Do you really need a water filter for shower heads in your home? Is it just some kind of advertising myth perpetuated by companies that make them? That’s what I wondered. Here’s what I learned.
I used to think that water filters for shower heads were strictly a cosmetic item. Sure, chlorine dries out your skin and hair, but I didn’t really think too much about it. Until the itching started, that is.
I had heard of people who were allergic to chlorine, but I didn’t know that you could develop allergies over time, just by constant exposure. I knew that we had pretty high levels of chlorine, in our home. We already had a system for the kitchen, but I wasn’t convinced of the necessity for our showerheads, even after the itching started.
I finally started looking for a good water filter for shower and bath purposes after I read some of the latest research reports. I had been reading for years about how THMs, which are released when chlorine is used for disinfection, increased a person’s risk of bladder and colorectal cancer.
The risk increases as consumption increases, because the chemical causes “breakage” in DNA strands that predispose the cells to cancerous growths. I had thought that the only risk was from consumption. So, I made sure that our kitchen purifier removed chlorine, as well as THMs. You might be surprised to learn that a lot of kitchen purifiers do not remove them.
The latest research showed that the risk from showering was even greater than the risk from consumption. It’s even greater than swimming regularly in a chlorinated pool. The report was published in 2007 and that’s when I began to look earnestly at water filters for shower heads in my home.
Just as I had learned when looking for kitchen purifiers that remove THMs, I learned that most water filters for shower heads only remove chlorine. Many only reduce chlorine levels by about 50%. That seems less than adequate to me.
But, I was determined to find a showering system that would remove THMs. The first one that I found was the Wellness water filter for shower heads. The cost seemed kind of high at $249, but it did remove THMs and even VOCs. I had a hard time finding a kitchen system that removed VOCs, so I was pretty impressed.
I went to the website to read about the technology that the company used. I had a little bit of knowledge about what I needed, because of my search for a drinking-water system.
To remove THMs and VOCs, you need a process called adsorption. A carbon block design can do the trick. That step also removes chlorine and other chemicals. In order to remove lead and copper, which I wanted to do, because I felt it was the safest choice, an ion exchange step is necessary.
The Wellness system did all of that, but I couldn’t see any reason to pay that much for a water filter for shower or bath, when I could get the same protection for less. I learned that high price doesn’t always equal better quality.