If you're like us, your summer goals include frolicking in Idaho's most beautiful blue bodies of water, lounging by the pool, swimming in the pool, and as much time on a paddle board or in a boat as possible!

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Sounds amazing, doesn't it? 

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Because we want a dreamy summer for you as much as we want one for ourselves, we're sharing an important announcement about the state of Idaho's water.

Protect yourself and your family from Recreational Water Illnesses this summer!

We're sharing what they are, where they're found, how they're contracted, and the illnesses they cause. 

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An uptick in reported Recreational Water Illnesses are gaining attention from the Idaho Department of Health & Welfare along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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WHAT ARE RECREATIONAL WATER ILLNESSES?

Recreational Water Illnesses, increasingly referred to as RWI's, are swimming-related maladies. 

In short, they're illnesses that can cause nausea, vomiting, cramping, and diarrhea. Like, A LOT of diarrhea.

THEY'RE ALSO CAUSED BY PEOPLE WHO ELECT TO SWIM WHEN THEY HAVE DIARRHEA.

That's right—people afflicted with muddy-butt actually think to themselves, "I have diarrhea! Now's a fantastic time to swim amongst people who aren't in unhealthy co-dependent relationships with their toilet."

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WHERE ARE RWI'S CONTRACTED?

  • private and public swimming pools
  • hot tubs
  • spa tubs
  • splash pads
  • water parks
  • children's water tables
  • oceans
  • and lakes and rivers

Gastrointestinal illnesses impact the stomach and intestinal tract. Diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting are the most common G.I. conditions associated with RWI's. Learn more about crypto from the CDC here.

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5 SUPER CRAPPY REASONS WE DON'T DRINK RECREATIONAL WATER

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ONE || Cryptosporidium, one of the most common RWI's is found in a swimmer's stool. Highly resistant to chlorine, crypto can survive in chlorinated bodies of water for up to 10 days. Learn more about crypto from the CDC here.

TWO || Giardia is also found in a swimmer's stool. And while it's more susceptible to chlorine, it still takes 45 minutes for the disinfecting agent to kill it. Learn more about giardia from the CDC here.

THREE || Shigella-induced diarrhea is so severe, inflicted swimmers often find blood in their stool. Commonly found in water play areas like splash pads and water tables, daycares are advised against recreational water activities. Learn more about shigella from the CDC here.

FOUR || E. coli 0157:H7 is typically contracted by swimmers who swallow lake water. This strand of E. coli also causes extreme and bloodied diarrhea, which can lead to life-threatening conditions. Poorly disinfected swimming pools, hot tubs, and spa tubs, along with with contaminated beaches are all possible infection sites. Learn more about E. coli from the CDC here.

FIVE || Noroviruses are HIGHLY contagious! Spread through stool and vomit, illness from these viruses set in suddenly. Typically found at beaches or in lakes, symptoms include painful stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. While chlorine does help kill noroviruses, the CDC warns against drinking pool water at any time. Learn more about noroviruses from the CDC here.

To keep your summer footloose and diarrhea-free, avoid drinking recreational water at all costs!

And if your a** is runnier than ranch dressing, now's not the time for laps at the Y or floating the river.

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