Pool Hygiene

Swimming Pool Hygiene for Children

30 September 2023
Posted by: Chelsea

Swimming Pool Hygiene for Children: Little is more fun for younger children than splashing around in a swimming or paddling pool. While everyone’s having fun though, it’s important to keep hygiene in mind.

In what follows, we’re discussing private domestic swimming or paddling pools. Public venues will be subject to their own rules and regulations.

Swimming pool hygiene for children

While the kids are having a wonderful time, adults are obliged to recognise a few less pleasant realities of life!

Children are likely to pee in the pool, even though they should be encouraged not to do so. Sometimes, accidents might happen with poo as well and particularly so with toddlers.

It’s also a fact that some children might swim when they have some form of infection or another. You’ll also very likely see some children (or adults) with cuts, grazes or other partly open wounds.

This might also sound horrific but in reality, this is part of life and children shouldn’t miss out on the wonderful fun swimming pools can be. There are a few steps everyone can take to help manage these risks down.

Basic hygiene

The regulations surrounding private pools may vary depending on state or territory and local council area.

Whatever the rules are, it is sensible to ensure that the pool water is treated with appropriate chemicals and that the water is being circulated through an appropriate filtration system. Assuming these two things are in place, many infection risks will be eliminated or much reduced.

Be cautious about swimming in a pool where the water is clearly not being circulated and filtered. If it is not your pool, ask the owner to confirm it has been chlorine or similarly treated.

Personal hygiene

However well the water is filtered and treated, fouling the water at a given moment may introduce health risks for other users. Therefore, all parents should adopt the following practices:

  • do not let your child use a swimming pool if they have or have very recently recovered from any form of gastro-intestinal ‘bug’. They should also not be allowed to enter if they are suffering from a cold, conjunctivitis or a respiratory/ear infection, even if their symptoms are minor;
  • require them to go to the toilet before entering the pool. Once they’re in, extract them fairly frequently and ask them to go again. Don’t wait for them to say they need to because, in the excitement, that may be far too late;
  • purchase ‘pool nappies’ to go under their costume by way of a just-in-case;
  • children should not swim if they have any sort of open or weeping wound;
  • shower your child before they go into the pool, making sure they’re clean around their anus and genitals;
  • tell them not to drink the water in the pool or swallow it;
  • if you witness another child’s ‘toilet accident’ in the pool, remove your children immediately;
  • in situations where you’re changing their pool nappy, your hands must be thoroughly washed, as should the child’s bottom and genitals prior to them going back into the pool;
  • A child that has recently suffered from diarrhoea, even if it has seemingly cleared in the past day or so, should not be allowed to swim. That applies even if the cause of the diarrhoea wasn’t clear;
  • do not allow pets to swim in the pool if it is yours. If it’s someone else’s pool, if you see pets swimming in the water at the same time as children, you should remove your child from the pool.

These are all very basic sensible hygiene practices and they should not spoil the spontaneity of a kid’s swimming fun. Check our programs for children or book a visit.

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