Multiple Chemical Sensitivities info by Debra Lynn Dadd How I recovered from Multiple Chemical Sensitivities

Multiple Chemical Sensitivities --
I Recovered, So Can You

Many people over the years have asked me how I recovered* from multiple chemical sensitivities. Indeed, many medical professionals say that it is impossible. But I am completely recovered and I believe that most people with multiple chemical sensitivities can recover, too.

Eliminate Toxic Chemicals From Your Home

home safe homeMy books on identifying and removing toxic chemicals from your home have been "bibles" for thousands of people with multiple chemical sensitivities over the last two decades.

The new edition of Home Safe Home is finally here--fully updated with information on new toxic dangers as well as more safe solutions.

Learn about the health effects and safe alternatives for more than 100 common household products, and make your home safe for yourself and your loved ones.

Read more about the new Home Safe Home...
Order now from

The Recommended Reading for Home Safe Home is now online in Debras's Bookstore. The Toxics page contains many titles that will help you identify and understand a wide range of toxic chemicals. I've also posted pages with books on Air, Bodycare, Building, Cleaning, Food, Garden, Health, Pest Control, Pets, and Water, and more are coming soon.


Read about my recovery

Here is the story of my illness and what I did to recover. I believe this same program will work for anyone with this condition.

I've divided this into three parts.

If you are chemically sensitive, YOU CAN RECOVER. If you are not yet chemically sensitive, IT CAN BE PREVENTED.

If you have recovered from multiple chemical sensitivities, I'd like to post your success here too. Please send me an with your story (limit 1000 words) and a photo.


Building and Remodeling for MCS

This is an article I wrote for Ecological Home Ideas magazine, which outlines the basics for building and remodeling if you have MCS, based on my own personal experience.

Building and Remodeling With MCS


At Home With Debra...How I Really Live

In response to popular demand for more information on my own personal choices, I started a section on my Debra's List website called At Home With Debra...How I Really Live.

It is just what it's title describes. I take you inside my home and tell you how I live, what products I use, why I chose them and show you how I deal with all the little dilemmas of daily life we are all faced with when making decisions that favor health and the environment.

I post a new story every two weeks, and announce the posting in my free newsletter Health, Home & Habitat.

Shop Debra's List for Nontoxic Products

The biggest challenge facing most people with multiple chemical sensitivities is finding nontoxic products. I'm happy to report that there are now more safe products than ever, and you can find them on Debra's List.

While Debra's List contains products that are better for both health and the environment, I've specifically marked the websites that are familiar with and cater to those with chemical sensitivities with a special icon.

You'll find many products in these catagories: General Household, Air (Indoor), Art Supplies , Babies & Kids, Body Care, Building, Cleaning , Energy, Flowers, Food, Garden, Interior Decorating, Office, Pest Control, Pets, Textiles, Water, and more.

In addition, there are links to websites that can help you find out the toxic ingredients that are in specific products and their health effects.


Sign up for my free newsletters

Every two weeks I send out my Health, Home & Habitat e-newsletter, which has updates on toxic products as well as new additions to Debra's List.

If you have trouble tolerating refined white sugar, but still want to eat something sweet, subscribe to my weekly e-newletter with recipes using natural sweeteners. Take a look at some of the recipes.



The entire contents of this section are based upon the opinions and personal experience of Debra Lynn Dadd and her clients, and are intended solely to be a sharing of information. They are not intended as medical advice or to replace the services of a qualified health care professional. You are encouraged make your own decisions as to whether anything in this section may be useful to your own particular situation. Please determine your treatment for MCS based upon your own research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional.


* "Recovery" has several definitions. I'm referring to "restoration or return to health from sickness" (definition #3 in The American College Dictionary, 1956). I have not only regained the ability to have the life I choose, but my life today is even better than it was prior to the challenge of MCS. I am happy, productive, married, able to do anything that I choose to do, and tolerate all environments I need and want to be in. I can drive my car, shop, travel, eat in restaurants, go out with friends, and anything else that I want to do without having symptoms.

I remember clearly the moment I decided I had recovered. It was in 1987. After seven years of struggling with MCS, I determined I was well enough to attempt a trip to Europe. After a month of flying on airplanes, riding in taxis, sleeping in hotel rooms, and eating in restaurants, I had no symptoms. I had proven to myself that I could live without the extreme measures to avoid chemicals I had been taking. My immune system had recovered enough that I could go out into the world and be exposed to the normal amount of chemicals that exist in modern life.

Though I continue live in a nontoxic home, I do so because I enjoy it, and with the motivation of wanting to sustain the health of my body and all life on Earth. Why expose myself and others to substances that are inherently antagonistic to life, when I can surround myself with materials that contribute to sustaining life? I'm still careful about extraordinary exposures to toxic chemicals (like being directly sprayed with a pesticide), but that kind of exposure is harmful to even otherwise "healthy" people.

Now that I am recovered, I no longer make every decision around avoiding all toxic exposures, as I did when I had MCS. I no longer am concerned that everything I might do could result in a reaction. I no longer limit my activities based on possible chemical exposures. I no longer lie disabled in bed, having all my attention on how I am going to get through this misery.

To me, being free of symptoms, being free of the worry about symptoms, having the freedom to do anything I want in my life, having enough health to have a life is recovery from the limitations imposed by MCS. And so I consider myself "recovered."

Hailed as "The Queen of Green" by the New York Times, Debra Lynn Dadd has been a pioneering consumer advocate since 1982, specializing in products and lifestyle choices that are safer for human health and the environment. She is the author of Home Safe Home.


American Academy of Environmental Medicine
Find a medical doctor here who is certified to treat MCS (choose the "referrable physicians" button at the top of the page).

Resources for the Chemically Injured
A comprehensive list of links including agencies and advocate groups, articles, books, bulletin board and chat room, doctors, hospital protocol, instructions for making a 'safe room', labs, lawyers, magazines and newsletters, resources for safe products, and more.

Copyright ©2008 Debra Lynn Dadd - all rights reserved.
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