Skip to content

    Health & Pregnancy

    Font Size

    Pool Water Risky During Pregnancy


    Swimmers are at great risk because they are exposed for long periods of time and because THMs can be absorbed through the skin and inhaled from the air around the pool, he says.

    Studies have shown that a one-hour swim in a chlorinated pool could result in a THM dose 141 times higher than what you get taking a shower, or a dose 93 times higher than drinking a glass of tap water.

    Further research is needed to understand the link between THMs and potential health risks, writes Nieuwenhuijsen. In the meantime, he calls for swimming pool owners to reduce THM levels "as far as possible ... while maintaining effective control against waterborne microbiological disease."

    The other studies that Nieuwenhuijsen mentions have actually found lower levels of THMs than this study did, Bennett says.

    Also, all studies of THMs have been done in Europe, he says. "We don't know whether they chlorinate the same as we do in U.S. pools, whether they maintain pools like we do."

    "I see this as more of a water quality problem than a swimming pool problem," Bennett says. "If the chemical is that bad, we need to be looking at how it got into drinking water. I would be much more concerned about that."

    Pregnant lifeguards at indoor swimming pools have been known to suffer from different illnesses -- like certain lung problems -- because of the continuous exposure to chlorinated water, he tells WebMD. Whether THMs are a risk for pregnant women who are not lifeguards, "I just don't know," he says. "You can't say from this study that it is."

    1 | 2

    Pregnancy Week-By-Week Newsletter

    Delivered right to your inbox, get pictures and facts on
    what to expect each week of your pregnancy.

    Today on WebMD

    hand circling date on calendar
    Track your most fertile days.
    woman looking at ultrasound
    Week-by-week pregnancy guide.
    Pretty pregnant woman timing contaction pains
    The signs to watch out for.
    pregnant woman in hospital
    Are there ways to do it naturally?
    slideshow fetal development
    pregnancy first trimester warning signs
    What Causes Bipolar
    Woman trying on dress in store
    pregnant woman
    Woman looking at pregnancy test
    calendar and baby buggy
    dark chocolate squares