Healthy and Safe Swimming

Just 2.5 hours of physical activity every week, including water-based physical activity, can benefit everyone’s health. Each of us plays a role in preventing illnesses and injuries related to the water we swim, play, and relax in, and share—this summer and year-round.

A new CDC report shows that during 2015–2019, >200 outbreaks were linked to pools, hot tubs, and water playgrounds.

Cryptosporidium (or Crypto) can make swimmers sick if they swallow just a mouthful of contaminated water. Although most germs are killed within minutes by chlorine or bromine at the recommended levels, Crypto is a germ that can survive in properly treated water for more than 7 days.

For more info, visit the Healthy Swimming website.

Before getting in:

  • Don’t swim or let others swim if sick with diarrhea.
  • Shower for at least 1 minute before you get into the water to remove dirt or anything else on your body.
    • Chlorine mixed with dirt, sweat, pee, and poop creates chemicals that make swimmers’ eyes red and sting.
    • When chlorine mixes with dirt, sweat, pee, and poop, there is less chlorine available to kill germs.

Once you are in:

  • Don’t swallow the water.
  • Don’t pee or poop in the water.
  • Take kids on frequent bathroom breaks and check diapers every hour.
    • Change diapers away from the water to keep germs from getting in.
  • Dry ears thoroughly with a towel after swimming.
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