Spotlight on Public Health at the Beach

The beach is a popular summertime destination for individuals, couples, and families alike. However, beach environments can carry certain general health risks, including water-borne illnesses and infections. Taking steps to protect yourself and your family when you visit the beach this summer will reduce your risk of a serious illness that could prompt a hospital visit in West Hills .

Understanding Health Concerns Associated with the Beach

Spending a day at the beach is a great way to enjoy healthy physical activity and time spent with family or friends. However, beach water can carry several microorganisms associated with infections and illnesses in humans, including gastroenteritis, skin irritation and rashes, respiratory illnesses, and infections of the eyes, ears, nose, mouth, and throat. Although most water does not carry harmful microorganisms, water that is contaminated by sewage or other waste and runoff is associated with a higher risk of illness. Additionally, individuals with compromised or still-developing immune systems may be at higher risk for illness following exposure to beach water.

Enjoying Good Health at the Beach

There are several ways to ensure your family enjoys good health at the beach . Before planning your trip, take some time to research your local beaches and the quality of their water to find a beach that isn’t located near sources of contamination or noted as having a high public health risk. Never visit a beach that has been closed for any reason, and follow any posted advisories, including avoiding areas that are noted as off-limits. Make sure to schedule regular bathroom breaks for children and ensure family members wash and dry their hands and face completely before eating or drinking any refreshments you may have brought.

Are you ready to enjoy a healthy summer full of fun? At West Hills Hospital, our medical care team and emergency care center are dedicated to helping you and your family achieve greater wellness and a healthy lifestyle. You can get more health tips on our online health library or H2U resource page, or by calling (818) 676-4321.

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