Throughout the years, swimming pools have provided exercise and recreation for many individuals. Unluckily, some still suffer from allergic reactions and skin irritation from the chemical disinfection procedure required to keep the water safe for everybody. Even though there are distinct drawbacks in the chlorine-based disinfection, it is considered highly effective in preventing diseases caused by E. coli and other types of bacteria. The issues start, particularly skin irritation when poor maintenance results to excessive amounts of chlorine as well as unbalanced pool water levels.
What is superchlorination?
Once a large number of individuals bathe in a swimming pool and the excess amount of contaminants overly burdens the current chlorination, superchlorination is used in order to shock the pool back into proper hygiene control. Take note that superchlorination involves the addition of large amounts of chlorine at once to the swimming pool.
Due to the high levels of chlorine, swimmers are not allowed to enter the pool until the chlorine is reduced through evaporation and the chemical interactions are within safe and acceptable levels. Those who enter superchlorinated pools face the risk for severe lung irritation as well as skin irritation.
Levels and adjustments in the pool
The level of chlorine in swimming pools should fall in between 1 and 3 ppm. Oftentimes, human error can lead to over chlorination and swimming in pools that contains high amounts of chlorine can lead to health issues including lung, eye and skin irritation.
The pH balance of swimming pool water is also a possible culprit for skin irritation along with the disinfection process. Excess amounts of chlorine will make the water too acidic or too alkaline for human comfort. If the water falls outside the 7.2-7.8 recommended pH range, it can lead to skin irritation and inflammation. The proper balance of the chemicals in the water can help avoid allergic reactions or dermatitis from developing.
In some cases, an individual is more sensitive to the chlorine disinfection process than others. Even with the normal level of chlorine, some can suffer from dermatitis upon exposure. Dermatitis is described as dry, itchy and reddened skin. The elevated level of chlorine can trigger a variety of symptoms that range from blistered skin to inflamed skin from direct exposure with highly concentrated chlorine. Some of the dermatitis-like skin irritations can occur due to poor pool maintenance, including the addition of too much chlorine.
Important considerations to bear in mind
There are some individuals who cannot stand the side effects of the chemical process. Take note that swimming outdoors is better since the ventilation is greater than the covered pools. Some individuals might believe that skin issues might be due to excess chlorine but in reality, the skin irritation is due to the less amounts of the chlorine. If you want to learn how to heal with the skin irritation due to exposure to chlorine, click here.
Once the byproducts of the disinfection process accumulate in a swimming pool, the chloramines generate the bad smell as well as the lung and skin irritation.