I’ve been using a filtered water showerhead for a couple of years now for health reasons. Recently I moved and before I could install another, I had to shower with tap water. I was reminded powerfully of why I originally filter water for showers. I wanted to share this information with you. It’s something every family should be doing if you are concerned with good health. I’ll give more specifics on what I use later, but suffice it to say it isn’t an expensive or difficult process to do.
A shower that sprays tap water without a filter releases water that has been mixed with chlorine (unless your water comes from a well), as well as other chemicals. Chlorine is used in tap water for many reasons intended to be beneficial to us. But that doesn’t necessarily equate to good news.
Shower heads are breeding grounds for bacteria
Many people are unaware of the fact that there are a lot of bacteria lurking in shower heads.. University of Colorado’s biology Professor Norman Pace confirms this is what happens every time we shower without a filter installed. He did a research study to prove this claim (see sources at end of this post).
Samples from different shower heads were collected from every part of the country. They were analyzed to see if there was an active buildup of bacteria inside the shower head. The results showed 60% of the shower head sampled, contained large quantities of bacteria and other microorganisms present. These bacteria were types that can cause various kinds of illness, some serious conditions.
Cosmetic Reasons to filter water for showers
The potential hazard chlorine has on your hair and skin is enough reason to take action. Chlorine leaves deposits on the skin and hair. Chlorine residue left on our bodies will alter the normal composition of useful bacteria.
The effects of chlorine residue will reduce the moisture in the skin, which leads to irritation and dryness. Your skin will look older and more wrinkled. A shower filter helps to prevent this from happening. It might be the best anti-aging product you could get!
Chlorine residue strips natural oils and moisture that keep hair healthy and shiny. This will leave hair dry and brittle. It also causes irritation of the scalp, which can become itchy, flaking and overly dry. Some folks spend huge amounts on expensive hair and scalp care products to battle these problems. Many of these issues would be resolved by simply installing a filtered water shower head.
Reports from various studies (noted at end of post) have shown the effects of chlorine on skin resembles what happens to skin when it has been overly exposed to sunlight. Chlorine triggers the production of free radicals. This can lead to cell damage and the onset on cancerous growths.
Most people can feel the difference from their very first shower.
Should I filter water for showers?
Having a hot shower will open up the pores of your skin. This is a perfect entry through which chlorine will find its way into your system. The heat of the shower also causes chlorine to be released as a gas form, which we then inhale. Our bodies get more exposure to chlorine from inhaling the vapors while showering, than by drinking regular tap water. The use of filtered water shower heads will help protect against this.
Research reports indicate that traces of chloroform were found in the lungs of participants in a research study who had just showered. The only possible means through which the chlorine found its way into the lungs was through inhalation.
We are also exposed to other dangerous chemicals while showering. There are other unidentified chemical compounds that can get into the body through inhalation or through open pores in the skin. When this happens, these chemical elements find their way into the blood stream.
A report presented in 1992 by the American Journal of Public Health indicates that there is a higher chance that people who drink chlorinated water will become more prone to various types of cancer.
You might want to do some research on ‘structured water’ for your drinking water. Recently I’ve purchased this portable structured water unit that I use for all my cooking and drinking water needs. I love that I can take it to work as well, and have clean drinking water there too. No filters to change ever, and the unit can be run through the dishwasher.
A recent EPA report also indicates that a large number of homes in America will test a positive result, when air in their home is tested for traces of chlorine and chloroform. The report identifies the source as being the water from the shower. The vapors spread to the rest of the home. This greatly reduces the indoor air quality.
Other reasons to filter water for showers
Some side effects of chlorine include fatigue, depression, a compromised immune system and more. A shower filter is designed to help reduce your exposure to chlorine.
The Center for Disease Control advocates the frequency of hot showers with chlorinated tap water be avoided. Several studies have found links between chlorine and cancer.
Two separate studies confirmed that chlorine, as well as the by-product chloramine (which is chlorine mixed with ammonia) can cause cancer. (see resources at the end of post)
Do we really need to filter water for showers?
If you do not have a confirmed report from your local water company that chlorine or other harmful compounds like ammonia are not used for water treatment, then you really should get a shower filter. This is a great way to counter act the effects of chlorine exposure.
There are many brands of shower filters on the market today. A good shower filter should have carbon, vitamin C, or a kinetic degradation filtration system.
The common features of shower filters include the use of vitamin C filters, a good two stage filter system installed, or the use of carbon filters. High quality carbon is effective and very good. The one I personally use is the Culligan shower filter. It is very effective and affordable. It ‘s super easy to install (even I installed this by myself). You should put one on every shower in your home. The replacement filter should be replaced every 6 months. It’s cheap and easy to do.
Vitamin C filters – These models can remove as much as 99% of chlorine compounds from a water sample. The vitamin c filters are also effective against chloramines. They need to be replaced often because the water quickly drains away the ascorbic acid.
The carbon shower filters – The main component- activated charcoal is not an expensive product to get. The downside for this type of filtration, is that its effectiveness can be compromised by heat.
KDF filters– These work using principles of chemistry. They are fitted with copper and zinc. The two metals generate a small charge. This charge is harmless to humans but it has a big effect on chemicals that pass through. The charge frees the molecules of the chorine, which forms a harmless bond with other compounds like calcium. The resulting electrolyte is completely harmless to our families. A drawback to this type, is if you have low water pressure.
Two stage filters– these filters have a dual purpose. They remove chlorine from water and helps to balance the water ph level. It works in two stages.
Here is one to filter water for your bathtubs.
Harmful chemical compounds and bacteria present in the water are removed by using a water filter shower head. The benefits of using shower filters are many.
Even though shower filters cannot be guaranteed to be 100% effective (they don’t exist), they will considerably reduce the amount of chlorine and other harmful bacteria and substances found in your water.
You might also enjoy my posts – Dry Skin Brushing The Health and Beauty Benefits, Get Your Chrome Bathroom Fixtures Clean and Shining and Shine and Polish the Dirtiest Room in the Home Fast.
Be aware also that these factors also effect children. I have some compromised health issues, so clean water is vital.
Until next time,
This is what I use to filter water for showers. Love it!
(source https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1694065/ ) ,(source https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8213753)
(Source http://www.michigan.gov/documents/Chlorine_factsheet_82357_7.pdf) by The Department of Community Health)