Preventing Illnesses in Recreational Water

recreationalSwimming is great fun, but recreational waters can be a place to pick up illnesses.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), in a recent press release asks that we all do our part in keeping our recreational water safe.

The CDC suggests following these healthy swimming steps to protect you, your family, and other swimmers from recreational water illnesses.

Three Steps for All Swimmers – Keep germs from causing recreational water illnesses:

  • Don’t swim when you have diarrhea. You can spread germs in the water and make other people sick.
  • Don’t swallow the pool water. Avoid getting water in your mouth.
  • Don’t assume that pool water is germ free because the water is treated with chlorine
  • Practice good hygiene. Shower with soap before swimming and wash your hands after using the toilet or changing diapers. Germs on your body end up in the water.

Three Steps for Parents of Young Kids – Keep germs out of recreational water:

  • Take your kids on bathroom breaks or check diapers often. Waiting to hear “I have to go” may mean that it’s too late.
  • Change diapers in a bathroom or a diaper-changing area and not at poolside. Germs can spread in and around the pool.
  • Wash your child thoroughly (especially the rear end) with soap and water before swimming. Invisible amounts of fecal matter can end up in the pool.

Michele Hlavsa, CDC, states.”“You can get gastrointestinal infections, viral meningitis, ear infections – also known as swimmer’s ear – but the most common infection is diarrhea from the germs in recreational waters.” Ms. Hlavsa advises, “Don’t swallow the water, or swim with open sores.”


Nurse Diane Speaks to the “Can Do” Kids About Being Health Smart

Hi, I’m Diane Hopkins. Not only do I play the role of a nurse on “Can Do” Street, I am a nurse!

In the interactive program, Germs, I  speak to the “Can Do” Kids about what germs are and how to avoid them so they don’t get sick. When your child plays the program he or she gets to make decisions for the “Can Do” Kids, helping them avoid germs and practice good personal hygiene such as hand washing and covering their mouth and nose when they cough or sneeze.

In Food is Fuel I speak about food being the fuel that runs our bodies and gives us the energy to do well in school and  in recreational and sports activities. Your child will have the opportunity, while playing the program, to make decisions about what foods are good meal foods and snack foods.

Both programs reinforce what your child is learning at home and in school.


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