51% of Americans Use Public Pools as a Bathing Substitute

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Do you believe in the, “cleaner behind than thou,” theory? That is the chance you take every time you jump into a public pool. I have never liked visiting public pools or water parks. Ever since I was a child, I just found them to be creepily unhygienic places to visit. For one thing, I have never enjoyed unclothing in front of scores of strangers to change into a bathing suit.

There may be curtains and private areas now, but in the 1980s, everyone just got naked like it as nothing. For another thing, I have always had the nagging feeling that the public pool I was sharing with scores or hundreds of strangers was creepily unhygienic. I just have a hard time believing that everyone jumping in the pool is immaculately clean.

So, that is why I consider the, “cleaner behind than thou,” theory before I think of jumping into a public pool. It’s just a big gamble to consider that everyone in that pool has bathed and cleaned themselves as thoroughly as yourself before jumping in. My argumentative manner aside, its isn’t a laughing matter. Swimming in a public pool isn’t a free activity.

The average fee for an annual pass to swim in any of the public pools maintained by New York City’s Parks and Recreation Department is $150. Most recreational water parks charge $60, or more, for entrance. Moreover, you could be paying money to contract some nasty waterborne illnesses. That isn’t just my own neuroses or phobias speaking either.

Surveys and research conducted by the Pool and Hot Tub Alliance, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Water Quality & Health Council prove my point. In the most stomach-churning way possible, I might add.

Odds Are Better Than Even The Public Pool Isn’t Clean

Over 51% of Americans use public pools as a personal bathing substitute. As in, while you are swimming, they are bathing. Almost 48% admitted that they never shower or bathe before jumping into a public pool. About 40% of American adults urinate in public pools. There may be almost 8 gallons of urine in a public pool during full capacity.
Over 24% of people jump into a swimming pool within an hour of experiencing diarrhea or severe bowel problems.

Sorry to ruin your day, but those are the statistics. You may be wondering about pool chlorination? Pools are strategically chlorinated according to size and capacity limits. And, on the assumption that people are clean before they get in. Have you ever jumped into a pool and noticed a pungent chlorine smell and experienced itchy red eyes? That’s not normal. It’s chloramine.

Chloramine is a chemical that is created when chlorine in a pool mixes with the nitrogen in urine, feces, and sweat. When a pool is full of unhygienic elements like dirt, and bacteria, it uses up the strategically added chlorine. This allows bacteria and microorganism to fester. Cryptosporidium is a waterborne parasite which causes diarrhea. It is created when people with bowel problems get into public pools.

You can also contract Legionnaire’s disease, a kind of severe pneumonia, skin rashes, bacterial infections, athlete’s foot, and other conditions, from a public pool.

Be Informed

Always shower before getting in a pool. Never get in a pool if you are experiencing bowel issues. Don’t swallow pool water. Ask a pool manager about the cleaning and chlorination schedule, also known as pool shocking. Try to visit a public pool near opening hours instead of the end of the day. Or, right after a scheduled pool shock. You can also look over the state inspection reports for most state-run public pools before visiting one.

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