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A new research has suggested that exposing the skin to hard water can damage the skin barrier and also increases its sensitivity to various irritants.
Hard water can actually damage the skin barrier that protects us from external threats like bacteria and sunburn. The study revealed that this can lead to the development of eczema.
The research which was conducted by the University Of Sheffield and Kings College, London, discovered that exposing the skin to hard water damages the skin barrier and increases the sensitivity of the skin to irritants found in products like soap and washing powder.
Hard water contains high levels of calcium and magnesium ions that bind to the surfactants such as sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS).
The pH level of the skin is normally acidic but hard water has high alkalinity, which means it can raise the pH level of the skin's surface.
A shift towards alkaline pH disturbs the skin's natural function as a physical barrier and leaves it prone to pathogenic bacteria that can cause infection.
In this article, we have also listed some of the health effects of hard water.
1. Hard Water Can Make Your Skin Itch:
Hard water contains sodium and this can make your skin red and itchy. This is because this water can leave minerals on your skin. Your skin is not used to this and hence can lead to itchiness.
2. It Can Make Your Skin Dry:
Excessive dryness is another effect of hard water. The minerals left behind on your skin by the water can play with the natural barrier of the skin.
3. It Can Aggravate The Condition Of Spots On The Skin:
If you have a spot-prone skin, then hard water can make it worse. The residue can get stuck inside the pores and can aggravate the condition.
4. Bad Hair:
The minerals present in the hard water can make it diffucult to get a good rinse, leaving behind residue in the scalp. Further, it can also play a spoils sport with coloured hair.