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Can chlorine cause cold symptoms?

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Old 02-18-2004, 06:40 AM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 1
deanw HB User
Can chlorine cause cold symptoms?

Last week I swam in a chlorinated pool for about 25 minutes. About 2 days later I started feeling something like a cold - sore throat followed by body aches, fatigue, slightly runny nose, some coughing, little or no fever. No rash or any other sign of a contact allergy.

This may be just a coincidence, but I remember catching a cold a few years ago after what may be the most recent time I took a long swim. Is it possible for cold-like symptoms to result from exposure to chlorine or other chemicals?

I am a 47-year-old man with no known allergies.

Thanks for any comments.

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Old 02-18-2004, 07:11 AM   #2
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 941
chigs489 HB User
Re: Can chlorine cause cold symptoms?

Yes, chlorine can cause sinus irritation, especially if your sinuses were somewhat irritated before you got into the pool.

Chlorinated water can also cause problems for people with inner ear disorders such as vestibular neuritis or ETD.

If you had a fever, chances are, this was a viral problem, and not an allergy issue. You will see that most people here (myself included) who have debilitating allergy problems, don't generally run fevers, even when there is a bacterial infection of the sinuses.

I think you are safe to swim.

Old 02-18-2004, 12:13 PM   #3
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 172
PinkBanana HB User
Re: Can chlorine cause cold symptoms?

I'm really really allergic to high doses of chlorinated water.. Last summer I was in Cancun, Mexico(wooohooo=) ) and I noticed everyday after going out and into the pool I'd get break out in hives all over. We eliminated sunscreens and figured it wasn't heat rash..and then we also found out the pool I was swimming in has TEN times the chlorine levels it should have!
Granted I like the pool being very clean and all but TEN TIMES??
Nevertheless it wasn't fun being in Mexico trying to explain to doctors and pharmacists who don't know a word of english what is going on and what I need..
I don't get this reaction in normal levels of chlorinated pool though. Just when it's really high.
Anyways my point I'm trying to make is maybe you are sensitive to the higher amounts of chlorine and that's why it doesn't happen everytime. Antihistamines and Sudafed should fix ya=)

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