Swimming in ocean increases infection risk Study

Surfer scratching head

Surfer scratching head

The examine was prompted by earlier analysis displaying a hyperlink between ocean swimming and infections and by excessive charges of poor water high quality at many seashores, which might result in pores and skin infections, ear infections and gastrointestinal and respiratory sickness. Therefore, it becomes essential for an individual to understand how the skin's bacteria changes when exposed to ocean water.

A team went to a California beach and recruited a set of beach goers, who only swam in the ocean infrequently and weren't using sunscreen.

They collected samples of skin bacteria from the legs of nine people before they took a 10-minute swim in the ocean, after they had air-dried completely following their swim, and then six and 24 hours after their swim. Six hours after swimming, Vibrio had been nonetheless current on a lot of the members, however 24 hours after swimming, exclusively one participant had them.

Swimming in the ocean alters the skin microbiome and increases the risk of infection including that of the ear and skin, researchers said.

They found that, before the swim, the microbiome of each volunteer was easily distinguishable.

Before swimming, all the participants had different communities of bacteria on them, but after swimming, they had similar communities of bacteria completely different from the ones they had before.

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"While many Vibrio are not pathogenic, the fact that we recovered them on the skin after swimming demonstrates that pathogenic Vibrio species could potentially persist on the skin after swimming", Nielsen said.

At six hours post-swim, they were still present on most of the volunteers, but by 24 hours, they were present only on one individual.

"One very interesting finding was that Vibrio species-only identified to the genus level-were detected on every participant after swimming in the ocean, and air drying", said. At six hours post swim, the microbiomes had begun to revert to their pre-swim composition, and at 24 hours, they were far along in that process. Upon testing, researchers found that while most of the bacteria were essentially harmless, they also discovered the presence of the Vibrio species, which includes the bacterium that causes cholera.

The results, it should be noted, are a work in progress; they're being presented at the American Society for Microbiology's annual conference this week. Researchers detected even more ocean bacteria on some participants, while other participants acquired more persistent bacteria which lasted for a longer time.

What's more, recent studies have shown that skin microbiome is an important player in immunity and protection against infectious diseases.

Healthy skin microbiome protects our immune system.

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