There are only three things you can flush down the toilet – urine, feces, and toilet paper. In other words, human excrement, or the three elements: urine, feces, and paper.
The sewage journey usually takes one of two directions. It either heads by pipe into your community’s local sewer, or into a septic tank near your home.
Before it reaches your local treatment plant, sewage passes through a screen of metal rods that filters out large objects and objects that enter the sewer.
From there, it all goes into a sedimentation tank where solids like sand and gravel picked up along the way settle to the bottom.
These early processing plants are also responsible for the removal of other “fragile materials”.
Did you know that 50 percent of the so-called non-dispersible materials in sewage are paper towels from public restrooms, followed by 25 percent of baby wipes, and then a mixture of condoms, cosmetic wipes, tampon applicators, and other things?
Finally, after passing through the primary sedimentation tanks, the wastewater continues the cleaning process through aeration tanks, new sedimentation tanks, and in some cases, tertiary treatment facilities where it is disinfected with chlorine and/or ultraviolet (UV) light.
Ultimately, in the most advanced wastewater treatment systems, we may get recycled water that can be used in agriculture or for human consumption.
However, no sanitation system is perfect. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), only 27 percent of the world’s population (about 1.9 billion people) use private sanitation facilities connected to sewage streams from which wastewater is treated.
We all make mistakes, and we can all change our daily habits. Even if it takes time. It’s just a matter of thinking twice before flushing the toilet.
Remember that by adopting new behaviors, you reduce the amount of toxic and potentially harmful substances and chemicals that interact with water and marine life.
When you flush these 20 items down the toilet, you not only damage the plumbing, but also pollute the local water supply.
Some of them are quite obvious, but there are also a few that we thought were good to go but should never go into the sewer system.
Instruct your children to follow good bathroom practices. Avoid flushing the following things down the toilet:
1. Paper towels
surprised? do not be. Yes, they look and feel like toilet paper, but they should never go down the toilet. Believe it or not, paper towels do not have the same properties as toilet paper and do not easily decompose down the sewer line.
2. Cosmetic wipes
Wet wipes are one of the worst problems with modern sanitation systems. They are responsible for causing half of the global barriers to fat accumulation, also known as fatbergs. Cosmetic wipes do not dissolve in water and have a very negative impact on the wastewater treatment process.
3. Baby wipes
It’s soft, gentle, and soft, but it doesn’t break down like toilet paper. And just because wet wipes are harmful to babies, that doesn’t mean they won’t harm the environment. Baby wipes are not biodegradable, so they should not be rinsed.
Not only are they disgusting because they end up in public waterways, but they are also non-biodegradable. Latex causes serious problems in the septic system, so keep it private and throw it in the trash.
5. Tampons and pads
Giving up feminine products has always been a problem for women. But it’s also a plumbing problem because it can quickly clog pipes. Roll up tampons or sanitary pads and place them in a small sanitary bag, then put them in the trash.
6. Dental floss
Dental floss is usually made of Teflon or nylon. When you rinse it off, it mixes with wet wipes, paper towels, hair, and other objects, creating huge balls that clog pumps and sewers.
7. Contact lenses
About 125 million people use contact lenses every day around the world. As a result, billions of daily contacts go down the toilet every year. But what few people know is that throwing used lenses down the drain contributes to the creation of trillions of microplastics, one of the major environmental concerns in today’s world.
8. Cotton swab
It is small and flexible, clogs drains and does not decompose quickly. Cotton swabs are responsible for many clogged toilets.
Yes, there are still people who flush diapers down the toilet. And those who do will be clogging the toilet in no time. To make matters worse, modern baby diapers are made of materials that expand upon contact with water.
It is soft, delicate and absorbent. But the tissue will not degrade like toilet paper. Do you suffer from a cold? Sneeze or cough into a tissue, then throw it in the trash.