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swimming in the cenotes?

carrollton, ga
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swimming in the cenotes?

Anyone know if there is any risk of water born disease in the cenotes? My wife is very reluctant to go swimming in one but I think it sounds like fun. I suspect the water is not flowing or replenished from an underground spring so any concerns about amoebic diseases or other aqueous pathogens?

I know it seems strange but I promised her I would check into it.

Erie, Colorado
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1. Re: swimming in the cenotes?

Quite honestly, there is the risk of water borne illnesses in ANY body of water anywhere. That includes swimming pools. Keeping your mouth closed is a good defense. There's no great risk that I've ever heard of though. the water in the cents is flowing though.

Center Valley...
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2. Re: swimming in the cenotes?

I wouldn't be horribly concerned. They are fed by underwater spring so it's not like a stagnant pool or anything.

I actually chickened out at the cenote though...I got pretty claustrophobic and ended up staying back. It was for the best though, as we had a long day anyways and if I would have snorkeled at the cenote, I don't think I would have had the energy to snorkel with sea turtles later that day.

If your wife is particularly stomach senstive to start with, she could talk to her doctor about preventive antibiotics. My yoga teacher took them when she went to Africa this year.

Also, I'm not sure if it works, but an "old wives tale" is to take grapefruit extract pills if you think you've been exposed to parasites. My yoga teacher fell in the Nile and swallowed a bunch of water, and that's what the locals gave her.

Erie, Colorado
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3. Re: swimming in the cenotes?

Instead of taking preventative antibiotics I would recommend a high quality probiotic. That helps maintain the good bacteria in your gut, whereas antibiotics can kill everything and then you can end up with a yeast infection plus a very unhappy stomach.

I tend to get tummy issues in Mexico, but they have been minimimal to none when I take probiotics. I wouldn't go to Mexico anymore without them. Start them a week or two before you go. And I wil mention, my husband does not take them and he has never had a stomach issue.

MA
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4. Re: swimming in the cenotes?

The cenotes are in many cases much cleaner than any lakes or ponds that you may have near you. The water is filtered through the limestone which is a great way to remove pathogens. So if she would swim in a lake then the cenotes should be fine. I would bet that they are cleaner than alot of the pools at the resorts... in fact my favorite place requires that you shower before going into the water.

Center Valley...
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5. Re: swimming in the cenotes?

That's a good idea as well, Actran!

I normally try to pump up my yogurt intake before we travel...but I always travel with a prescription of antibiotics, in case I need them. I've never had to use them, but I have some drug sensitivities, and you never know what you'll have access to once you're out of the country.

I always have a bit of tummy ickiness when I travel the first day or two, but I think it's more from OD'ing on rich foods & alcohol then anything odd :)

Erie, Colorado
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6. Re: swimming in the cenotes?

I think it is fine to have an Rx or a supply of antibiotics I just don't recommend taking them prophylactically. And actually, antibiotics are one of the easier things to get over the counter in Mexico. But I don't know that I would just take them if one got tummy issues, as it may not be the right treatment or right kind of antibiotic. If the tummy troubles are severe id check with a doctor (and believe me, I don't feel like every little thing needs a dr check). Taking antibiotics unnecessarily is obe of the things that leads to superbugs. But worse, if can cause tummy trouble. Me personally, my tummy issues were usually pretty short lived and I know antibiotics would have been the wrong thing to do. I'm a nurse and it just makes me nervous when people use them for every sore throat and upset stomach.

fairfield, Ct
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7. Re: swimming in the cenotes?

We've been to Mexico several times now and never had a tummy issue at all BUT--we have been careful. We stay at all-inclusives with their own water purification systems, bring bottled water with us when we go off the property and don't eat in some off -the- beaten track kind of place. We bring our own snacks from the hotel[or home] for excursions. It always interests me to hear people complain about Mexico and getting sick and say they are NEVER going back. So much of the time its just all about eating and drinking like there is no tomorrow that gets your system all upset[all-you-can eat-buffets don't mean you HAVE to eat everything in sight!]. I agree with the pro-biotics [no harm in them] and also about bringing antibiotics to under-developed places when you can. I have gotten bladder infections[yikes!] and now I travel with some just in case because , like you, I have some issues with some kinds of antibiotics and even though you can just go and buy them without a prescription in Mexico anyway they only have certain ones and if they are on your 'bad' list then you are in a bind! Any good Dr. here in the States with whom you have a relationship would have no problems giving you a script or some samples to have along just in case!

8. Re: swimming in the cenotes?

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