Sunday, 25 May 2014

Perfume Sensitivity

I am sensitive to perfume, yes, yet another chapter in my myriad of issues.

The perfume doesn't have to be strong, I don't even have to be able to smell it my nervous system will be reacting like Usain Bolt reacting to a starting pistol.
Like some of the issues caused by my depression, I struggle to get people to understand the problem of perfume sensitivity, they all seem to think that if I am not in the room when they spray, then I can't possibly be affected. Yes, spraying aerosols make me cough, but they don't necessarily cause any further reaction, unless it is Lynx which I think could possibly be used as a paint stripper and seems to affect everyone except the wearer.

I have blacked out because of the pain a perfume caused me, it was only for a second, no more than a couple, but long enough to come back to a sea of concerned faces, one of which was the perfume wearer which didn't help.  After this, despite the staff entrance being out of sight of the office, I knew exactly when the she had arrived thanks to a stabbing pain in my head, this would be followed by a waft of perfume and later still, a cherry hello as the wearer arrived at her desk.  I had started to build up a tolerance by the time she stopped wearing it.

I went on holiday with a friend one year who wanted to buy some aftershave for his son, he knew about my sensitivity so sent me to look at the alcohol at the other end of the shop, he promised me that he wouldn't spray anything.  When he reappeared, not having bought anything, I had stabbing pains immediately, and apparently my eyes sunk back into my head, my under eyes turned black and he was horrified.  He thought that as I hadn't seen him spray the aftershave, and he had then washed his hands I wouldn't know.

What he didn't realise was that he had washed off the carrier, but not the fragrance.

Our office cleaner is a lovely women, but her perfume sends me reeling, worse still, she is an Avon lady and leaves her books in the office so we can place orders.  There are perfume swatches in them that you can rub to release the fragrance, and again, people think that because they are not spraying anything than I cannot be affected.  But rubbing the page sends the perfume into the air and I react.

I have to be careful with shampoo and shower gel, I have used Head & Shoulders for as long as I can remember as it does not affect me, I have lost track of how many other brands I have bought and had to throw away after one use.

It is yet another thing which is not fun, but which has to be dealt with on a daily basis.

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