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Summer is in full swing and many Mesa County residents are taking advantage of warm temperatures.

Swimming in pools, rivers and lakes is fun, but it’s important to practice good habits and to be attentive to keep your family healthy and safe.

Lakes, rivers, oceans, fountains, hot tubs, water parks and swimming pools can all carry Recreational Water Illnesses (RWIs). Common RWIs include gastrointestinal, skin, ear, respiratory, eye, neurological and wound infections. 

Children, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems are at most risk for contracting RWIs, but anyone can get sick after swallowing, breathing in mists, or having contact with contaminated water.

Help
reduce the spread of RWIs:
  • Shower before
    you get into the water.
  • Don’t swallow
    the water.
  • Stay out of the
    water if you have diarrhea.
  • Take kids on
    bathroom breaks and do not change diapers poolside. 
Safety
tips for private and public pool/spa owners:

  • Test pool and
    spa water regularly for Pseudomonas, which can cause hot tub rash and
    swimmers ear.
  • Ensure pools and
    spas have drain covers that comply with safety standards.
  • Keep pool and
    spa covers in good working order.
Be sure to be attentive when kids are swimming. 

  • Put down your phone and focus on swimmers. 
  • Make sure everyone knows how to swim and use life jackets accordingly. 
  • Prevent access to water when pools aren’t in use. Install barriers, such as four-sided fencing or weight-bearing pool covers.