Water Borne Diseases

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Clean potable water can go a long way in preventing the spread of waterborne diseases

Clean, potable water and its supply still remains a dream for millions even as the world marks March 22 as World Water Day. Morbidity or disease due to this problem remains highProtozoa like Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia lamblia, Cyclospora; Bacteria like Vibrio cholera, Salmonella, Shigella; Viruses like Adenovirus, Hepatitis A, Parvovirus; Parasites like Ascaris, Taenia, Entorobius rely on water as a medium to reach man and cause diseases predominantly of the gastrointestinal tract. Even when the supply of water is from rivers, lakes etc. there is contamination if water has to pass along sewage lines, landfills near industries etc. The infective agents either reach man through infected water, later food or through unhygienic habits and handling of food. In some cases flies or other insects compound the problem .

These diseases can be effectively controlled and even dehydration can be prevented. Apart from the fact that such infections reduce resistance they disturb the nourishment pattern and lead to malnutrition. They reduce individual and social productivity.

Though most of the symptoms of waterborne illnesses appear similar, there are few ways they are identified better and treated. In case of Typhoid there is abdominal discomfort, mostly diarrhoea and sometimes constipation and fever which increases gradually. Giardiasis usually causes pain in the lower abdomen, blood and mucus in the stool. If it is amoebiasis loose and unformed stools with mucus and an urgency for stool are the order of the day. If it is dysentery there is frequent urge to go to the toilet with consistent pain in the abdomen relieved by passage of stool and invariably there is blood in the stool which pulls down an individual in a matter of a day.

Cholera is distinguished by the fact that apart from the loose and watery, frequent stools there is also nausea and vomiting with consistent fever and the patient is always under the threat of dehydration. If there is pale and discolored stool with yellowish urine Hepatitis is suspected. If parasites are the cause they dig into the nourishment of the host and cause poor appetite, itching at the anus, loss of weight and tiredness over a period of time.

Prevention is better than cure and improving personal hygiene is what an individual can do and should be high on agenda. Hand should be washed after defecation so that faeco-oral contamination is arrested. Food should be handled only after washing hands. Vegetable matter should be disposed well so that exposure to flies does not take place which only increases the chance of pathogens reaching the food again. Food should be cooked long enough so that harmful bacteria do not survive. At the community level, quality of water at the source should be improved.

Chlorination of water prevents growth of many a harmful pathogens. Increased supply of water will help prevent disease transmission from contaminated hands, food or household utensils. Proper maintenance of water supply, sanitation systems, pumps, wells, pipes and taps should be maintained.

Homoeopathic medicine has good remedies to improve one’s immunity to fight infection and also see that it is not susceptible to the pathogens too. Ars alb, Nux vomica are primary in preventing infection when there is presence of affected people around. Chinais a good remedy which helps for conditions like Typhoid, Merc sol for Amoebiasis, Merc cor for dysentery is helpful. Veratrum alb is known to control cholera like symptoms and Cina, Sulphur keep away worm infestations. Oral rehydration solution will help prevent further dehydration.


Dr. Venugopal Gouri
92463 72625 (mobile)


I have put on weight 20kg in three years and am now 95kg. I have developed heartburn and pricking pain in the pit of the stomach and feel better by eating for a while only to recur again. My job does not allow me to have any exercise. Can Homoeopathy help? – Pooja.

Increased intake of oily, spicy foods, stimulants like tea, coffee, alcohol, smoking, irregular food habits, anxiety, going to bed within an hour of meal, lack of exercise are all the causes which can worsen symptoms of inflammation of the stomach and duodenum. Nux vomica, Natrum phos, China, Carbo veg, Lycopodium will clear all the symptoms but lifestyle changes need to be made to see that symptoms do not recur.

Consult a homoeopath.

Shoulder pain

I have been suffering from pain in the left shoulder for the past two years. I have undergone an MRI which reveals “irregular tear of the superior labrum which extends anterior and posterior to the biceps anchor compatible with a SLAP tear”. Can homoeopathy help? – abc

Ruta, Calc flour, Calc phos, Ac.flour are a few remedies which can help in healing of these tears and give relief from the pain. Physiotherapy would be of help when continued in tandem. Consult a homoeopath.

Chronic abdominal pain

Almost once a month I suffer from pain in the lower abdomen. Sometimes there is heavy bleeding during periods. I am running 47 and have been under other medication like hormones etc. Can homoeopathy help? –abc.


The inner lining of the layer of the uterus i.e endometrium when found in other areas of the pelvis, infection of the ovaries, cervix etc., fibroids in the uterus causing heavy bleeding etc. can all cause a pain the lower abdomen apart from diseases like irritable bowel syndrome. Homeopathic medicine has good remedies when the cause is ascertained. Consult a homoeopath

Dr.Venugopal Gouri
92463 72625 (mobile)