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There are numerous health benefits of swimming, including building endurance, muscle strength and cardiovascular fitness, as well as being great for general well-being. But, swimming may also affect your skin, particularly if you are one of the estimated 31 million Americans who have some form of eczema. Eczema, which is the name for a group of conditions that cause the skin to become inflamed, irritated and itchy, can begin during childhood, adolescence, or adulthood and it can range from mild to severe. There is some research linking pool and ocean water to eczema flares, particularly where there is calcium buildup. On the other hand, chlorinated water may reduce the level of bacteria on your skin, which can be good for eczema. In an article that originally published on Healthline, Summit Health internal medicine physician Dr. Soma Mandal explains how chlorinated pool water or ocean water can affect eczema symptoms, and how people with eczema can help protect their skin.

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