I think that swimming is kind of fun – JD, 5
JD started swimming lessons recently and what was the first thing the more experienced parents in the balcony told me? That I could expect him to pick up plenty of bugs. BUGS?! In a swimming pool? That basin of bleachy cleanliness? Surely not?
But of course, all that chlorine is there to try to combat the reality that dozens of people are effectively passing in and out of a giant, shared bath, full of tiny bacteria capable of causing eye, ear, respiratory and stomach infections. Ew.
Now, it’s obviously not a huge concern if the kids pick up the odd cold, but we were keen to take the opportunity to support JD in his understanding of good hygiene practices, so we’re following a simple routine:
- Shower before getting in the pool. Not everyone bothers, but by showering, JD is doing his bit to reduce the number of bugs dispersing into the water
- Spray with Sterimar before and after swimming. A quick mist of natural seawater into each nostril helps clear out his nasal passages
- Encourage good breathing practice and discourage swallowing water. This is something JD’s coaches are helping him with to avoid choking and reduce introduction of chemicals and bacteria into the lungs and gut
- Shower after swimming. A quick shower rinses the chlorine off his skin (important as an eczema sufferer) but also reduces the likelihood he’ll bring bugs home with him
- Wash hands. When we swim, we always head out for lunch afterwards. By ensuring we all wash our hands before eating, we avoid transferring germs from the changing rooms into our mouths
Simple measures, easily forgotten when you’re rushing between swimming classes, play dates, school and all the rest, but worth it to avoid unnecessary infections.
Disclosure: I am a sponsored Sterimar Baby Amabassador.