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Giardia (Giardiasis) & Cryptosporidium (crypto) in Swimming Pools

stages of CryptosporidiumSorry to be so blatant, but this is about "poop in the pool"...

Two growing health concerns in swimming pools & spas are Giardia (Giardiasis) & Cryptosporidium.

Both of these recreational water diseases (WRD) are causing much concern in public health departments around the country and in various parts of the world.

Consumers who are seeking clean, "healthy" water to swim in, either in their own backyard swimming pool or in a properly maintained public or semi-public swimming pool (clubs, schools, etc), are educating themselves to these concerns as well. They want to be better assured of "safe" treated water.

The most common symptoms to both Giardia & Cryptosporidium are:
  • diarrhea

  • gas and/or flatulence

  • cramping

  • stomach and/or intestinal discomfort

Anyone can be at risk of contracting either of these diseases which are parasitical in nature by accidentally swallowing water that has been contaminated through accidental fecal (bowel movements, poo, poop - sorry, had to make this understandable to everyone) contamination.

These accidents have caused certain municipalities around the country to prohibit children under the age of 5 years from using public swimming pools and/or water parks (basically targeting non potty trained children).  Fecal contamination can also come from "uninvited" animals that may enter the pool or even bird "fly-overs".

The average person has about a pinky nail sized piece of fecal matter on their bodies a good percentage of the day. 

For that reason alone, it is a very good idea to shower before going into a swimming pool.

Giardia & Crypto can live in human & animal intestines for periods of time, sometimes without manifesting any symptoms.  Incubation time is typically 1 - 2 weeks.  If you suspect infection, only a medical test (stool sample) performed by your doctor can verify this disease.

Giardia & Crypto are both parasites which have "shells".  These shells prevent normal treating by chlorine.  Both are highly resistant to even very high levels of chlorine (i.e.  - crypto can only be "killed" by exposure to chlorine at a level of greater than 20 ppm for longer than 24 hours continuously).

Some municipalities & states are recommending the use of Ultra Violet devices which, when used properly, can "sterilize" these parasites and render them unable to multiply.

Ultra Violet DOES NOT KILL the bacteria.

For more detailed information on either of these 2 recreational water illnesses, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website.

If you still need help, here's how to reach us:

Telephone (during store hours): Shelton  203-377-0100


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