is so dangerous that the symptoms can take years to disappear. Fortunately, you can avoid the risk of consuming water contaminated with this parasite by investing in a high-end under sink water filter. Find various under sink water filters to choose one that meets your budget and performance requirements.

5. Entamoeba Histolytica

Entamoeba Histolytica is quite common in rivers, dams, and lakes. It’s widely known to cause amebic dysentery or amoebiasis. Those suffering from this disease tend to face symptoms like tenderness, diarrhea, gas, and abdominal pain.

Entamoeba Histolytica

After amoebiasis gets into your body, it goes straight to the bloodstream from where it heads to the liver, the lungs, or even the brain.

What Are Waterborne Parasites?

Waterborne parasites are a breed of organisms that live in water and use it as a way to infect host bodies. Water contaminated with parasites is never suitable for human consumption. Some parasites are so dangerous such that they can render your immune system useless, and cause untimely deaths.

Waterborne diseases occur when the pathogenic microorganisms in the water are transferred to your body. The transmission happens when you’re drinking, bathing, or even washing with contaminated water. There’re several types of waterborne parasites, which cause infections.

Ways To Prevent Intake Of Waterborne Parasites

Before we dig deeper into different types and species of water parasites, it’s crucial to analyze the main ways to minimize intake of water contaminated with parasites.

Separating municipal water lines from sewage water lines is a great way to ensure the water used in big cities does not get contaminated with parasites. Boiling water and using whole house water filters is another excellent way to reduce the chances of parasitic diseases.

Foods To Help Remove Waterborne Parasites

The most natural way to eradicate waterborne parasites from the human body is through intake of foods, vegetables, or fruits. Adding turmeric to tea, drinks, and dishes can go a long way in helping in quick removal of waterborne parasites. When crushed, lemon seeds can as well help in the eradication of parasites from the human body.

Eating coconut and drinking coconut water is another powerful natural way to kill parasites. Castor oil and milk mixture has strong parasite killing properties so it can as well help you treat parasitic diseases.

Other amazing natural products you can use to cure water-borne parasitic diseases include papaya seeds, pomegranate juice, rice vinegar, and garlic. Garlic has strong antifungal and antibacterial properties which aid in the killing of body parasites.

Bottom Line

These are the most harmful waterborne parasites. It’s good to master all the parasites and how they get into the human body as well as the fundamental tricks to treating water-borne related conditions and diseases.

Eating lots of fruits and vegetables is the most natural and reliable way to treat parasitic infections. Drinking clean and filtered water is the best way to prevent these infections.

Enjoy drinking clean and hygienic water by investing in high-quality water filters. Browse a variety of water filter softeners to choose the best water filter for your household.

Curtis is the founder and owner of softeningwater.com. He is the lead guy concerning all the water-softening accessories in this site's guides and reviews. If he is not writing a reviews, guides or any other useful tips, you will find him testing them to find out their suitability. He is passionate about softening water. You will find him extremely helpful and always willing to educate the general populace all there is concerning water and its effects on their health and appliances.