Nothing screams summer like a dip in the pool. Whether you're hitting up a public pool in a park, in a hotel, or you're on vacation in a resort. There are some things you should keep in mind before diving in.
According to a study done by the CDC (center for disease control) between the years 2000 and 2014, hotel pools and hot tubs, we're responsible for a third of all swimming-related outbreaks.
During that 14-year period, a total of 493 outbreaks were linked to chlorinated or treated water and reported in the United States.
As a result, these outbreaks led to at least 27,219 illnesses and 8 deaths.
I bet you're asking, well isn't the chlorine in the pool used to kill off bacteria that harms people? Well, yes. But it isn't that simple.
Some parasites and bacteria can survive in even properly maintained pools. The three main microorganism responsible for infecting people are Cryptosporidium (also known as Crypto), Pseudomonas, and Legionella.
Crypto is a parasite that can survive even if a pool is cleaned and maintained. And Pseudomonas and Legionella are bacteria that live in slimy areas of pools, hot tubs, and water park.
That said, although the statistics are shocking, you CAN make a difference by exercising common sense and take precautions to help maintain cleanliness in public pools by doing the following:
- Don’t swim or let your kids swim if sick with diarrhea
- Before getting in the water, use a test strip from your local retailer or pool supply store.
- Don't let your kids swallow or drink pool water
- Take kids on regular bathrooms breaks and change diapers frequently