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Can you get the flu from swimming pools?

Flu season is coming in hot, and this year is expected to be worse than others. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released a statement explaining that this year's strain, the A(H3N2), has been known to cause more hospitalizations and fatalities than the A(H1N1) that's circulated in previous years. As pools are likely places where germs can easily spread from one person to the next, it's only natural to wonder – can you get the flu from swimming?

Is the flu in your own backyard?
The short answer is yes. As Every Day Health summarized, germs that cause the flu and other illnesses spread so fast because people transmit it by simple motions, like a sneeze or a cough. Everyone from children to coworkers to spouses can be culprits. If any of them uses the pool, it can easily get to you.

The CDC suggested that people take extra steps to reduce their chances of catching the influenza virus. In addition to annual vaccinations, people may consider talking to their physicians about certain medications. The CDC statement specifically named neuraminidase inhibitor antiviral medications as a means to prevent the flu. It may even help people who have already been diagnosed with the flu, so long as it's administered within a 48-hour time period. It's been known to reduce fever and other symptoms. Overall, this form of treatment has been associated with an overall lower fatality count from the flu. 

Reduce your odds
The CDC notes that it's especially important to take care of yourself to reduce your chances of getting the flu. Make health your primary focus this winter and stay on track by eating nutritional foods, getting enough sleep and working out on a regular basis. You'd be surprised at just how much sleep can affect your body's ability to fight off diseases, like the flu. That's the prime time that your immune system repairs itself and grows stronger to handle new diseases. Additionally, you should make sure your home is as clean as can be, including the pool. 

Have your pool chemicals balanced more frequently because chlorine is what kills germs and makes the water a less contaminated place to swim. If you haven't started planning, call Fort Worth, San Diego and Phoenix pool service professionals. The staff can take care of your chemical balance and other maintenance duties while you're out and about. You can get your flu shot and pool balanced at the same time.