About others and read this…
Imagine each day you wake, you live with the possibility of feeling ill. Your throat gets scratchy, your ears plug, your sinus’s have painful pressure and your eyes water. Imagine everyday feeling like you have a cold…that will never go away. Not enough? Take your right hand and with your index finger and thumb, pinch them together over your nose and hold. It’s at this point you begin to breath through your mouth. Now, with your left hand, place your flat palm over your mouth and hold tight. Imagine the weight of a 30lb child standing on your chest in the center between your nipples. Can you feel the weight pressing? Now wait until you have to breath…until you’re actually scared…and then… don’t let go. Not enough. Dig a hole… in the ground…and place yourself in it. Let a friend cover you over with fresh, heavy earth, until there’s no light and no air. Get the picture?
Asthma facts and Statistics
Every day in America Alone:
- Every day in America Alone:
40,000 people miss school or work due to asthma.
- 30,000 people have an asthma attack.
- 5,000 people visit the emergency room due to asthma.
- 1,000 people are admitted to the hospital due to asthma.
- 11 people die from asthma.
An estimated 20 million Americans suffer from asthma (1 in 15 Americans), and 50% of asthma cases are “allergic-asthma.” The prevalence of asthma has been increasing since the early 1980s across all age, sex and racial groups.
Multiple Chemical Sensitivity
Chemical-based products are all around: in the clothes we wear, in the food we eat and in the air we breathe. It is not possible to escape exposure. Many people have become sensitized to the chemicals around them. It is estimated that as much as 15% of the population has become sensitized to common household and commercial products. For some people the sensitization is not too serious a problem. They may have what appears to be a minor allergy to one or more chemicals. Other people are much more seriously affected. Such people have a condition known as Multiple Chemical Sensitivity or MCS.
Symptoms of MCS
• asthma or other breathing problems • autoimmune disorders • behavioral problems • bloating or other intestinal problems • cardiovascular irregularities • chronic exhaustion • disorientation or becoming “lost” • dizziness • dystonia (paralysis) • eye, nose and throat problems • fatigue and depression • flu-like symptoms • food allergies and intolerances • genitourinary problems • headaches • increased sensitivity to odors • inflammation • irritability • learning disabilities • mental confusion • movement disorders • muscle weakness and joint pains • numbness and tingling in limbs • persistent infections, especially yeast • persistent skin rashes and sores • seizure disorders • short or long term memory loss • visual disturbance
MCS may result from a single massive exposure to one or more toxic substance or repeated exposures to low doses. Some people become chemical-sensitive following a toxic chemical spill at work or in their community, or after exposure to pesticides. Or, individuals may develop this condition from spending time in a poorly ventilated building, where they breathe a combination of chemicals. MCS may be brought on by a wide array of chemicals found at home, at work, in hospitals, in parks, and at school.
Now, the next time you splash on that aftershave…or the next time you spray your body with your favorite brand of perfume…to go to work, a restaurant, a club, a sporting event, a play or concert… think about this…
Did you know that perfume is made of toxic chemicals that can injure your health? Many of the chemicals in perfume are the same chemicals in cigarette smoke, and yet there is no regulation of the fragrance industry. Many people are “bothered” by perfumes – developing headaches, sinus problems, and even asthma from exposures. Many have gotten sick or even disabled from wearing (or being exposed to) fragrances and using other scented products. And fragrances are now used in almost every cleaning, laundry, and personal-care product on the market! These chemicals go directly into the bloodstream when applied to our skin and are also absorbed into the skin from our clothing. We also inhale the chemical fumes, which then go straight to our brains where they can do major harm. Many even have a “narcotic” effect, which is why some people seem “addicted” to their perfumes.
The problem with scented products is not so much the smell itself as the chemicals that produce the smell. Nearly all scented products currently on the market are made largely or entirely of synthetic chemicals, usually derived from petroleum or coal tar. Nearly one-third of the chemical additives used in perfumes and other scented products are known to be toxic, and it’s not safe to assume that the other chemicals are safe just because they aren’t yet known to be toxic. (Keep in mind that most of the chemicals used in this country, including 90% of the pesticides, have never been tested.) And just one perfume can contain more than 500 chemicals. Expensive products are just as likely as cheap ones to contain synthetic chemicals. And words like “hypoallergenic,” “natural scent,” “floral,” and the names of various flowers don’t mean that you can trust the product under the label–they just mean that the manufacturer wants you to think that the product is safe. Even “unscented” may actually mean that a masking fragrance has been added to the product to disguise the smell of certain ingredients.
The only safe assumption about scented products is that they contain numerous toxic chemicals which constantly vaporize into the air and attach themselves to the hair, clothing, and surroundings of anyone who wears them. These chemicals are skin irritants, suffocants, eye and respiratory tract irritants, and neurotoxins. That’s why being around someone who’s wearing a scented product (or who’s wearing clothes that have picked up smells from past use of scented products) can cause an chemically sensitive person to develop obvious allergy symptoms (sneezing, coughing, watery eyes), to have an asthma attack, to develop a headache, to become dizzy or nauseous, to have trouble focusing or thinking or remembering, to experience sudden mood changes, to develop muscle cramps or spinal subluxations, or even to have a seizure or lose consciousness.
And that’s why wearing scented products isn’t just a personal choice. It’s a choice to impact the air space of others–and in ways you may not be able to predict or control. And that’s why “I’m just wearing a little!” or “It’s not perfume, it’s just my soap” are irrelevant responses. The chemicals don’t care. They don’t care how much you’re wearing or in what form you’re wearing it–they’re going to vaporize into the air around you and do their chemical thing, even if you weren’t planning to harm someone.
I don’t own these statistics and words. They belong to these wise and caring people and Foundations:
Thanks go to Roberta Rigsby, the World Asthma Foundation, the Asthma Foundation and the Chemical Sensitivity Foundation for all this great info and for trying to make the world a safe place for everyone.