Others are erroneous products of past studies and may seem credible. But in any case, here are the five most common myths about Chlorine in swimming pools and the truth behind them.
Myth #1: Chlorine in pool water has stronger scent the more concentrated it is. Therefore, the water is cleaner.
Truth: Its actually quite the opposite, since the scent is produced by Chlorine bonding with Nitrogen in the water to form chloramines. This is caused by contaminants such as sweat or even urine. In fact, one vital factor in determining the cleanliness of a swimming pool is the absence of chemical scents.
Myth #2: Swimmers Ear is caused by too much Chlorine.
Truth: Swimmers Ear is not caused by irritation due to Chlorine. Its actually caused by a bacterial infection commonly found in unsanitary swimming pools and its primary symptoms include skin rashes, earache and stomach pains.
Myth #3: Chlorine will turn Blonde hair green.
Truth: Yes, getting a dip in a pool for blondes can make their hair green, but not because of Chlorine, since this is commonly caused by high Alkaline content present in most brands of shampoo, coupled with copper and other metal residues present in the pool water. This metal presence is mainly caused by either plumbing or algaecides (they are often copper or silver-based).
Myth #4: Chlorine causes eye irritation.
Truth: As stated beforehand, nitrogenous substances such as urine and sweat combined with Chlorine produce chloramines. Chloramines are substances that could also act as sanitizers, but theyre not as efficient as free chlorine due to the fact that they dont have oxidizing capabilities. Free chlorine has a high level of oxidizing ability which is necessary to kill off bacteria and other microorganisms. Chloramines, on the other hand, cause the eye irritation among swimmers due to the fact that they are not managed properly, unlike the standard free Chlorine.
Myth #5: Chlorine causes Asthma and other Respiratory Diseases.
Truth: Occupational Asthma among professional swimmers isnt caused by free Chlorine. Again, Chloramines found in the water and air (most of the time nitrogen trichloride) induces these respiratory diseases, especially for indoor chlorinated swimming pools. Even people who dont enter the water may develop asthma because of these chloramines.
With all these debunked myths, the main point to consider is this: theres a lot of confusion between Chlorine and Chloramines. To put it in the simplest form possible, Chlorine helps kill bacteria (or oxidize them, so to speak) in pool water. Theyre the most efficient way of keeping the pool sanitized and safe. Chloramines, on the other hand, are unwanted products of Chlorines interaction with organic substances or contaminants, such as sweat and urine. They are detrimental to respiratory health and could be a common indication of an unsanitary swimming pool. In short, knowing the different between these two substances is the key in determining the cleanliness of a swimming pool.