Saturday, October 10, 2009

Me so sensitive

I seem to have developed an unusual sensitivity to something they use in laundry detergent.

I tried using fabric softener a while back (just to see what the deal was since I've never used it before), and I had to give it up because the stuff irritated my nose and throat so much - not the scent itself, but definitely some chemical they use in it.

And now it's started happening with laundry detergent. Or some laundry detergent at least. I think I mentioned that I bought a bag last week that gave me the same symptoms, to the extent that I had to remove the (unopened) bag from the house and then had to go downstairs and put it in another plastic bag because even from the garage it was strong enough to bother me.

But that was a brand I'd never bought before, and I gave it to the cleaning lady at work and picked up a bag of the kind I've used plenty of times before. I also needed disinfectant, and got a bag of that - again, the same kind we've had on hand right along.

And once again, by the time we got home, one of the two was causing that same burning feeling in my nose and throat. Up close, both cleaning products smell like what I'm used to and don't bother me, but somehow the room was just inundated with the scent that irritates me. It doesn't make sense.

I put the detergent into a plastic container with a lid and threw out the bag it came in, in case it had had a different brand spilled on it. I took the box upstairs and the bothersome smell stayed downstairs. I double-bagged the unopened packet of disinfectant and put it in Bob's laundry room, and still the smell in the kitchen didn't go away.

I can't figure it out. The only other things we brought home in that bag were some toilet paper (unscented) and a newspaper. Now we've thrown away the grocery bag the stuff was brought home in, and wiped down the table. I hope that will do the trick, but I really don't get what's wrong. I did laundry with the new detergent this evening and had no problem.

Not sure what the deal is, but tomorrow I'm cleaning my bathroom with the disinfectant, so assuming there's no problem there, that'll rule out both of the actual products.

Anyone else have experience with this sort of thing? Suggestions?


Dick October 11, 2009 5:26 AM  

Some years ago Lisa put us onto using unscented laundry detergent and fabric softener sheets, and we've been doing it ever since.

Tide and Arm and Hammer both have that kind and I think Cheer does or did. Of course they may not be available there, but you'd think that SOME locally available brand would have a scent-free/dye-free product. Did you try PriceSmart?

Of course it's weird that something you've used all along would suddenly start to cause problems. I've heard that with any kind of allergies what happens is that a combination of things sometimes combines to cause the reaction, and an even slight increase in any one component can tip it over the edge.

Good luck!

Anonymous October 11, 2009 5:42 AM  

Erm, baby on the way maybe?

Or some other sort of hormonal fluctuation or
something going on in the nose.


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