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Do Not Swallow Swimming Pool Water, Parasitic Infection Link

Update Date: May 22, 2017 06:55 AM EDT

Warm weather is upon us and once again, US Health officials have given a warning on diarrhea outbreaks from swallowing pool water. Swimming pool water is very likely to contain parasites, which have doubled in the past few years.

How does one get infected? It starts when swimmers ingest water contaminated by diarrhea from a person infected by cryptosporidium -  a parasite which is notoriously difficult to exterminate.

Crypto has caused at least 32 outbreaks in pools or water parks last year, compared to just 16 in 2014. This fact was according to a report in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's weekly report on death and disease.

More Stats About Crypto

Arizona reported 352 people who became sick with cryptosporidiosis from July through October 2016, compared to less than 62 annually from 2011 to 2015. Ohio had 1,940 infections last year, in contrast to 571 in any one year from 2012 to 2015.

The CDC said it was not clear whether there are actually more outbreaks or whether states are doing a better job of reporting them. This was since a new DNA-based tracking tool was introduced in 2010, per The Washington Post.

Crypto is most commonly linked to diarrhea outbreaks connected to swimming pools and water parks. It can survive up to 10 days in chlorinated water and all it takes is a mouthful of contaminated water to get a healthy person sick for up to three weeks.

Infections can result to stomach cramps, watery diarrhea, nausea or vomiting, which can result to dehydration. To get rid of the parasite, the CDC suggested the closure of swimming pools and to have the water treated with high levels of chlorine.

The CDC recommended to follow these precautions to avoid crypto via Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

  • Do not swim or allow your kids to swim if they have diarrhea.
  • Do not swallow pool water.
  • Get in the shower before getting into the water to help remove any germs on the body.
  • Take kids on bathroom breaks as often as needed and check diapers in changing areas and not right next to the pool.

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