Why Do We Get Red Dots After Swimming

by Julie

Yes my husband and granddaughter seem to break out with red dots under their arms and between their legs. What can cause this?

I have checked the pH and chlorine levels and it reads ideal. What else could it be that causes this? Dots only appear under arms and between legs.

Thanks for any help.

Thanks for the question Julie

First, I'd like to have your complete chemicals readings: Chlorine, CYA (cyanuric acid/stabilizer), pH, Alkalinity, Calcium Hardness, Metals (iron and copper). It makes troubleshooting much easier and the process of clearing up your pool will go much faster. You can get this done at your local pool store. Without these numbers I'm just guessing at what the problem is. You can also get a Taylor FAS-DPD K-2006 test kit. It's the best one and I've been using it since 1999.

Pool Water Testing

Water Testing Kit

To the best of my knowledge, most of the time when people exhibit these symptoms, it's an allergic reaction to either the chlorine or something in the pool water.

Hot Tub Rash

Chlorine Allergy

When bacteria is present in the water, this is a sign of improper sanitizing of the pool water.

Water Therapy (PT)..Odd Stench On My Hands..

Skin Irritation After Working At A Pool Supply Store

It could be the chlorine is not at the proper level of 1.5 - 3.5ppm. this is the range you want to keep the pool.

Swimming Pool Chlorine

Pool Shock

Pool Chlorine

If the chemicals are in line, and you're out of resources, I'd encourage you to go to your health care provider who can make a proper diagnosis.

To post a reply, or if you have a similar question, you can see your post on the Q&A page in the "Skin & Hair Problems" category.

Swimming Pool Questions and Answers

Check back to this post for answers.

Hope this helps and have a great Summer.


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More Suggestions On How To Avoid Chlorine Reaction

by Kara
(Austin, TX)

Thanks for the webpage! I have found much relief from cold-like symptoms that follow my twice-a-week swims in a tiny bit of antihistamine (e.g., 1/4 of a child's dose) taken after swimming. (I used to sneeze a lot, and pretty much had a cold for 2 or 3 days after my 1-hour swims!

Others have mentioned feeling like they have a cold after swimming, and that's what I had. I hope they can return to the pool with antihistamine treatment!)

I also now must pre-irrigate my nose/sinuses & eyes with water. I hadn't realized that my painful underarm skin is coming from the pool water until now (reading your webpage, and drawing a connection from a recent pool visit experience, before googling this topic).

I don't want to have to do a full shower before getting in the pool (since it'll render my towel less useful for after-pool drying), but I will apply a lotion or petrolatum jelly before getting in (&/or after).

I also have to do a drop of alcohol in each year now. This is after 30 years of swimming ~2 times per week (from age 15 to age 45). It's sad how so many things are conspiring to try & keep me from the water.

I sure hope I don't face long-term issues from swimming, and that my symptoms don't get worse. It's a great sport, and I'm surprised that I'm succumbing to such issues, given that almost no one else I know (including many swim experts at UT Austin) have heard of such issues.

Please let me know if there's any other issue long-term I should be watching out for; No publishing my email info online, please, but you're welcome to publish my other suggestions. I'd love to help people keep enjoying pools!)

Thanks so much.

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Skin Irritation After Working At A Pool Supply Store

by Mikefj40
(San Carlos, CA)

My son just started working at a local Leslie's Pool Supply Store.

He'd complained about skin irritation from the start but tonight he came home with large welts on his torso, legs and arms.

The poison control center told him to take another shower and quit his job.

Basically, you have an allergy so suck it up...

Thanks for the comment

Sorry to hear about your son. A pool supply store is a good place to start learning about pool chemicals and supplies.

I remember when I first started with my uncle's pool company in Arizona. He had a couple of Chevy work vans that he used for the pool routes. We put sheets of plastic between the cab and the back to try to keep the chlorine smell down.

It took me about 2 weeks before I stopped feeling like I was going to vomit each time I got into the van. It was really bad, but I had to get used to it.

Good call in contacting the poison control center.

It may not have been a true chlorine allergy, but the best thing to do is find another job if in fact he did have a reaction to the chemicals or chemical smell in the store.

Thanks again for stopping by and have a fun and safe swimming season.


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