A new project was just launched by the Cleaner Indoor Air Campaign called, Choose Friendships Over Fragrances, This campaign provides awareness about Environmental Illness, information about those who report these adverse effects to chemicals and fragrances, as well as helpful tools and resources.
Research done in 2004, 2005 and 2009 by Stanley M.Caress and Anne C. Steinemann “… found that nearly 38% of Americans report adverse effects when exposed to some kind of fragranced product” (Steinemann). With approximately 310 million people in America in 2010, that is almost 117 million Americans who report adverse effects to normal, everyday products.
It is suspected that many more may possibly live with these reactions, but do not make the connection between the fragrances and their symptoms. Therefore, it is hard to determine exactly how many more people actually live with Environmental Illnesses.
Various terms are often used to describe Environmental Illnesses, such as Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS), Toxic Injury, Chemical Injury and/or Toxic Encephalopathy. Many living with such conditions as Allergies, Asthma and COPD often react to chemicals and fragrances as well. Reported severity can range from mild and aggravating to severe and debilitating, with symptoms varying from coughing to closing of the throat to migraines and memory loss.
As we can imagine, people living with these conditions often experience limited access into public places, issues at work and inability to attend functions with friends and family. Regrettably, these barriers can lead to loneliness, isolation and feeling abandoned when loved ones choose not forgo the fragrances that cause these problems.
Therefore, if our loved one is telling us they are getting debilitating migraines, dizziness or fatigue from our laundry detergent, maybe we should consider simply switching it out so that they may remain a part of our lives.
Check out our latest project, Choose Friendships Over Fragrances.
■ Learn more about those living with adverse effects to chemicals and fragrances.
■ Find out how to keep these loved ones a part of our lives!
■ Get a list of Readers’ Favorite Fragrance-Free Products.
■ Share our posters!