Synthetic chemicals are found throughout the environment, but especially in home janitorial supplies. To rid the house of unnecessary air pollutants, start by looking under the sink. One can usually find there an accumulation of chemical products of all kinds: paints, solvents, laundry and dishwashing detergents, waxes and polishes, insect sprays, turpentine, shoe polish, and so forth. Whatever is not absolutely necessary should be dispensed with. Essential items, such as detergents, should be transferred to glass bottles with tight-fitting caps. One should save bottles for such a purpose. All questionable items should be stored outside, in places such as a garage or storeroom.
The same rule applies, naturally, to any other area in which toxic products accumulate. Conduct a careful house search, cleaning out drawers, broom closets, hobby areas, and medicine chests. It is amazing how much dangerous junk piles up in a house over the years, silently polluting the environment. One should be careful, however, not to allow any of these items to spill as they are being disposed of, or this may precipitate an acute attack of symptoms in susceptible people.
The human nose is an extraordinary instrument. Ecology patients tend to be either acutely sensitive to smells, or, conversely, lacking in the sense of smell altogether (in advanced cases). If you have a good-to-excellent sense of smell, you can identify noxious smells in the house by going out for a brisk walk in an area with fairly clean air and then returning to your house to perform a quick “sniff” test. If something has an offensive odor, get rid of it. Do not wait a day, or even a minute, since the nose will quickly adapt to the ill-smelling item. After being exposed for a short while, one can no longer fully smell the offending odor. Many patients report a cleaner feeling in the air after they have rid their homes of these hidden pollutants.
Several engineers and otherwise qualified experts now make “house calls” to inspect the homes of patients for chemical contaminants. They bring not only their expertise, but exceptional ability in “sniffing out” danger spots for patients, based on their own chemical-susceptibility problems. (The organizations listed in Appendix C can provide names of such experts.)