Treatments that Didn’t Help

Western Medicine, Good Doctors and Bad

There are good doctors and bad doctors. Obviously this is not earth-shattering news but in our experience, a bad doctor can contribute to a decline in your health while a good doctor might not be able to help you get better, but offer opportunities for learning and experimentation that help you move forward in the healing process.

Remember, you don’t need to convince your doctor. The majority of medical professionals do not believe that chemical injury, sensitivities, multiple chemical sensitivities, etc, exist. Some take the information that you give them and discount your experience. Others are more open-minded. We’ve seen both. If you’re not comfortable with your health professional, find a new one. The bottom line is that their job is to help you get well. If they don’t have the tools or knowledge to do it or are unwilling to accept the information you provide, you should move on.

Having said that, one of the largest problems facing western doctors today is the fact that we’re constantly self diagnosing as a society. This is in large part due to the influence of pharmaceutical advertising which figured out how to market products in a broad manner. The phrase “ask your doctor” is in every one. Health care costs are in large part far higher because of people wanting certain medications, specific tests, extra stuff the doctors see no reason to provide. But in large part, they will provide it because if they don’t, someone else will.

My advice to the above is that you’ll need to be your own advocate, especially since chemical injury is not fully understood or accepted by most doctors. You need to be responsible, consistent, and organized to provide doctors that genuinely want to help with every tool possible. It can be hard to do but track all of your doctor visits, symptoms, reactions, anything related to your illness. Providing a consistent narrative each time you visit the doctor, taking an active role in your own health, and doing your part may go a long way to finding a medical partner to help you.

Liver flush (Cost: Free / Time in Treatment: Every other week for 9 months)

You can learn more about it here but the short version is that we don’t know if this contributed positively to my wife’s health. It certainly was a small investment of money and a large investment in time and work (the treatment is a bit intense).

While this might be a good practice for one’s general health, maybe once every six months, it is not the treatment we would recommend for a chemically injured person to rely on exclusively.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber (Cost: $150 per session / Time in Treatment: 10 visits)

After 10 treatments my wife did not experience any improvement. We’ve heard from others that this method can be very effective. Unfortunately, it did nothing to help us.

Learn more about it here.

Supplements (Cost: Highly Variable / Time in Treatment: on and off since 2005)

Chemically injured people may have difficulty absorbing nutrients, also called malabsorbtion. This is commonly seen in patients with Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and can carry over to chemically sensitive people as well. This lack of nutrients or ability to gain nutrients from a normal healthy diet requires the use of supplements.

My wife’s experience with supplements was quite different. She wasn’t able to deal with them well and showed improvement when she finally quit using supplements. We focus on an extremely healthy diet, one that is as organic as possible.

For those that want to try supplements, be careful of the type you use. For example, if you see partially hydrogenated oils in the ingredient list…that’s not good. There’s really no regulation on supplements and some can possibly be harmful.

Intravenous (IV) therapy

One of the doctors she saw tried a form of IV therapy along with supplements she ingested to provide a boost to the system. This didn’t work well for my wife and she actually she felt sicker as a result. Once again, we’ve heard positive stories from others with regard to this treatment but it didn’t work for us.

Learn more about it here.

Acupuncture

We tried this very early on in learning about her illness. It didn’t work.

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