You're welcome Marie, sorry for taking a while to reply again.
A lot of people seem to think MCS is permanent and I feel spreading this message can be very damaging as it takes away hope from people like yourself unnecessarily. My own experience is that it is 100% possible to recover from this horrible illness. As I said above I have been fully recovered for 11 years now and I am certainly not the only one, you will find other recovery stories on this website and many others that discuss multiple chemical sensitivity.
To answer your question directly, the simple answer is very much - YES! I developed MCS in typical fashion, first reacting to one thing (cigarette smoke), then another few (perfume and aftershave / cologne) and then it it quickly escalated to include laundry detergent, fabric softener, household cleaning products, vehicle exhaust and every scented product people wear or use in the home. By roughly 6 months after my initial reaction I was reacting to pretty much everything (in terms of things that give off volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
I had to move out of the family home and live on benefits in a little flat / apartment alone for many years using only plain soap to wash and various non-chemical methods to wash my clothes etc. Despite making my home as chemical-free as possible I still needed to wear a carbon filter face mask from I Can Breathe in my own kitchen and bathroom, including while showering. I was a virtual hermit and when I did occasionally have family or friends visit or venture outside I always had to wear the mask and keep buying fresh filters every month or two.
I believe my recovery was down to addressing hormonal issues as discussed above as well as strictly avoiding all chemical exposure in air, food and water for around 3 years. I also took numerous nutritional supplements and herbs which Martin Pall now recommends as part of his protocol for MCS and related conditions.
It has now been almost 11 years since my last reaction with just a few "wobbles" during the first year. And yes, I now live a 'normal' life as I did before and can do everything anyone else does without reacting to chemicals and suffering the old tell-tale symptoms. I have been around fresh paint on a number of occasions with no problems at all, although I do try to keep exposures to a minimum just because I'm now aware how toxic so many everyday items are, even to 'healthy' people!
I believe you are correct that a virus could play a role. The immune, nervous and endocrine systems are all intimately linked and it is no stretch based on known science to assume a virus could trigger changes in the body that result in the development of MCS. I should say though that my original illness began with a viral infection in 1990, 10 years before I developed MCS. I was diagnosed as having M.E. or chronic fatigue syndrome and I would not say I am fully recovered from this despite now being MCS-free. The body is so complex and so are all of these interconnected illnesses.
There is always hope for recovery and I wish you all the best in finding your path back to a normal life as quickly as possible.
If you are going through hell, keep going - Winston Churchill
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