Though the word ‘chlorine’ probably makes you think of swimming pools – and indeed, this chemical is commonly used to purify swimming pool water – it is also found in laundry detergent, drinking water, and even in medications and foods. Because chlorine is an irritant, many people experience mild reactions after coming in contact with it. Others, however, a chlorine allergy may cause more serious or persistent symptoms.
Chlorine exposure can cause respiratory issues. The symptoms of a chlorine allergy may mimic those of asthma, including coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness, along with feelings of suffocation as if they cannot get enough air.
Chlorine is also likely to affect the eyes. Many people experience eye irritation, along with symptoms such as redness, burning, itching, and watery eyes. Such symptoms are commonly experienced even by those without a chlorine sensitivity, but those with a chlorine allergy will experience more severe irritation. With prolonged exposure or exposure to high concentrations, the eyelashes may fall out.
Chlorine commonly affects the skin of those with sensitivities to the chemical. Particularly if you swim in a chlorinated pool, your skin may feel unusually dry. Any area that was in contact with the water may feel tight and itchy. It may become red or start to peel like sunburned skin. The skin may also develop itchy rashes within an hour of contact with chlorine. Those with allergies often experience skin rashes when wearing clothes washed in chlorine detergent.
A person exposed to chlorine may feel nauseous, particularly if exposed to a high concentration of concentration. Finally, vomiting and dizziness are possible symptoms of a chlorine allergy.