Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) is basically a subset of Environmental Illness (EI), which is caused by living in a toxic world. The chemicals that were synthesized after World War II—including, pesticides, synthetic fragrances, cleaning products, detergents, etc.—are mostly "petrochemicals" (petroleum based) and are quite toxic to humans. There have been virtually no studies done on the majority of these chemicals to see how they affect humans. The industry just placed the chemicals in the environment with the assumption that they are "safe till proven toxic" instead of the other way around! One of the biggest offenders is PERFUME and other scented products. Did you know that many of the ingredients in your perfume are the exact same ingredients found in GASOLINE??!! I didn't either! The scary thing is that the perfume industry is NOT REGULATED at all—they can put any number of chemicals in fragrance without revealing what those chemicals are or how they affect humans. We humans are all participating in a giant "lab experiment" against our knowledge and against our will, and it's making some of us VERY sick.
Those of us who are becoming chronically ill from these chemicals are similar to the "canaries in the coal mine." Coal miners would take a canary into the mines with them to warn them when the air became toxic. They knew that when the canary stopped singing or died, it was time to get out before it affected them as well. We "human canaries" are here to warn the rest of you that, unless you start making changes and avoid as many toxic chemicals as possible, you too may become very sick. Nontoxic living is actually much "simpler" and cheaper!
Don't be fooled, these chemicals are affecting ALL of us in some way or another. Think about the last time you got a headache for no apparent reason. Could it be possible that someone had recently sprayed perfume or pesticides near you without you knowing it? Had you recently used scented laundry detergent or bleach to clean with? Do you get headaches or feel nauseous from being around people wearing perfume or cologne? Do you feel you need to hold your breath when you go down the detergent aisle at the grocery store? All these things are your body's way of telling you something is wrong with the air you're breathing.
It's like playing "Russian Roulette"—you never know how long your immune system can hold out before breaking down. Some people may never reach the point of "chronic illness" that I did, but most people are being affected—possibly without even realizing it. Cancer has increased dramatically since World War II (after all the chemicals came out). Attention Deficit Disorder is on the rise (more and more of our children are being put on toxic, brain-altering drugs like Ritalin when simply cleaning up their environment could solve their problems). Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Alzheimer's Disease, Allergies, Asthma, Lupus, Fibromyalgia, and Multiple Sclerosis are also increasing. All these illnesses could very well have a chemical connection to their cause or—at the very least—these patients would benefit from using less-toxic products. Pretty much any "immune system" disorder can be helped by a cleaner environment and by using safer products.
Many may not realize that the products we use on our skin are absorbed directly into the bloodstream. This is how nitroglycerine, nicotine, and hormone patches work. The chemicals we breathe—such as perfumes, formaldehyde, pesticides, etc.—all go straight to our brains and can cause low-level to severe damage—similar to how someone can snort cocaine or glue to get a "high." Start reading labels. Check for petrochemicals, formaldehyde, and fragrance, and avoid them as much as possible! A clue that an ingredient may be a petrochemical is the "prop" prefix. A clue that an ingredient releases formaldehyde is "Quaternium". Be careful about products labeled "fragrance free" or "unscented". Don't trust them! Read the label and be sure they don't list "fragrance" or "masking fragrance". Don't put anything on your skin you'd be afraid to eat, because the end result is the same!
Before I got sick, I had no clue that I was slowly being "poisoned" by products that I assumed were safe since they were on the market! If this could happen to me—YOU COULD BE NEXT. I encourage you to read through my story and the rest of the information pages listed here to learn how to protect yourself and your family.
Tweety's little "gilded cage" may protect him from the "old putty tat"—but unfortunately, it won't protect him from getting sick from toxic chemicals in the air! MCS can strike anyone, anywhere, at anytime. Let's make a change NOW—BEFORE the canary stops singing…
Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Information Pages:
Jacki's Story – from "Chronic Fatigue Syndrome" diagnosis to "Multiple Chemical Sensitivity" diagnosis and improvement at last!
Health Risks of Fabric Softeners – compiled by Julia Kendall
Let's Stop Poisoning Our Children! – by Richard M. Barry
The Case for Neutralizing (Optimal Dose) Immunotherapy – by Joseph B. Miller, M.D.
The Maximum Intradermally Tolerated Dose (MITD) Method of Food Allergy Testing and Immunotherapy: New Concepts – by Joseph B. Miller, M.D.
One Reason for the Allergy Explosion and the Increase in Asthma – by Dr. Albert Robbins, Jacki's Environmental Physician, in response to Governor Bush's Proclamation declaring May 7–13, 2000 "Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Awareness Week" in the State of Florida
Neighborhood Health Notice – A wonderful pamphlet from "Breath of Fresh Air" that explains to your neighbors about the health problems associated with fabric softeners and scented detergents!
Please… Protect Yourselves From Household Toxics – by Debra Lynn Dadd
Julia Kendall Memorial Page – Julia compiled much of the information presented on this site to educate others about the toxicity of perfumes, fabric softeners, etc. She gave much to the MCS community and is greatly missed…
If you would like to locate an Environmental Medicine Specialist in your area, you can do so by contacting the American Academy of Environmental Medicine
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