Navigation Links
One in Five Americans Pee in Pool; Almost Half Admit Unhygienic Pool Behavior

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Water Quality & Health Council Offer Ways to Curb the Tide of Rising Recreational Water Illnesses

ARLINGTON, Va., May 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Do you know what's in your public pool? Findings from a recent survey show that when it comes to public pools this summer, watch thy fellow swimmer closely! Rather than worry about the availability of lounge chairs, lockers, and food and beverages, swimmers should be thinking more about basic questions of pool water cleanliness.

According to a survey conducted by the Water Quality & Health Council, 84 percent of Americans believe their fellow swimmers participate in unhygienic pool behavior - and they may be right. In fact, almost half (47%) admit to one or more behaviors that contribute to an unhealthy pool.

Peeing in the pool? One in five say they've done it (17%) - and eight in ten (78%) are convinced their fellow swimmers are guilty. As far as showering goes - forget it. Roughly one third (35%) pass the shower without stopping and three quarters (73%) say their fellow swimmers fail to shower before swimming.

Why Worry? Despite strong doubts about their fellow swimmers, only a third (36%) say pool water cleanliness is top of mind when they head to the pool. At the same time, most (63%) are unaware of illnesses associated with swallowing, breathing, or having contact with contaminated pool water. In fact, less than one quarter consider the frequency of pool cleaning and chemical treatment (23%) and even less (16 %) think about chlorine levels to maintain clean pool water.

"Swimming is a fun and healthy activity for old and young alike. Proper water chlorination helps protect swimmers from germs that can make swimmers sick," said Michele Hlavsa, Epidemiologist in the Division of Parasitic Diseases for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). "But swimmers also have a role to play in maintaining a clean and healthy pool. Unhygienic behavior brings germs into the pool and makes it harder for chlorine to do its job."

The CDC urges pool users to follow these six tips for healthy swimming:

  • Don't swim when you have diarrhea.
  • Don't swallow pool water.
  • Practice good hygiene. Shower with soap before swimming and wash your hands after using the toilet or changing diapers.
  • Take your kids on bathroom breaks or check diapers often.
  • Change diapers in a bathroom or a diaper-changing area and not at poolside.
  • Wash your children thoroughly (especially the rear end) with soap and water before they go swimming.

Unclean water can lead to recreational water illnesses (RWI's) - diarrhea, respiratory illness, and ear and skin infections. Children, pregnant women, and people with compromised immune systems can suffer from more severe illness if infected. According to the CDC, these illnesses are on the rise. Between 2005 and 2006, 78 outbreaks were reported in 31 states - the largest number of outbreaks ever in a two-year period. Close to 4,500 people were affected.

To check that your public pool is properly chlorinated, the Water Quality & Health Council recommends the use of portable pool and spa testing strips, easily purchased at pool supply stores and discount retailers, in addition to trusting your basic senses.

"A smelly pool is a dirty pool," explains National Consumers League President Emeritus and Water Quality & Health Council Vice-Chair Linda Golodner. "Look for water that's clean, clear and blue. Check for tiles that feel smooth and clean. Make sure there are no strong odors. Listen for pool cleaning equipment. Using your senses help you recognize the difference between a healthy pool and one that needs cleaning and treatment."

For more information on identifying and maintaining a healthy pool, as well as healthy swim behaviors, please visit and

The survey was conducted online between April 30 to May 3, 2009 among a national sample of 1,000 US Adults, using the field services of TNS Omnibus. Results were weighted to reflect the adult population based on US Census figures, including age, gender, geographic region, household income and household size. The margin of error for the study was +/-3.1 percentage points at 95% confidence.

The Water Quality & Health Council (WQHC) is a body of independent scientific experts, health professionals and consumer advocates who serve as advisors to the Chlorine Chemistry Division of the American Chemistry Council, an industry trade association.

SOURCE Water Quality & Health Council
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Many Older Americans Have Active Sex Lives
2. Despite grumbling, most Americans say they are happy at work
3. Record Number of Americans Lack Health Insurance
4. AUDIO from Medialink and Pfizer: Number of Uninsured Americans Grows to 47 Million
5. New Survey Shows Americans are Still Concerned About Food Safety, Yet Still Not Smart About What They Like to Eat
6. Amid Improving Life Expectancy Rates, Risk of Premature Death is Still Significant for Americans, New Study Shows
7. AOA President Calls on Congress to Reauthorize SCHIP and Take Action to Ensure Health Care Coverage for All Americans
8. National Council on Disability Urges Congress to Support Americans with Disabilities Act Restoration
9. Few Americans Know of Leg Artery Danger
10. More Americans Urged to Get Flu Shots
11. Pelosi: Todays Sweeping, Bipartisan Legislation to Improve Drug Safety is a Victory for All Americans
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/29/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 29, 2015 , ... While conventional ... kneeling or provide ready access to exercise weights. Fortunately, an inventor from Uniontown, Pa., ... THE TOMMY WALKER to enhance the benefits of a standard walker to improve the ...
(Date:11/29/2015)... ... November 29, 2015 , ... Key Housing, a top-rated corporate ... their December, 2015, featured apartment community: Epic. In showcasing this featured apartment community in ... tight Bay Area rental market to efficiently find housing suitable to their needs by ...
(Date:11/28/2015)... ... 28, 2015 , ... Beginning November 30th at 6:00 a.m. EST until 11:59 p.m. EST, ... possible savings of up to 20% off orders $80 or more to free gifts with ... few hours. , As a competitive e-commerce website for skin care and cosmetic needs, customers ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... CA (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... According ... carried out by the University of Toronto and the University of British Columbia suggested ... hospitalizations for head injuries. The article explains that part of the reason for the ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... a safe and convenient way to dispense prescription medications at home, so he ... effective way to monitor and dispense prescription medications. In doing so, it could ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... Sectra (STO: SECT B) ... into a multi-year agreement to provide Breast Imaging PACS ... Breast Care to increase collaboration with sub-specialists around the ... --> Sectra (STO: SECT B) ... into a multi-year agreement to provide Breast Imaging PACS ...
(Date:11/29/2015)... AMSTERDAM , Nov. 29, 2015  Strengthening its ... (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) today announced IntelliSpace Portal ... sharing, analytics and visualization platform that helps radiologists detect, ... the 2015 Radiological Society of North America Annual ... , IntelliSpace Portal 8.0 helps address the changing demands ...
(Date:11/29/2015)... Nov. 29, 2015   Royal Philips  (NYSE: PHG, ... solutions at the 2015 Radiological Society of North America ... McCormick Place in Chicago . Visitors ... the company,s broad portfolio of integrated Diagnostic Imaging, Clinical ... increase clinical performance, improve workflow and create a superior ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: