Installing a faucet water filter is an affordable way to insure that what you and your family are drinking is clean and pure. But, is it enough?
In years past, we were primarily concerned about the consumption of contaminants. But, recent studies indicate that these contaminants can be absorbed through our skin when we shower or bathe.
Chemical contaminants become airborne along with the steam from a hot shower or a boiling pot of water. When we breathe in, the chemicals make a beeline for our bloodstreams.
Scientists have measured blood levels following a 10 minute shower and following consumption. They found that blood levels were higher following the shower. Specifically, they were looking at blood levels of THMs.
THMs or trihalomethanes are an item that will be listed on your annual quality report, if you are serviced by a public treatment facility. The facilities are supposed to mail the reports to all of the homes in the service area. But, in large metropolises, they do not always do that. You may have to access the report online.
THMs are listed because some of them are known human carcinogens. Exposure to them through drinking, inhaling or skin absorption is known to increase a person’s lifetime risk of certain kinds of cancer.
Faucet water filters can protect you from the risk of consumption. Shower head systems can protect you from inhalation and skin absorption. Both are a good investment, particularly if you have children.
The length of time of exposure is known to affect the individual risk. People exposed to them through their work are advised about the risk, if it is known. Judging from the latest reports, even a dishwasher could be exposed to more than his or her fair share.
Not every faucet water filter reduces THMs. In order to find out if the one that you have, or the one you are thinking about buying, is able to reduce or remove THMs, you need to read the product performance data.
The better companies have their products tested by Underwriter’s Laboratory. The lab is able to determine what types of contaminants are removed and the extent of removal.
Not all manufacturers send their products for testing, because there is a fee for it. There are no federal regulations stating that the manufacturers must have testing conducted. So, some companies don’t bother.
Very inexpensive faucet water filters are probably not the best quality. On the other hand, high priced reverse osmosis systems are unnecessary and they do not remove chemical contaminants such as THMs.
Chlorine is the target in most people’s minds. But, where there is chlorine, there are THMs. They are byproducts of the chlorination process. If you are exposed to one, you are exposed to the others.
There is no reason to accept this kind of toxic exposure as a fact of life. With the technology available in today’s best faucet water filter and showerhead systems, you can relax and take a deep breath– without inhaling harmful chemicals.
Fun with some sodium metal