|12 May 2006 @ 21:01, by hgoodgame|
Before I continue with my 'tales of travel', it seemed a good idea to re-address an old issue, that of my fight with MCS. While many of the long-time members of NCN have already seen this, it may be of interest to new members.
This challenge added another whole layer of complexity to the trip taken.. And as I unfold the tale, it will explain some of what my reactions were caused by.
So. without further ado, here's the old log entry.
19 Sep 2003 @ 12:38, by Heidi Goodgame
Today I'm going to post a little information on what one of my limitations is since not a lot is known about this condition and I feel many people already have it but haven't figured out what the problem is yet. I apologize in advance if some of the information is redundant since I am just copying and pasting a small part of the information I've gathered in the past few months.
MCS - People with Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) are made ill by prolonged (or sometimes even brief) exposure to chemical fumes and smells that an unaffected person would scarcely notice.
Most common offenders are auto exhaust, cosmetic fragrances, formaldehyde and other chemicals emitted from fabrics, carpets, building materials and home furnishings. Deodorizers, cleaning solutions, ink, paint, varnish, pesticides, plastics, copy machines and smoke are but a few of the culprits. MCS results from damage to the detoxification system in the liver that is the body’s major means of eliminating toxins.
Symptoms of MCS usually include mental fogginess, difficulty concentrating, memory lapses, nervous irritability, fatigue, weakness, muscle and joint aches and pains, drowsiness, and depression (crying for no apparent reason). Prevention and treatment rely heavily on avoidance of chemical exposure. When hazards are repeated, damage is cumulative and results in increased discomfort and suffering.
More than 12% of Population Reports Extreme Sensitivity to Low Levels of Common Chemicals
[RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC]
Study Published Today in Environmental Health Perspectives Finds 1.8% of Population Loses Job as Result
Approximately 12.6% of the population suffers from multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), a condition in which they experience reactions from exposure to low concentrations of common chemicals, according to a study published today in the September issue of the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP). Of those reporting such hypersensitivity, 13.5% (or 1.8% of the entire sample) reported losing their jobs because of it. Extrapolated to a U.S. population of 290 million, today's study means as many as 36.5 million Americans are suffering from MCS, and more than 5.2 million may lose jobs as a result.
MCS is a condition in which individuals have an acute hypersensitivity to the chemicals in everyday substances, including household cleaning agents, pesticides, fresh paint, new carpeting, building materials, newsprint, perfume, and numerous other petrochemical-based products. Individuals with MCS may experience headaches, burning eyes, asthma symptoms, stomach distress/nausea, dizziness, loss of mental concentration, and muscle pain. Some individuals also suffer fever or even loss of consciousness.
Participants in today's study, all residents of metropolitan Atlanta, were surveyed at random. Those who reported MCS were later interviewed in more detail to understand how the syndrome affects their daily lives.
"MCS can produce a wide range of symptoms, and individuals with hypersensitivity can encounter great difficulty functioning in normal working and living environments," the study authors write.
MCS is often triggered, or initiated, by an acute one-time exposure to a specific toxic agent, or chronic exposure to one or more toxic substances, even at low levels. After initiation, a wider range of substances can cause subsequent reactions.
A second study in the same issue of EHP discusses how MCS patients responded to various treatments. Patients responded best to having a relatively chemical-free living space, avoiding chemical exposures, and prayer. Certain treatments, including use of common antidepressants, were rated more likely to harm than help.
Commenting on the study, Dr. Jim Burkhart, science editor for EHP, says, "There are clearly large numbers of people suffering from MCS. At one point, people theorized that this condition might have a psychological basis, but this study also indicates that very few patients had any mental illness prior to MCS. Unfortunately, over 37% reported emotional problems after their physical symptoms emerged. This is a significant public health issue."
If you want to know more, feel free to contact me. There are so many common diseases that are possibly caused by chemical sensitivity, like fibromyalgia, arthritis, multiple sclerosis to name a few. Here is a link to one site that has a lot of information.