Attitude, Pain

The First World Problems of Ocean Swimming

Forget about sharks, drownings and being run down by a powerboat. The most likely affliction caused by swimming in the ocean is an ear ache, followed by a stomach bug. This anticlimactic and largely first world news comes from researchers at the University of Exeter, who analyzed the medical complaints of more than 120,000 people in 19 studies that looked at the links between sea bathing and the incidence of illness in countries including the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark and Norway. The researchers found that sea bathing doubled the odds of reporting general ear ailments. The odds of reporting an ear ache rose by 77 percent, and odds for gastrointestinal illnesses increased by 29 percent.


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