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Allergic to everything?
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Allergic to everything?

I seem to be developing allergic rashes to every product I use these days!  It started in August when I developed red, swollen lips and a rash in the corners of my mouth from a certain brand of toothpaste.  I switched toothpastes a couple of times and found one that I can use.  Over the last couple of months, I've developed rashes from body lotions, facial moisturizers, makeup, bar soaps, and toilet paper.  I've switched to unbleached toilet paper, which helped a lot, but I've still got some irritation of my genitals and anus (I'm a woman).  It gets better when I switch to a new kind of soap, but then I get sensitized to that and I start having problems again.  The last soap I tried was unscented, "hypoallergenic" (that term doesn't seem to mean much when it comes to me!) glycerin soap and it made the irritation flare up after a couple of days of use.  

Do you have any ideas for what I can use to wash my genitals with that won't make me itch?  I used Cetaphil today for the first time, but if I can't use that, I have no idea what I can try next. Have you ever heard of anyone having an allergy to bleached toilet paper?  It's a new one on me!  And can allergy tests help me identify which chemicals I need to avoid in skin products?  I'm frustrated and a little frightened--I keep wondering how bad this is going to get . . . .

Thank you very much for any help you can give.
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12 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,

You need to see an allergy specialist at the earliest. You need a proper clinical evaluation to find out the cause of your increased skin sensitivity to the various products you are using.

You probably would need to get an allergy testing done. have you tried taking oral antihistamine medications or antiallergic medications? Have they helped?

It would also help to keep the area clean and apply calamine lotion at the sites to help soothe the itching.

Let us know what your specialsit tell syou after the clinical evaluation and what medications are prescribed.

Regards.
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Avatar_n_tn
Well, I agree that I need to see an allergist, but I don't make a lot of money and I don't have insurance, so that's going to have to wait.  I haven't taken any antihistamines because I've been able to eliminate most of my problems by using different products.  Now I've just got the genital irritation and it's pretty minor--not worth the unpleasant side effects I get from oral antihistamines.  I just need some help figuring out what cleansing products I can try that will be less likely to give me problems.  And I would like to understand this situation better; any books or web sites you can recommend would be much appreciated.

Thank you for your time.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,

You should try keeping the area clean and also apply calamine lotion and ask your doctor to prescribe some products.

This should help relieve your symptoms. you should still keep oral antihistamine medications handy in case of a flare up of your symptoms.

Let us know how you are doing and also if you have any other queries.

Hope this helps.

Good luck.
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Avatar_f_tn
I too am allergic to so many thing.   Have you tried using glycerin bar soap.  You should be able to purchase some at a health food star.  It's not that expensive.. Its all natural without any heavy perfumes or dyes etc..

I have also used  unscented or mildly scented all natural dish soap for  the genital area and have had good results.

Hope this helps.

Julie  
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,

How are you doing now? Have you been to an allergy specialist as yet or tried oral antihistamine medications?

Let us know if you have any doubts.

Hope this helps.

Regards.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for your suggestions!  I tried unscented glycerin soap and had a pretty bad reaction to it, unfortunately (it felt like it was burning my skin).  I'm using Cetaphil and that seems to be okay, though I still have a little residual irritation.  I'm also using that on my face, as well as Physicians' Formula moisturizer and foundation, and haven't had any problems with those products.  I had to switch to a lip balm from the health food store, but otherwise I'm doing okay.  I'll keep the dish soap idea in mind in case I start having problems with the Cetaphil.

Thanks again for your help.  I really appreciate it.
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Avatar_n_tn
Please see my comment from March 2.
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Avatar_f_tn
I've been very sensitive to most commercial type soaps/personal care items for a long time.  I know many people use toothpastes sold in health food stores, however I've found the mentadent to be pretty non irritating. As far as tissues, I'd make sure you're not buying the kind w/any softeners/ additives. (kleenex plain or scotties plain have been fine for me).  As far as soaps, dove sensitive skin is ok, but I've found the unscented 99cent glycerine bars sold in whole foods etc to be even less irritating - when I want more "scubbing power" I just use a little baking soda with the soap. I'm sens. to all toil tissue, except for the plain (not softened) Scott TP. Hope this helps.
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Avatar_f_tn

You might also try Basis or Phisoderm bar.  Also, I've noticed that the bars made for dry skin sometimes leave an irritating film, and that the normal to oily skin type is sometimes cleaner and does not leave any irritating film.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,

How are you doing now?


What specific queries do you have so that we can help you with sites that are specific to your doubts.

Keep us posted.

Regards.
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Avatar_n_tn
I think you must be psychic!  ;)  I was just thinking today that I might have to switch to unbleached tissues since I've started having some itching on my face again.  I stopped using the kind with lotion a while ago, but now I think I'm going to go to the unbleached ones, since I've had such good results with the unbleached toilet paper.  Thanks so much for all your good ideas--I will definitely try them out.

Do you know of any websites or books that deal with these sorts of problems with multiple allergies?  The only stuff I've seen has to do with Multiple Chemical Sensitivity and doesn't seem particularly scientific.

Thank you again for your help.  
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi there.  I'm doing okay, though my face has been a little itchy over the past few days.  I'm guessing that's due to the tissues I'm using, so I'm going to switch to unbleached ones and see if that helps.  

What I would like now is to understand this situation a little better.  Do you know of any websites or books having to do with this kind of extreme sensitivity to skin products?  I haven't been able to find any that have a solid scientific foundation.  I'm not interested in homeopathy, Reiki, colloidal silver, or any other form of pseudoscience; what I'm looking for is evidence-based information on problems like mine.  Do you know of any resources along those lines?

Thank you so much for your help.
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