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Fabrics and Fabric Additives - Which are Most Problematic?

Discussion in 'Hypersensitivity and Intolerance' started by Viking, Nov 13, 2015.

  1. Viking


    I have had a number of reactions to various fabrics in new curtains, new bedding, and new clothing.

    Has anyone seen any trend in what type of fabric is most problematic ( polyester, cotton, other synthetics etc), and what type of dyes or fabric additive are most difficult to tolerate?

    By additives I mean...
    Permanent press.
    Flame retardant.
    Stain resistant.

    Also, any ideas on safe ways to wash fabrics. ie safe soaps, baking soda, etc.

  2. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl But I Look So Good.

    Left Coast
    I don't buy anything that is permanent press or has any treatment. I don't have to worry about flame retardant.

    I forget what soap I use. Biokleen I think. There's plenty of scent free, chemical free things out.
  3. Hutan

    Hutan Senior Member

    New Zealand
    Imported fabrics and clothes are fumigated with some pretty nasty chemicals such as methyl bromide. While the fumigant typically disperses well before you get your purchase home, there are well documented instances of people being poisoned. This applies particularly to people unpacking fumigated goods. There was an example of a woman who was unpacking boxes of clothes and ironing them who was severely affected.

    People unpacking their personal effects after transport from another country should be aware of this, especially when the goods have come from a country where regulations and training on the safe use of fumigants may be weak. Good ventilation when unpacking is important.

    (While my family's ME illness seems to have been precipitated by a viral illness, I do wonder whether the methyl bromide in our personal effects that arrived at around the same time played a part in making us vulnerable. There was a heatwave at the time so we unpacked the boxes in a house with the windows closed. The smell of the sulphides (? from memory) produced by a reaction of the fumigant with the proteins in things like wool was very strong in the house for about a week.)
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2015

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