CDC awareness campaign on healthy swimming – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

CDC awareness campaign on healthy swimming – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Brief Article

Aimed at creating awareness about the spread of illnesses caused by recreational water activities and at reducing the number of cases of these illnesses, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has created a program entitled “Healthy Swimming 2003.” The program is available online at healthyswimming.

The use of modern disinfection systems in recreational water sites, such as swimming pools, water parks, and hot tubs has improved the quality of recreational water. Despite this, more people are becoming ill from swimming in contaminated water. Typically, water is contaminated by human urine and fecal matter.

“Healthy Swimming 2003” provides information for swimmers, pool operators, public health professionals, and physicians regarding recreational water illnesses, where they are found, how they are spread, who is most likely to become sick, why chlorine is not always effective, and how these illnesses can be prevented. Included in this information are the following six tips physicians can give people who will be swimming:

* Do not swim when you have diarrhea. This is especially important for children in diapers.

* Do not swallow pool water. Try your best to avoid having pool water get in your mouth.

* Practice good hygiene. Take a shower before swimming. Wash your hands after you use the toilet or change a diaper. Germs on your body can end up in the water.

* Take your children on bathroom breaks or check diapers often. Waiting to hear “I have to go” may mean that it is too late.

* Change diapers in a bathroom and not at the side of the pool. Germs can spread to surfaces and objects in and around the pool.

* Wash your child thoroughly with soap and water before swimming.

COPYRIGHT 2003 American Academy of Family Physicians

COPYRIGHT 2003 Gale Group