An unsettling number of adults admitted they would still swim in pools even if they had diarrhea, a study revealed.
Twenty-five percent of people confessed to the unsanitary act in a federal study by the Water Quality and Health Council.
The findings emerged this week - as the CDC warns there is a growing cases of infections caused by Cryptosporidium, a parasite found that can cause diarrhea.
Outbreaks of diarrhea caused by swallowing swimming pool water containing parasites have doubled in the past few years.
Health officials have long-warned against swimmers to avoid drinking the water but even still, 60 percent of adults still do so.
Twenty-five percent of people confessed they would still swim in pools even if they had diarrhea, causing concern at the CDC due to the growing outbreak of infections because of the condition
The study was conducted on behalf of the Water Quality and Health Council and adults admitted to the startling behavior.
People who are sick with diarrhea are advised to stay clear of community pools for two weeks, but an alarming amount said they jumped into water just an hour later of displaying symptoms.
Dr. Chris Wiant, chair of the Water Quality and Health Council, advocates for people to shower before getting into a community pool and to not pee while in the pool.
Infections occur when swimmers ingest water contaminated by diarrhea from a person infected by Cryptosporidium or Crypto, a parasite that is notoriously difficult to kill.
Crypto caused at least 32 outbreaks in swimming pools or water parks in 2016, compared with 16 in 2014, according to a report published in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's weekly report on death and disease.
CAN POOP BE GOOD FOR YOU?
Fecal microbial therapy, or fecal transplants, are the transfer of a fecal sample from a healthy donor to a recipient.
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This bacterium causes severe diarrhea and inflammation. Recurrent infections are extraordinarily debilitating and life-threatening.
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For complex gut health issues, the effectiveness of fecal transplants is either much lower, or not proven.
Of two published studies of fecal transplants for inflammatory bowel disease, for instance, one found a low effect and one no effect.
Arizona last year reported that 352 people became sick with Cryptosporidiosis from July through October, compared with no more than 62 cases per year from 2011 to 2015.
Ohio reported 1,940 infections in 2016, compared with no more than 571 in any one year from 2012 to 2015.
The CDC said it was not clear if there are actually more outbreaks, or if states are doing a better job of reporting them since it introduced a new DNA-based tracking tool in 2010.
Crypto is the most common cause of diarrhea outbreaks linked with swimming pools or water parks because it can survive up to 10 days in chlorinated water.
It only takes a mouthful of contaminated water to make a healthy person sick for up to three weeks.
The parasites can remain in the body for weeks and can cause symptoms to reappear after recovery.
Infections can cause watery diarrhea, stomach cramps, nausea or vomiting, and can lead to dehydration.
To kill the parasite, the CDC recommends closing pools and treating the water with high levels of chlorine, called hyperchlorination.
The CDC advises parents not to let children swim if they have diarrhea. People who are infected with Crypto should wait two weeks after the diarrhea stops before swimming.
And to keep from getting sick, the CDC advises swimmers not to swallow pool water.