Health, Water

Is Your Water the Cause of Your Skin Issues?

Have you or someone you love been struggling with frustrating and uncomfortable skin issues as of late? Whether you are experiencing dry skin on your hands or acne on your face or back, you’re likely wondering what is causing the issue and what you can do to fix it. If you’ve tried any number of supposed solutions only to find that your skin issues aren’t clearing up, it may be time to look for answers in more unexpected places. While many people are quick to assume that what is causing their skin issues can be attributed to their choice of soap, for example, the problem may be the water that you’re washing with instead!

Believe it or not, tap water that contains “harmless” additives such as chlorine, magnesium, or iron can have a negative impact on skin that is already sensitive. Even worse, it can be difficult to identify when your water is the cause of your skin issues. After all, it isn’t necessarily the first thing that many of us think of. Still, it’s important to take note of the skin issues that could very well be caused by your tap water. Today, Optimum will be discussing four skin issues that your water could cause.

Acne Breakouts

While many of us believe that acne breakouts are something that should be reserved for those in their teens, this is far from the truth of the matter. Although you wish you were past your acne days, you may be currently dealing with an acne breakout that you can’t determine the cause of. If you have recently changed soaps and specialty products and are still suffering from acne breakouts, you may want to think about whether or not your water is to blame.

Hard water that contains large amounts of magnesium, iron, and/or calcium could interfere with your soap lather, and the mineral flecks can actually end up clogging your pores. This creates a perfect storm of sorts where acne forms each time you wash your shoulders, back or face. If you suspect that your water may contain large amounts of any of the contaminants listed above, visit the EPA’s website to locate a testing facility near you.

Itchy, Red Skin and Hives

One of the worst things that you can experience when it comes to contaminants in your tap water, in terms of your skin, is an excess of chlorine. While many communities add chlorine to tap water during the processing stage in an effort to kill microbes, the chlorine isn’t filtered back out again of the water supply after this.

Much like a swimming pool, too much exposure to chlorinated water can cause red and itchy skin and even hives for those with especially sensitive skin. While the appearance of your skin may resemble an allergic reaction, this may not be the case. If your skin turns red or begins to itch after washing your hands or face, for example, you should know that this is actually a mild chemical burn caused by excess chlorine. To learn more about free chlorine testing, check out the CDC’s website for more information.

Dry and Flaky Skin

When you have a high degree of hard water in your home, it is not at all uncommon to encounter uncomfortably dry skin that can begin to flake. If you have noticed a particularly “squeaky” feeling experienced after washing and bathing, this is a classic indicator that you have hard water. This could be, in turn, what is causing your chronic dry skin problem.

So, what causes this? The minerals found in hard water are drying agents, and your skin is unable to maintain a healthy level of moisture when it comes into contact with hard water. These minerals may be blocking your skin’s ability to absorb moisture, which can make it difficult to keep your skin moisturized and healthy over time. Curious as to whether or not you have hard water in your home? There are easy DIY tests you can perform to test for hard water in your home.

Increased Risk of Skin Cancer

Finally, another chemical element that can cause skin issues if found in your home’s water is arsenic. Arsenic is naturally abundant in the earth’s crust and can be released into groundwater under certain conditions. If you rely on groundwater – such as a private well – as your source of drinking water, you should know that long-term exposure to arsenic can negatively impact your skin. In fact, research suggests that after five years, prolonged exposure to arsenic can lead to the development of the thickening and pigmentation of the skin, premalignant skin lesions, and even an increased risk of skin cancer.

The likelihood of these skin issues occurring depends on exactly how much arsenic has been consumed and whether or not you live in an area where the water has been heavily contaminated with arsenic. If your primary source of drinking water is groundwater, we highly recommend performing regular tests for arsenic. In doing so, you’ll protect the health of both you and your family!

Clean Drinking Water with Optimum Bottleless Water Systems

Now that you know some of the most common skin issues that can be caused by contaminants in your water, you may be wondering what you can do proactively to eliminate harmful chemicals from your drinking water. With Optimum’s bottleless water systems, you’ll have access to a 5-step filtration process that removes chlorine, sediment, bacteria, and other harmful contaminants from your drinking water. Not only does this mean great-tasting water, but it also means a reduced risk of encountering the skin issues listed here due to the consumption of harmful contaminants. Best of all, you can try one of our bottleless water systems FREE for seven days. Purify your water on demand in your office with Optimum and enjoy cleaner, fresher water! Clearly. Pure. Water.