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Is swimming pool chlorine bad for you?

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Yes, chlorine is a toxic gas that was first used during the First World War as Chemical Weapon, commonly known as mustard gas.

In swimming pools, chlorine reacts readily with organic matter such as hair, skin, urine, debris to form organochlorines. These polluting and extremely toxic molecules are commonly known as disinfection byproducts or trihalomethanes (THMs) and are highly carcinogenic. Dose response experiments in animals have shown a direct correlation between the amount of THMs consumed and onset of cancer.

The WHO (world health organization) has limited THMs in drinking water to 100 micrograms per litre. Most chlorine pools exceed this limit by up to 6-fold, mainly in the form of chloroform. In salt water chlorinated pools THM levels greater than 12-fold have been measured, mainly in the form of bromoform. So surprisingly salt water pools contain higher levels of THMs than chlorine pools.

Chlorine and salt chlorinated pools also produce chloramines (that familiar chlorine smell). A recent scientific study showed a clear link between chloramine exposure and the onset of asthma and other allergies later in life.

Best to avoid chlorine altogether and look for alternative 100% chlorine free systems to sanitise your pool.
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