It’s no secret that the use of a swimming pool is a great form of aerobic exercise because it’s low-impact, which means that it is easy on the joints. However, for individuals with chlorine allergy, it’s something that can do more harm than good. This is especially true if the swimming pool water contains high amounts of chlorine.
Unlike other forms of allergies that manifest themselves right after exposure to allergens, chlorine allergy is a different thing — it can take a long time before some of the signs and symptoms associated with it show up.
Actually, doctors say that chlorine allergy is more detectable in individuals with over 1,000 hours of exposure to chlorine. They include swimmers, lifeguards and professional cleaners who employ chlorine-containing products. On the other hand, people with the said allergy with less frequent exposure to chlorine may not really feel its full impact.
You may be suffering from chlorine allergy and not know it because, again, it may take a long while for the nasty reactions to appear after having contact with chlorine. By the time the signs and symptoms have made their presence known, you may simply have them linked to other health issues.
Signs and Symptoms
The various signs and symptoms of chlorine allergy are similar to those of many other problems. Given the fact that they also tend to show up at a much later time, it can be very easy for chlorine allergy to be mistaken for something else. Seeing an allergist can help determine whether it is chlorine allergy you are suffering from or not.
Here are some of the signs and symptoms associated with chlorine allergy:
Someone who has chlorine allergy will have eye redness, itchiness and/or watering not only by swimming in chlorinated water, but also by employing household products that contain chlorine, in particular those that release toxic fumes laden with chlorine.
If you have chlorine allergy and you happen to ingest chlorinated water while using a swimming pool, it’s not unlikely for you to experience nausea. Doctors say that you may also have bouts of vomiting if you ingest high amounts of chlorine.
Having dry skin that feels taut and itchy (and sometimes flaking) is one of the reactions that a person with chlorine allergy may get. Do take note that skin issues may strike not only when swimming in chlorinated water, but also upon wearing clothes laundered with chlorine-containing products.
Coughing and sneezing
Do you incessantly cough or sneeze each time you use the swimming pool? Then there’s a possibility that you have chlorine allergy. Even smelling products that have chlorine in them is enough to leave you coughing and sneezing.
A person who has chlorine allergy may also experience chest tightness, wheezing and shortness of breath upon coming into contact with chlorine, much like the symptoms encountered during an asthma attack. Due to the seriousness of these reactions, medical attention should be sought ASAP.
Management and Treatment
If you suspect that you have chlorine allergy, the smartest step that you should take is to limit or completely avoid having contact with chlorine. This entails not only avoiding the use of swimming pools, but also refraining from purchasing and using household products that have chlorine in them.
Dealing with the signs and symptoms of chlorine allergy includes the use of topical creams formulated to help relieve skin redness and itchiness, and drops that help control eye irritation.
Again, it is a good idea for you to seek the help of an allergist, a doctor who is specializing in diagnosing and treating allergies, if you suspect that you have chlorine allergy.