Boating, swimming, BBQs or just basking in the sun make excursions to recreational waters like lakes, rivers and streams pleasurable outdoor adventures loaded with fun activities and picturesque views. But what about those dangerous microscopic waterborne pathogens that you cannot see? Those hidden pathogens like bacteria and viruses can be lurking in recreational waters. To avoid getting sick, it’s critical to not accidently swallow any water or drink any unpurified water.
E. Coli Bacteria in Lakes, Rivers and Streams
Lakes, rivers and streams contaminated with animal or human feces may contain the E. Coli bacteria. This waterborne pathogen causes severe diarrhea, abdominal cramps and vomiting. And an E. Coli O157 infections can lead to kidney failure, neurological damage and sometimes death. Antibiotics are not effective for treating an E. Coli infection. For the most part, folks have to recover on their own. So, how great is the risk of E. Coli in recreational waters? According to the EPA, the acceptable risk is 3.6 percent. That means that the EPA believes that it is acceptable for one in 28 to become ill.
The Diarrheal Disease of Giardiasis
Caused by the parasite giardia, giardiasis disease can be caused in U.S. lakes, rivers and streams if animal or human feces is in the water. It’s a parasite that can result in a wide array of symptoms, including diarrhea, greasy stools, dehydration, stomach cramps and gas. Who’s at risk? Basically, anyone who swims in recreational waters where there is poop. Even if the contaminated waters enter through the nasal passages, you can still get this intestinal infection. Luckily, prescription drugs are effective in the treatment of giardiasis.
Other Waterborne Pathogens
Other waterborne pathogens that cause recreational water illnesses include cryptosporidium, shigella and norovirus. These recreational water illnesses result in a broad range of symptoms, but diarrhea is the most prevalent. In most cases, diarrhea is just plain uncomfortable. But, it come become severe. If you have severe abdominal pain, dehydration, dark stools, a high fever or rectal pain along with diarrhea, it’s best to see a doctor. There may be medications that a doctor can prescribe to make you more comfortable.
Solutions to Reduce the Risk of Recreational Water Illnesses
While there is no magic bullet to prevent all recreational water illnesses, there are some effective ways to best prevent them. Whether you’re in a lake, pool or other body of water, be sure not to swallow any water. Pack a bottle of Fit Bottle for your water trip to purify the water from harmful chemicals, viruses and bacteria. Certified lab tests have proven that Fit Bottle blocks up to 99 percent of harmful chemicals, viruses and bacteria. It’s a water purifying bottle that uses nano-technology and zero adhesives for protection from harmful organisms.