Anyone who has ever felt ill after going for a swim might have gotten sick from the water. Pool time and getting sick fall on the opposite ends of the fun spectrum, but they can be correlated if the premises and swimmers aren't prepared. Experts from your local San Diego pool service can remove germs from the pool to knock out recreational water illnesses and let the good times roll.
A waterborne what?
An RWI is defined as a sickness that's caught from swimming in fresh water. Disease can be transmitted in a number of ways. For example, if pool chemicals like chlorine and pH levels aren't routinely checked and adjusted they can create harmful agents called pathogens. These are the elements that carry the disease and can move through the water and infect swimmers.
Illnesses can spread from person-to-person or start in a pool and infect a swimmer. Infections can occur during or after swimming from breathing in, ingesting or simply coming in contact with contaminated water. Objects like soil and dirt can contaminate the pool if they fall in because they also contain germs. Non-swimmers of the household are at risk of getting an RWI because the toxins can become airborne after water evaporates. Furthermore, RWIs don't come in one form, many infections fall under its umbrella and the symptoms may vary.
Where they lurk
The wide range of infections that can occur include gastrointestinal, skin, ear, respiratory, eye and neurologic. The most common symptom associated with RWIs is excessive bathroom use and diarrhea, but it's just one of many. Plenty of uncommon infections are waterborne. A disease called schistosomiasis that stems from humans coming in contact with freshwater snails can be spread through water even if there aren't any critters in the area, as reported by The Weather Channel. When a person is sick with it and they go for a swim, they contaminate the water.
E. coli bacteria, which is typically associated with eating undercooked poultry, can live in pools. According to a report conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 58 percent of pool filters that were sampled had tested positive to E. coli, a bacteria that makes people very sick. It's been linked to eating raw poultry but it also lurks in swimming pools. The chance of contracting an RWI can be reduced greatly, according to the source.
"Swimming is an excellent way to get the physical activity needed to stay healthy," said Michele Hlavsa, chief of CDC's Healthy Swimming Program. "However, pool users should be aware of how to prevent infections while swimming. Remember, chlorine and other disinfectants don't kill germs instantly. That's why it's important for swimmers to protect themselves by not swallowing the water they swim in and to protect others by keeping feces and germs out of the pool by taking a pre-swim shower and not swimming when ill with diarrhea."
Pool owners can take action to make sure their swimmers and guests don't get sick from a swim. Regular maintenance by a reputable company such as Fort Worth Pool Service can keep water germ-free with routine chemical checks. Professionals recommend chemical balancing and pool cleaning to take place every other week. In addition to minimizing germs in the water, the service will take care of manual labors such as brushing, vacuuming, backwashing and emptying baskets. Although itchy skin is a good indicator that the balance of chemicals are off, it's important not to wait for it to get to that point because the diseases could already be living in the water. What's more is many times there's no way of knowing that there are invisible harmful agents in the pool. Scheduled visits from the pool company can reduce concerns of lurking germs and the risk of disease.