When it comes to beating the heat, there's nothing like a cool dip in the pool. Even the littlest kids enjoy splashing around in the water, too. But you should know about the gross things that lurk in the kiddie pool so you can keep your family safe. After all, nothing ruins the summer fun quite like a sudden stomach bug.
Although it may look super inviting and refreshing, the kiddie pool is, at its heart, a stagnant pond in your backyard. If left out for too long, that pool water can get disgusting in no time. And even chlorinating the tiny pool may not remove all the nasties. "It's difficult to maintain the proper chlorine concentration in a small volume water and large quantity of people shedding germs and feces," said Kelly Reynolds, PhD, in Buzzfeed. When the volume of water is that tiny, it's an even trickier situation.
Still, it isn't like you have to throw away the kiddie pool and swear off this summery pastime for good. Using fresh water for each splash session, and emptying the kiddie pool of water once playtime is over, can reduce the risk of sickness, as noted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If the pool is too big to empty out every day, then it needs a filtration and disinfection system. Otherwise, it's just nasty stagnant water that can contain all sorts of unpleasant stuff. Here's a small selection of the gross stuff that can hang out in a kiddie pool.