The day after our recent summer getaway at Montemar Beach Club, my son Justin developed skin rash mostly on his stomach and back, and he also had low-grade fever. When he did not improve after two days, we went to his pedia for a consult. Dr. O. said Justin suffered from hypersensitivity reaction most probably from the chlorine used in the resort’s swimming pools. He was prescribed the following medications: an antipyretic for his fever, a corticosteroid for his skin rash, and an antihistamine for itching. Curiosity got the better of me, however, so I researched on the Internet about chlorine, its uses and its negative effects on the body.
What is chlorine?
Chlorine is a naturally-occurring chemical element, which is an essential nutrient for plants and animals. It is one of the basic building blocks of matter and is scattered throughout the rocks of the Earth’s continents and concentrated in its salty oceans.
What are the uses of chlorine?
The many uses of chlorine are as follows:
1. It is used to disinfect water and is part of the sanitation process for sewage and industrial waste.
2. It is used as a bleaching agent.
3. It is used in cleaning products, including household bleach which is chlorine dissolved in water.
4. It is used in the preparation of chlorides, chlorinated solvents, pesticides, polymers, synthetic rubbers, and refrigerants.
What are the negative effects of chlorine on the body?
The harmful effects of chlorine include:
•Dry, brittle, lusterless hair
• Dry, aging skin
• Skin rashes and irritation
• Respiratory problems
• Tissue cell damage
• Cardiovascular disease
Now I’m thinking, should I be allowing my son to dip into another swimming pool again?