Infectious disease doctor told how you can get infected when bathing

In the hot summer, plunging into cool water is a delight. But in a pond, a river, a water park and even at sea, dangers lie in wait for us. About which ones, “” Denis Usenko, an infectious disease doctor, executive director of the National Scientific Society of Infectious Diseases, Doctor of Medical Sciences, said.

It is most dangerous to swim in closed fresh water bodies: ponds, lakes, small rivers, as well as in pools where processing rules are not followed water.

The risk of infection is statistically lower in salty sea water, where few pathogens can survive.

There are three groups of health problems caused by microorganisms found in water bodies. Among them – diseases of the skin and mucous membranes (conjunctivitis, otitis externa, stomatitis, etc.), respiratory diseases, diseases of the gastrointestinal system.

It is easy to become infected with pathogens of intestinal infections in water – viruses and bacteria. Among viruses, the most common are: rotavirus, norovirus, enterovirus.

Among bacteria, the most dangerous pathogens are cholera, escherichiosis, shigellosis (dysentery), salmonellosis.

Also, a number of parasites can be infected by water (Cryptosporidium, Giardia, etc.).

Infection occurs mainly when water is swallowed while bathing. Some groups of infections can affect the mucous membrane of the eyes and mouth, others penetrate the gastrointestinal tract and through the skin.

Symptoms depend on which system of the body was affected by the infection. But the rate of development of symptoms depends on which pathogen caused problems. With viral intestinal infections, the clinic of the disease, as a rule, manifests itself very quickly: from several hours to 1-2 days. Bacterial infections make themselves felt within 3-5   days.

It is important to compare the symptoms and the place of the suspected infection so that special services can check the quality of water in a reservoir, hotel or water park.

How to recover depends on which system of the body was affected. In acute intestinal infections, the key rule – it is to start desoldering (rehydration) as early as possible. It is necessary to solder a child or an adult fractionally, gradually. You will also need enterosorbents and a diet. The menu for acute intestinal infections should be gentle, based on steam dishes.

For bacterial intestinal infections, the use of non-absorbable intestinal antiseptics is recommended. It is important to know that they will not help with viral intestinal infections. One of the most studied and safe preparations of this group – enterofuril.

Skin infections, such as cercariasis, will require symptomatic topical antipruritic anti-inflammatory treatment, plus topical antibiotic therapy and skin antiseptic treatment. In addition, systemic antiallergic therapy (antihistamines) will be needed, given that the main symptoms are associated with the death of the parasite inside the skin, which is accompanied by the release of allergens. If the disease is severe, see a doctor, but often all symptoms disappear after five to six days.

Conjunctivitis and blepharitis associated with the ingress of infected water are treated with antibiotic-based eye drops. It is also possible to use hormonal ointments to reduce the severity of the inflammatory and allergic reactions. But if the symptoms of the infection persist for more than three days, contacting an ophthalmologist is mandatory, this will avoid the development of complicated forms of eye damage with severe, adverse outcomes.

Basic prevention rules: do not get into the water where it is indicated that it is forbidden to swim (especially, you should not do this in water bodies where ducks swim), take a shower immediately after swimming, rinse your eyes thoroughly, do not dive or swallow water when swimming, do not drink water from a reservoir, stream, be careful with eating fresh seafood and river mussels.

Earlier, therapist Lyudmila Lapa named the optimal water temperature for swimming in summer, and also told how to prevent hypothermia.

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