It is so hard to bring a distinction between water and life, as these two are synonymous. But again, not any water can be synonymous to life, as there is strong evidence indicating that hard water has lots of potential hazards to human life. And it is on this premise that you find so many people across the world seeking water softener to remove the minerals and other components that constitute hard water.

But still, not so many people understand the health hazards that can be brought about by hard water. You will find so many people suffering from unexplained joint illnesses as well as skin diseases, and have nothing to do about it as they don’t know the cause. If you want to know some of the negative effects of hard water on your body, and the possible prevention and treatment, then read on.

Even before we delve much into the negative effects of hard water, let us first understand what is meant by hard water.

What is hard water?

Hard water is water that contains high mineral content of between 120 and 180 PPM. In most cases, the minerals that make water hard are calcium and magnesium.

How do we end up with hard water?

As already mentioned, hard water comes as a result of impurities caused by the presence of calcium and magnesium in water. And this is usually found in groundwater, as these minerals get dissolved in the soil and go to the water table.

Surface water on the other hand doesn’t have lots of the impurities. This means that regarding water hardness, surface water tends to be less hard compared to the groundwater. This means that surface water has fewer effects on the human body.

What are the effects of hard water on the human body?

A report by the International Journal of Preventative Medicine shows that there are many ill effects that regular users of hard water can get. Several organs of a human body can be affected by hard water, and this can bring lots of health problems. Let’s take a look at some of these effects:

Cardiovascular disease

Most international studies have found an association between hard water and cardiovascular disease. In particular, the use of hard water has been associated with high blood pressure as well as heart diseases.

When you use hard water on a regular basis, there is a chance that the minerals get stack on the walls of blood vessels. This plays a significant role in narrowing the blood path, thus easily leading to heart problems. High blood pressure will be the next thing in the event that the blood vessels are narrow.

Can cause cancer

While it is not true to say that magnesium and calcium are responsible for the high cancer levels being reported across the globe, the truth is other elements in hard water can cause cancer. Given that hard water mostly originates from groundwater, there is always a chance that other foreign elements such as agricultural chemicals will sip through the soil. These are some of the things that will most likely cause cancer among users of the hard water.

Retarded growth

If you thought hard water could only affect your skin and heart, think again. Numerous studies have found a direct relationship between the use of hard water and stunted growth among young children. While this might be compounded by many other factors, in most cases, children with stunted growth have been found to be using hard water as a common factor.


Studies have also found a direct link between magnesium and diabetes. The ATP-related enzymes and channels that regulate insulin are dependent on magnesium. This shows that the high concentration of magnesium in an individual’s body can increase the chances of one contracting diabetes. There is evidence to suggest that subclinical magnesium can actually worsen a diabetic state.

Skin diseases

It is not possible to exclude the effects of hard water when it comes to skin diseases. We have all witnessed the irritation that one gets when he/she bathes using hard water. Also, apart from the itchiness, dry skin is a major indicator of someone who has used hard water to bathe.

The components found in hard water such as calcium, magnesium, and others are all responsible for the dry skin and itchiness that one experiences.

Even though I have explained the side effects of hard water on individuals, this does not mean that hard water is bad and should never be used. Medical practitioners explain that there are many benefits that one can get by using hard water. What is important is for you to know how hard the hard water is.

What are the solutions?

There are some things that people can choose to do to reduce the level of mineral concentration in the water they drink or use for other purposes at home. Filtration is part of the solution, where most individuals would want to compare Brita vs Pur and choose the best water filter for their use.

You can also choose to treat water and reduce the mineral concentration level, turning it from hard water to soft water which is safe for consumption. Chemical treatment of water is among the best solutions that are available to those individuals who fully depend on groundwater for home use and consumption.