Chlorine is a common option for disinfecting pool water. It is necessary to keep bacteria and algae down in the water. However, if there is too much of it, chlorine in a pool can be dangerous. There are several conditions and health concerns that can be caused by an over chlorinated pool. They range from minor to deadly. For that reason, many health experts recommend finding other ways to reduce water contamination.
On the minor side of health problems due to chlorine, too much exposure to it can cause eye and skin irritation. The eyes can become red and itchy, or burning. Some people may develop a skin rash. In severe cases, the chemical can cause burns to the skin. Another health concern from exposure to high levels of chlorine is that it can trigger an asthma attack in those who suffer from the disease. The chemical fumes are a lung irritant, so it is recommended that pool owners use salt and copper-silver disinfectant in place of chlorine to reduce the risk of respiratory health problems.
The two most serious risks to high exposure to chlorine are cancer and miscarriages. When the chlorine has a chemical reaction with skin cells or some sunscreen lotions, it creates a dangerous chemical called triholomethanes. This is absorbed through the skin. It can cause bladder, breast or rectal cancer. There is also early evidence that the same chemical can contribute to miscarriage. In that way, an over chlorinated pool becomes tragically dangerous. If a pool seems to have too much chlorine, avoid using it and report it to the pool operator so that the water can be tested and the chlorine levels can be corrected.