Understanding Chemical Allergen Names in Relation to Cross-Reactivity

You walk into your allergist’s office with a back covered in tape and pen marks. You walk out with a list of chemical allergens to avoid. For most people, it isn’t that straightforward. To the majority of people who are handed a list of chemicals to avoid, avoiding only the chemicals on that list isn’t […]

What is Homeopathy and How Does It Work?

Homeopathy is medication by extremely dilute quantities of toxic substances. The idea is that an ailment can be effectively treated by a substance that causes that symptom to occur in a healthy individual. In homeopathic theory, the more dilute the substance, the more potent the effect. Some homeopathic remedies (ones considered the most potent) are […]

Homemade Enzyme-Based Pet Stain/Odour Remover

If you have pets, you have pet stains. It might just be where Fluffy threw up, where Spot dragged his bottom across the floor, or Boots may have a favourite inappropriate place to pee. We only have one cat, but he doesn’t always pee where he should, and when the basement bathroom door is closed […]

Eight Natural Alternatives to Fabric Refresher Sprays

Fabric refresher sprays (you know the ones) are full of so many chemicals, including fragrances and preservatives, that you almost forget that they’re also mostly water. These sprays don’t claim to actually clean your fabrics, just to eliminate smells (and add new smells in their place). Nowadays, people are using fabric refreshers, and other products […]

Isn’t *Anything* I Can’t Pronounce Dangerous? (or Critical Thinking About Science)

In short? No. Think about that. First of all, everything on earth either has a chemical name or is made of things that have chemical names. Yes, some have common names as well, but the fact is that everything in our world is made up of chemicals. Have you ever seen the warnings for dihydrogen […]

Allergies to Bandages

I have known I was allergic to the adhesive on some band aids for years. Applying the wrong type of band aid would leave me with dihydritic eczema if applied on my hands, and horrible itchiness and red, bumpy rashes if applied anywhere else. The rash took weeks to go away completely, and my topical […]

Going to Hotels with Chemical Allergies

I’ve said it before, and I’m sure I’ll say it again: Most situations are manageable with proper preparation and planning. That part out of the way, I’ll say that going to stay in hotels feels like a tough one. Not only do they tend not to assign you a specific room until you arrive, but […]

Propylene Glycol Allergy

If you’re not used to reading ingredient labels, a positive patch test to propylene glycol might not mean much to you. If you do read labels, finding our you’re allergic to propylene glycol could send you into a bit of a tailspin. Propylene glycol is everywhere! It’s even in hydrocortisone cream, a common topical steroid […]

The Importance of Dust

After seeing so many heartbreaking stories in Facebook allergy support groups recently, I wanted to choose a topic today that will help as many people as possible as quickly as possible. One of the most important things to consider when trying to stop reactions in their tracks is to consider contamination and allergen exposure routes. […]