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Seasonal variation in fluoride content in groundwaters of Langtang area, Northcentral Nigeria

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Thirty groundwater samples were collected at the peak of the rainy season and analysed for fluoride and other cations and anions in drinking water sources of Langtang area. For comparative purposes, thirty seven groundwater samples were collected in the dry season. The aim of the study was to determine variation in fluoride content with respect to the seasons. Fluoride in water was determined by the Ion Selective Electrode (ISE) and the cations by the Inductively Coupled Plasma Atomic Emission Spectrometry (ICP-AES). The anion (sulphate) was determined by Multi – Ion Colorimeter, bicarbonate and chloride by titration method. In addition fluorine content in aquifer materials from a borehole section were determined by Fusion method. The two seasons show variation in content of fluoride in groundwater. Fluoride content in groundwater is higher in the dry season ranging from 0.13 – 10.3 mg/ l compared to the 0.06 – 4.60 mg/l values in the rainy season. Content of fluorine (0.01 wt %) in the aquifer materials (sands) is low from depth of 0 to 7.95 m. However, fluorine content increases with depth, from 7.95 to 10.60 m with concentration of 0.04 wt %, 0.05 wt % from 10.60 to 13.25m, and 0.07 wt % from 13.25 to 15.70 m, the content of fluorine however, decreased at depth 15.70 to18.55m with concentration of 0.02 wt % even with fluorite mineral in the aquifer material at this depth. Dilution of fluoride ion as a result of rain input which recharges the aquifer may be the main reason for lower values recorded in the rainy season. Over fifty and sixty percent of waters in both dry and rainy season have fluoride concentration above the WHO upper limit of 1.5 mg/l. Consumption of these elevated values of fluoride in groundwater of the study area, clearly manifests as symptoms of dental fluorosis.
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