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Prevalence of fragrance sensitivity in the American population – Source: Journal of Environmental Health, Mar 2009

  [ 30 votes ]   [ 1 Comment ]
By Stanley M Caress, PhD, Anne C Steinemann, PhD • • April 2, 2009

This study determined the percentages of individuals who report adverse effects from exposure to fragranced products in the U.S. population and in subpopulations of those with asthma or chemical sensitivity.

Data were collected through telephone interviews from two geographically weighted, random samples of the continental U.S. in two surveys during 2002-2003 and 2005-2006 (1,057 and 1,058 cases, respectively).

Respondents were asked: if they find being next to someone wearing a scented product irritating or appealing; if they have headaches, breathing difficulties, or other problems when exposed to air fresheners or deodorizers; and if they are irritated by the scent from laundry products, fabric softeners, or dryer sheets that are vented outside.

Results aggregated from both surveys found that:

• 30.5% of the general population reported scented products on others irritating,

• 19% reported adverse health effects from air fresheners,

• And 10.9% reported irritation by scented laundry products vented outside.

This study reveals that a considerable percentage of the U.S. population reports adverse health effects or irritation from fragranced products, with higher percentages among those with asthma and chemical sensitivity.

Source: Journal of Environmental Health, Mar 2009;71(7):46-50. PMID: 19326669, by Caress SM, Steinemann AC. University of West Georgia, Carrollton, Georgia, USA. [E-mail:]

Please Discuss This Article:   Post a Comment 

Posted by: Buzybee
Apr 28, 2009
The other day my son and I walked through the detergent isle at the grocery store and half-way through my sons eyes began to tear and nose began sniffling. He said "let's go back mom, I can't stand this". I knew he had perfumed soap and detergent allergy (he gets eczema real bad), so I always bought fragrance free. BUT what I didn't realize is how severe it can get just walking by the products. Amazing! I feel for all of you with such severe allergies and reactions to chemicals.
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