Navigation Links
Chlorine in Pools Raises Kids' Asthma, Allergy Risk

Too many homes over-treat their pools, boosting the odds, experts say,,,,

MONDAY, Sept. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Swimming in pools disinfected with chlorine may increase the odds that a child will develop asthma or allergies, new research suggests.

The study found that teenagers who spent more than 1,000 hours swimming in chlorinated pools, either indoors or outdoors, had more than eight times the risk of having asthma than did teens who primarily swam in pools using a copper-silver disinfecting method.

"Chlorinated pool attendance has a very significant impact on the prevalence of allergic diseases in the studied population," said lead author Alfred Bernard, a professor of toxicology and research director at Catholic University of Louvain in Brussels, Belgium.

"When used properly, [chlorine] is an efficient and safe disinfectant for swimming pools. However, when too much chlorine is added to water or builds up in the air of indoor pools, there is unavoidably some irritation of the organs of the bather in contact with the water and air," he explained. "There is now increasing evidence that these irritating effects may be detrimental to the airways of regular swimmers, especially the children who are the most vulnerable and the most frequent attendees of chlorinated pools."

Results of the study will be published in the Sept. 14 online issue of Pediatrics.

More than 17 million people in the United States have asthma, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Symptoms of the disease include wheezing, shortness of breath and coughing. The airway disease can be triggered by a number of factors, such as cold air, exercise and chemical irritants. While chlorine has long been known to be an airway irritant and potential trigger of asthma, particularly in indoor pools, Bernard's study suggests that chlorinated pools might play a role in the development of asthma and allergy.

The study included 847 Belgian teenagers between the ages of 13 and 18. All had attended indoor or outdoor swimming pools, but at various rates of attendance. One hundred and fourteen children mainly attended pools that were kept clean with a copper-silver disinfect, rather than chlorine. The remainder primarily attended pools disinfected with chlorine.

The number of children who ever had asthma went up in proportion to their chlorinated pool exposure. Teens who swam for 100 to 500 hours in chlorinated pools had an 80 percent increased risk of having asthma, while those who logged 500 to 1,000 hours had just over twice the risk. When teens spend more than 1,000 hours swimming in chlorinated water, the risk of ever having had asthma nearly quadrupled. The risk of currently having asthma was more than eight times higher in the group with more than 1,000 hours in chlorinated pools compared to those who were rarely in chlorinated water, according to the study.

The risk of allergies also increased significantly when adolescents spent more than 100 hours swimming in chlorinated pools. In fact, the risk of hay fever and other allergies more than doubled with significant chlorinated pool exposure.

Dr. Jennifer Appleyard, chief of allergy and immunology at St. John Hospital and Medical Center in Detroit, said this study highlights the fact that "asthma and allergies are caused by a multitude of different factors, and chlorine may have a potential effect. But, this is a very preliminary study, and we don't yet know what the whole picture is."

She said that she wouldn't advise parents to stop taking their kids swimming, even if they have asthma already. "If your kids have asthma and you know chlorine is a trigger, it's a good idea to try to limit their exposure, but you can't exclude your child from everything and every potential trigger. You have to let them be kids."

If you know your child is bothered by chlorine exposure, and they have an event such as a birthday party that they really want to attend, discuss it with your child's doctor to find out the best way to manage the exposure.

Bernard said that if you have a backyard pool, you should use as little chlorine as you can to safely disinfect the pool. He said that many people over chlorinate their pools to get clear blue water. But, he said, "chlorine is a disinfectant, not a cleaning agent."

More information

Learn more about asthma triggers and controlling asthma from the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology.

SOURCES: Alfred Bernard, Ph.D., professor, toxicology and research director, Catholic University of Louvain, Brussels, Belgium; Jennifer Appleyard, M.D., chief, allergy and immunology, St. John Hospital and Medical Center, Detroit; Sept. 14, 2009, Pediatrics online

Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. CDG Environmental LLC Acquires Assets for Chlorine Dioxide Product Lines
2. Preparing for a Chlorine Gas Disaster
3. New study examines effects of Graniteville, S.C., chlorine gas disaster
4. AWWA Marks 100th Anniversary of Chlorine Disinfection
5. Seven Tips for Safer Home Swimming Pools and Hot Tubs
6. National Health High Risk Pool Association Available to Discuss Role of Pools in President Elect Obamas Health Care Reform Plans
7. Open Biosystems Launches Decode RNAi Viral Screening Pools for Low-Cost Genome-Scale RNAi Screens
8. Purdue lab works to improve conditions at indoor swimming pools
9. Industry Leader Praises Health Reform Bill that Provides 50% Tax Deduction for Long-Term Care Premiums
10. VitaPath Genetics Raises $6M in Series A Round
11. Michigan Chamber of Commerce Joins Employers for Quality Health Care; Calls for Health Care Reform - But Not If It Raises Taxes, Kills Jobs
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Chlorine in Pools Raises Kids' Asthma, Allergy Risk
(Date:11/27/2015)... Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... conversation at the recent 2015 American Dental Association meeting in Washington D.C. revolved around ... help protect a patient’s overall health. The talk stressed the link between periodontal disease ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 27, 2015 , ... The rapid speed at which Americans ... more care is needed, especially with Alzheimer’s, dementia and other cognitive conditions becoming ... The forgotten part of this equation: 80 percent of medical care occurs in ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... "When I ... an inventor from Hillside, N.J. "Many people catch diseases simply from sitting on ... will always be protected from germs." , He developed the patent-pending QUDRATECS to ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... ProSidebar: Fashion is ... Pro X. With ProSidebar: Fasion, video editors can easily add an informative sidebar ... minimalist title opener. Utilize presets featuring self-animating drop zones, lines, bars, and text ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Intellitec ... Dynamics SL User Group (MSDSLUG). Recognized as Microsoft’s official group for end users ... Dynamics SL software users, partners, industry experts and representatives. Intellitec Solutions’ membership status ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... -- Research and Markets ( ) has ... Horizons and Growth Strategies in the Italian Therapeutic ... Forecasts, Competitive Intelligence, Emerging Opportunities" report to ... --> This new 247-page report provides ... monitoring market, including emerging tests, technologies, instrumentation, sales ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 26, 2015 ... of the  "2016 Future Horizons and ... Surface Marker Testing Market: Supplier Shares, ... their offering.  --> ... the  "2016 Future Horizons and Growth ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... SYDNEY , Nov. 26, 2015  The total global ... nearly 7% over 2015-2016. Latin America ... Asia , (excluding Japan ), is ... continues to face increased healthcare expenditure. In 2013-2014, ... expenditure declined from 43.5% in 2008-2009 to 41.2% in 2013-2014. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: