CDC Confirms That It's the Pee in the Pool That Makes Your Eyes Red


With swimsuit season finally here, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have decided to brighten your summer by releasing an important new report which confirms that yes, your gross red swimmer’s eyes are caused by the large amounts of pee in the pool and not by chlorine as previously thought.

Listen, everyone pees in the pool. I know it, you know it, and just because we don’t talk about it doesn’t mean it’s not happening. But there should be absolutely no reason that there should be so much golden sunshine spilled in a given pool that it makes you look like you haven’t been sleeping for days while also consuming large amounts of marijuana. We live in a society, people; we need to start acting like it. Because it gets even worse from here on out.

From Women’s Health:

So what horrifying info would the CDC like to share with you? For starters, it turns out that your red eyes after swimming aren’t coming from an irritation to the chlorine. “It’s quite the opposite,” says Beach. “Chlorine binds with all the things it’s trying to kill from your bodies, and it forms these chemical irritants. That’s what’s stinging your eyes. It’s the chlorine binding to the urine and the sweat.” He gives another example of what can happen to you when chlorine binds to urine and sweat in a pool: that cough you get from an indoor pool. The trapped chemical reaction is what irritates your lungs.

Here’s just another fun tidbit about chlorine. Did you know it has no smell? In fact, a chlorinated pool that’s clean should have no odor. If it does, that’s not a sign that you should jump right in—it’s a sign that the pool needs a thorough cleaning because no one has taken a goddamn shower before getting in to swim. That smell that causes the inside of your nose to burn like you’ve just ingested a whole Glad bag of coke is actually the result of of the chlorine binding with nitrogen and causing chemical irritants called chloramines to be born.

From the Huffington Post:

The second cause for worry is the chloramines are what’s making that pool smell like, well, a pool. “A good healthy pool does not smell,” says Hlavsa, despite what most of us would like to believe. That smell we often attribute to a clean pool is actually the chloramines, which are also responsible for making your eyes red when you swim. The irritants are also thought to trigger asthma attacks and may even lead to some skin irritation, she says.

While chlorine still kills most of the germs in the pool, Huff Po reports that the stuff it doesn’t kill because you didn’t take a shower beforehand/peed in the pool real hard instead of getting out and doing it into a bush like a human and not an animal is responsible for 10,000 illnesses a year. That’s not a huge number, but no one wants to be the person who caught a cold from ingesting too much urine at the YMCA. And, Women’s Health points out, humans have become so gross that there’s a new parasite that’s evolved to be immune to chlorine meaning that more people than ever are getting sick. So if you have a baby that doesn’t know how to control its bowels, a dirty ass, or an open wound, you should stay out of the pool for the sake of others. And shower before you get in! I know that’s counterintuitive because who’s going to shower before getting into more water, but it’s an important part of keeping our pools safe.

Do the same thing at the beach. It turns out that just because a body of water is vast and beautiful doesn’t mean you’re not catching diarrhea germs from people nearby.

From Women’s Health.

“If you’re swimming next to someone who has diarrhea, there’s no protection,” says [Michael J. ]Beach. In fact, there was recently a large norovirus outbreak at a lake in Oregon, says Beach—and according to a CDC investigation, health experts suspect that the outbreak began when someone infected with the norovirus swam in (and had diarrhea or vomited in) the lake.

Good talk! Let’s never go swimming again.

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Image via Shutterstock

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