Fact Check: Pineal Gland NOT Calcified By Chlorine In Swimming Pools

Fact Check

  • by: Uliana Malashenko
Fact Check: Pineal Gland NOT Calcified By Chlorine In Swimming Pools Unsupported

Does the use of chlorine in swimming pools calcify the pineal gland or contribute to calcification? No, that's not true: Lead Stories found no credible peer-reviewed studies supporting the claim, and a doctor specializing in neurology confirmed to Lead Stories that such causation is not known to the medical community.

The story appeared in a post on Instagram on May 21, 2023. The caption said:

Stop Going In Pools. Let me explain. #health#pool#diet

The male voice-over in the attached video continued:

... the worst thing is that chlorine pools can calcify the pineal gland, which is the part of our body that helps us be responsible of making critical thinking skills.

This is what it looked like on Instagram at the time of writing:

Screen Shot 2023-06-27 at 4.09.20 PM.png

(Source: Instagram screenshot taken on Tue Jun 27 20:09:20 2023 UTC)

The video contained a gallery of generic still images of pools, people and objects and did not cite any studies supporting the claim. The clip ended with an advertisement for a book that claimed to heal "all diseases," promoting questionable herb-based treatments of "Dr. Sebi," a person without formal medical training who died in 2016 and before that had been barred from practicing medicine by state authorities. Lead Stories debunked multiple claims citing his name posthumously.

In some cases, accounts spreading those false or unsupported statements pursued a self-serving commercial goal to sell or advertise unproven "natural remedies" through social media platforms, including the user who posted the claim about swimming pools.

The pineal gland is responsible for the production of melatonin, also known as a "sleep hormone." The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) model below shows the gland's location:

Screen Shot 2023-06-27 at 4.43.07 PM.png\

(Source: CDC screenshot taken on Tue Jun 27 20:43:07 2023 UTC)

Calcification is a process of calcium being deposited that may affect the gland's functions, thus interfering with a person's sleep and metabolism. It can be seen on MRI or CT scans. Scientists tend to agree that calcification occurs more often in aging people and animals, but that is not always the case. Moreover, it appears there is still no solid consensus on its exact causes or on the probability and methods of its reversal.

Chlorine found in swimming pools is used as a disinfectant. According to the CDC, it is important to add it in recommended proportions to maximize the protective effects and avoid such issues as eye or skin irritation, but pineal calcification is not listed among the known side effects of this kind of water treatment.

Lead Stories searched for and could find no peer-reviewed scientific research supporting the idea that chlorine pools can calcify or contribute to the calcification of the pineal gland.

Lead Stories explored several avenues, contacting expert sources with different subject-matter expertise in the medical field.

A June 27, 2023, email from a representative of the Endocrine Society said:

I do not see any research on the calcification of the pineal gland in our journals.

Lead Stories reached out to Dr. Christopher C. Giza, a professor of pediatric neurology and neurosurgery at the David Geffen School of Medicine and Mattel Children's Hospital and director of the UCLA Steve Tisch BrainSPORT program. He told us via email on June 27, 2023:

I've never heard of such a thing (swimming pool chlorine causing pineal calcification.)

He continued:

My understanding is the cause of pineal gland calcification isn't precisely known. It is generally treated as an incidental finding.

The pineal gland has been the subject of several false claims in recent years. A significant portion of previously debunked variations circulating on the web at least since 2012 blamed fluoride for the gland's calcification. Additionally, Lead Stories found no support for the claim that hydroxychloroquine decalcifies the pineal gland.

Want to inform others about the accuracy of this story?

See who is sharing it (it might even be your friends...) and leave the link in the comments.:

  Uliana Malashenko

Uliana Malashenko is a New York-based freelance writer and fact checker.

Read more about or contact Uliana Malashenko

About Us

International Fact-Checking Organization Meta Third-Party Fact Checker

Lead Stories is a fact checking website that is always looking for the latest false, misleading, deceptive or inaccurate stories, videos or images going viral on the internet.
Spotted something? Let us know!.

Lead Stories is a:


Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required

Please select all the ways you would like to hear from Lead Stories LLC:

You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the link in the footer of our emails. For information about our privacy practices, please visit our website.

We use Mailchimp as our marketing platform. By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp's privacy practices here.

Most Read

Most Recent

Share your opinion