Perhaps You Have Lead in Your Water?
It is possible that your drinking water contains harmful levels of lead, particularly if your home or town uses metal plumbing or has water distribution lines made from lead. Even noncorrosive water may contain enough acidity to dissolve harmful amounts from pipes and leaded solder within an hour or two of contact; lead levels tend to peak immediately upon first use before gradually decreasing over time.
Your only way of knowing if your water contains lead contamination is through having it tested. There are several laboratories dedicated to testing drinking water which offer this test; also many water utilities provide testing at an additional fee, and some communities even provide public water testing programs.
If you have young children, pregnant women, or anyone who may be at risk from lead exposure, consider testing your water. Even low doses of lead exposure can have detrimental health consequences on babies and young children, including slow body growth and learning issues; high exposure levels – especially ongoing ones – could result in permanent brain damage; lead can also seriously threaten unborn babies by leading to premature birth and lower birth weight at birth.
Most people with elevated levels of lead in their blood do not exhibit symptoms; therefore it is crucial that we ascertain exactly how much lead there is in our drinking water supply. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), infants, toddlers and children under 6 should receive regular blood lead testing.
To reduce lead levels in your drinking water, the best approach is to flush your household plumbing and install certified point-of-use filters from an independent testing organization that are certified for lead reduction (NSF/ANSI standard 53 for lead removal and NSF/ANSI 42 for particulate removal).
Notify yourself and a licensed plumber of the lead content in your service line (which connects your house to the main source). Contact your local water utility or plumber if this applies.
If you live in a community (C) or nontransient, noncommunity (NTNC) water system that serves a consistent group of people all year-round, your water supplier should conduct an annual Consumer Confidence Report testing for lead contamination. The NHDES website lists testing results for public drinking water systems as well as specific contaminants like lead.