Online Poll: Mental Health Symptoms of Mold Exposed

YOURE-NOT-CRAZY

Mental Health Symptom Survey results & poll conducted by Mental Health Professional and mold survivor Jen Higginbotham.

In earlier group polling we found mental health symptoms at the very top of the poll for mold exposed individuals. It does not come as a shock to me as my own son Jared took his life at the tender age of 17 after experiencing major personality changes following our exposure. The research is in toxic mold affects the brain, in fact it has been proven in a federal court in Virginia this year that toxic mold exposure causes brain injury. At the end of this poll please see some references to some research involving toxic mold and its affect on the brain.

Total Participants: 131

Section 1: Questions related to suicidal ideation

Anxiety  (97) – 74%

Social Withdrawal (96)  73%

Feeling Disconnected (95) 73%

Depression (92) 70%

Mood Swings (90) 69%

Inability to cope with daily activities or problems (88) 67%

Felt Like Giving Up (87) 66%

Anger Outbursts (82) 63%

Apathy – loss of interest (79) 60%

Felt Like a Burden to Others (72) 55%

Felt Hopeless (75) 57%

Isolation (63) 48%

Felt Trapped or in Unbearable Pain (56) 43%

Suicidal Thoughts (53) 40%

Talked About or Thought About Wanting to Die (52) 40%

Wanted Out Just to End Suffering (49) 37%

Section 2: Additional Survey Questions Related to MH stress/symptoms

Problems Thinking (108) 82%

Drop in Functioning (92) 70%

Panic Attacks (73) 56%

Exaggerated Startle Response (70) 53%

Intense Fear (64) 49%

Believing You Are Damaged, Broken or Crazy

Because No One Believes You (48) 37%

PTSD (40) 31%

Persistent Nightmares (38) 29%

Straight Up PISSY (29) 22%

Trauma From Family Abandonment (21) 16%

 

****Some research on Mold and its effects on the brain

Court Ruling FEDERAL COURT, mold caused Brain Injury http://www.vaneuropsychiatry.org/recent-news/

“April 2016:  NeuroQuant® and NeuroGage™ admitted as evidence in court

On April 4, 2016, NeuroQuant® and NeuroGage™ were admitted as evidence by Judge Raymond A. Jackson in a Federal court case in Norfolk, VA (Federico, et al. v. Lincoln Military Housing, LLD, et al.) despite the objections of defense counsel.  This was the first time these brain volume measurement tools were admitted in Federal court.  David E. Ross, M.D., neuropsychiatrist, testified on the neuropsychiatric aspects of mold-related illness which had affected the Federicos, including the NeuroQuant® and NeuroGage™ MRI brain volume measurements.  The results showed a combined pattern of brain enlargement/atrophy similar to that found in two pioneering studies published by Ritchie Shoemaker, M.D. and colleagues.  The jury found in favor of the plaintiffs.

Dr. Shoemaker has hypothesized that the brain enlargement/atrophy is caused by chronic neuroinflammation. This idea is supported by his finding that clinical treatment leads to normalization of brain volume.

In court, positive rulings are important because they set a positive precedent, which means that judges in future cases will be more likely to admit these types of results than if there had been previous negative rulings. Also, setting a positive precedent in Federal court is particularly helpful because state courts tend to follow the lead of the Federal court.”

Evidence/ Research Mold Passes Blood Brain Barrier

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111215094811.htm

“The mold fungus Penicillium crustosum occurs relatively frequently in food and animal fodder stored in temperate conditions. This mold produces powerful neurotoxins, for example penitrem A, which causes symptoms that are difficult to distinguish from those of other neurological diseases. Penitrem A is capable of penetrating the blood-brain barrier and new research has unveiled the mechanisms behind the neurological effects of the toxin.”

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/09/03/molds-making-you-ill.aspx

“One of the reasons mycotoxins are so toxic is they can cross directly into your brain. According to Dr. Thrasher, your olfactory neurons are in direct communication with your brain—there is no barrier. Anything you have inhaled or smelled, even if it doesn’t have an odor, can go directly into your brain via these olfactory neurons. Mycotoxins have even been found to enter your brain via optic muscles and optic nerves. This lack of a blood-brain barrier has been confirmed in scientific studies.5


Studies/Research/Findings on Mold and the Brain

https://www.sciencenews.org/article/mold-may-mean-bad-news-brain

“Harding and colleagues also found that the behaviors linked to increased inflammatory proteins in the hippocampus. Exposure to mold’s toxins and structural proteins may trigger an immune response in the brain. The findings, Harding says, may help explain some of the conditions that people living in moldy buildings complain about, such as anxiety and cognitive problems.”

http://www.cnn.com/HEALTH/blogs/paging.dr.gupta/2007/08/are-you-suffering-from-brain-mold.html

“In what’s being hailed as a first, a public health study led by Brown University finds a link between regular old household mold and depression.

The study included data from the World Health Organization of nearly 6,000 people in Europe.

Some of the science is intuitive – sure, if you have a moldy home, you’re likely to feel out of control – and perceptions of control are linked to depression.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2998645/

“The TOVA test provides an objective measure of these two variables. It was found that mold-exposed subjects show statistically significant decreases in attention span and significant increases in reaction time to stimuli compared to controls. After ten sessions of hyperbaric oxygen treatment (HBOT), a statistically significant improvement was seen in both measures. This preliminary study suggests promising outcomes in treating mold-exposed patients with hyperbaric oxygen.”

http://orangemold.net/effects-of-mold-on-the-brain/

“In a 2003 research by the Environmental Health Center-Dallas, 100 individuals were checked out in an effects of mold on the brain initiative to reveal exactly how hazardous mold direct exposure could lead and also impact the brain to psychological as well as intellectual problems. Brain SPECT scans likewise recognized problems in a substantial part of the individuals examined”

http://www.knowthecause.com/index.php/doctors-and-trade-professionals/877-fungal-brain-infections-more-common

“Fungal (mold) infections to the brain were once relatively rare. Now they are becoming increasingly more common for many reasons including: 1) increases in the number of HIV/ AIDS patients, 2) increases in the number of patients with certain cancers like leukemia or lymphoma, 3) increases in patients on immunosuppressive therapy for organ or bone marrow transplants, and 4) increased numbers of patients on long term antibiotic therapy which can encourage mold overgrowth. The most common fungi to cause brain infections include filament-forming fungi like Aspergillus, Mucor and Rhizopus and yeast-type fungi such as Candida and Cryptococcus. Less common causes of fungal brain infections include Trichosporon, Blastomyces, Histoplasma, Coccidioides, Paracoccidioides and Penicillium marneffei.

The most common form of fungal brain infections are meningitis, although these infections cause also present as localized brain infections called abscesses.”

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2502811/Can-damp-mouldy-rooms-increase-risk-Parkinsons.html

“As a result of this experience, Dr Bennett decided to investigate the connection between moulds and the symptoms she had experienced.

She and Dr Inamdar discovered that the volatile organic compound 1-octen-3-ol, otherwise known as mushroom alcohol, can cause movement disorders in fruit flies.”

http://www.designntrend.com/articles/26886/20141122/mold-bad-brain.htm

“Psychologist Cheryl Harding and a team from the City University of New York conducted experiments, investigating if mold affects the brain. They used a mouse model and intranasal delivery of mold spores three times a week. Turns out, the mice exposed to mold were more anxious than normal mice and also had trouble remembering a location that previously induced a fear response.”

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3022735/Seen-ghost-inhaled-toxic-mould-Poor-air-quality-old-buildings-lead-haunting-hallucinations.html

“Researchers claim that older buildings where hauntings are usually reported, often have poor air quality from pollutants like toxic mould, which can affect our brains.

Exposure to the mould can cause mood swings, irrational anger and cognitive impairment.”

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/268076368_Mold_inhalation_brain_inflammation_and_behavioral_dysfunction

“Our data suggest that respiratory exposure to any mold, not just the particularly toxic ones like Stachybotrys, may be capable of causing brain inflammation, cognitive deficits, and emotional problems.”

http://www.hunter.cuny.edu/psychology/faculty/the-faculty-folder/harding

“As a neuroscientist, I am particularly intrigued by the effects of mold exposure on neural function and cognition.  Recent research has documented that people who lived or worked in moldy buildings had multiple cognitive problems.”

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3654247/

Dr Janette Hope, 2013

Some of the most distressing symptoms encountered by patients following exposure to water-damaged indoor environments and toxigenic molds include neurocognitive disturbances. A disturbing study, conducted in Poland, measured IQ scores in children exposed to indoor mold for greater than two years, showed statistically significant IQ deficits in children exposed to indoor mold [79]. This study controlled for multiple variables and involved testing of 277 term babies at age 6 years using the WISC-R scale of intelligence and tests of neuropsychological function. Children exposed to indoor molds showed a statistically significant deficit of approximately 10 points. Additionally, it was shown in this study that longer exposure to indoor molds tripled the risk for low IQ scores defined as values below the 25th percentile.

https://www.survivingmold.com/community/mary-ackerley-the-brain-on-fire-the-role-of-toxic-mold-in-triggering-psychiatric-symptoms

“I got more interested in mold and began to read Dr. Shoemaker’s work to learn about biotoxin illness. After learning how to do these strange labs, I found that a high percentage of my integrative psychiatric patients had some degree of biotoxin illness.  They had haplotypes that meant they were susceptible to becoming ill after mold exposure and/or elevated cytokine levels.”

 

Online Poll: Diagnosed or Misdiagnosed Conditions Reported by Mold Exposed

Online Poll Created by Sarah Norton 

Roughly 100 Facebook Toxic Mold Support Groups members were polled. What were you diagnosed/misdiagnosed with while living in a moldy environment? Poll Results revealed nearly all were diagnosed with Anxiety and Depression, and this was followed by allergies to foods and environment. 

  • Dr Mary Ackerley  found almost all individuals with depression or anxiety have some alteration in the function of their endocrine or immune system, and she found many of her psychiatric patients had some degree of biotoxin illness.

https://www.survivingmold.com/community/mary-ackerley-the-brain-on-fire-the-role-of-toxic-mold-in-triggering-psychiatric-symptoms

Testing For Toxic Damage

Brain_8

One out of Two Mold Exposed Individuals Has a Mold Allergy, Do You?

  • 2005 study researchers examined 36 children and 29 adults thought to have toxic mold syndrome,  about 50% were allergic to molds.
  • Allergies contribute to migraine headaches, depression, mood swings, joint and muscle pain, and irritable bowel syndrome. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2802005/

“This Illness Is Not an Allergy.” Dr. Ritchie Shoemaker

“This illness is not an allergy. It is an inflammation within the body which is caused by an immune system that has gone haywire. The term “mold illness” is a subcategory of biotoxin illness called Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS). The proper definition of CIRS is: An acute and chronic, systemic inflammatory response syndrome acquired following exposure to the interior environment of a water-damaged building.”

http://www.survivingmold.com/diagnosis

Group Poll Results

Anxiety

Depression

Allergies (Food and Environmental)

Migraines/Headaches

Adrenal Issues Fatigue/Burnout  

Chemical Sensitivities

Vertigo

ME/CFS

Acid Reflux

Fibromyalgia

Elevated Heart Rate

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Unknown Autoimmune

Hormonal Issues

Nerve Damage of Unknown Etiology

Urinary Tract Infections

Interstitial Cystitis

Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS), Dysautonomia

Suicidal Ideation

Thyroid Issues

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Excema

ADD/ADHD

Arthritis

Malnutrition

High Blood Pressure

Digestive Issues, Chron’s Disease, Colitis

Weight Loss/Weight Gain

Heart Murmur

Low Blood Pressure

Blurred Vision

Degenerative Disc Disease

Chronic Yeast/Thrush

Bronchitis

Cognitive Issues  

Bipolar Disorder

Asthma

Sinus Damage/Growth 

Infectious Diseases Unknown

Chronic Viral Infections

Gallbladder Issues

Wheezing

Nausea

Ear Infections

Lupus

Diabetes

Chronic Rupturing Cysts

Suicide

Severe Abdominal Pain

Narcolepsy

MS

Embolism

Repetitive Injuries

Allergic to Nickel

Impetigo

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)  

Autism

Hoarding  

Staph

Hashimoto’s

Borderline Personality

Cancer

 

Top Symptoms of Mold Exposure, Its not Just in Your Head!

tmi

Memory Loss Research

A NY University delivered a low dose of toxic Stachybotrys into the noses of mice three times per week. After three weeks, the mice didn’t appear sick, However, they had difficulty remembering a fearful place and were more anxious than normal counterparts. (Science News, 2014)

In 2003 a study on molds and mycotoxins in building-related illnesses found that 70 percent of patients had physical signs and symptoms of neurological dysfunction (e.g., inability to stand on the toes or to walk a straight line with eyes closed, as well as short-term memory loss). (Environmental Health Center Dallas, 2003)

Depression Research

A groundbreaking Brown University study found a link between damp, moldy homes and depression. This came after a few UK studies discovered a link. (Brown University, 2007)

Face Book Groups Reveal Their Symptoms

Based on all of this it should be no surprise that the vast majority of you experienced Memory Loss just like the mice. What was  interesting about the poll results is that it is clear the brain is deeply impacted by toxic mold exposure. When the majority of you also experienced depression it only strengthens this conclusion. When number three and four are dizziness and headache again we are dealing with brain symptoms. Mold affects our cognition, and our our overall physical well being. This poll causes me to ask how many patients who are seeing Mental Health Doctor’s are not really suffering from mental illness, but rather from toxic mold or other toxic environmental exposure? The studies have been in for years, and now our poll is in. Real victims, telling a real story…. We are not crazy!!  It’s not just in our head. Mold profoundly impacts brain function, maybe more than we ever realized.

  1. Memory Loss
  2. Depression
  3. Dizziness
  4. Headache
  5. Joint Pain
  6. Heart Palpitations
  7. Insomnia
  8. Tiredness
  9. CFS, Back Pain, Hair Loss
  10. Ringing in the Ears
  11. Dark Circle Under Eyes & Puffy Eyes
  12. Blurry Vision
  13. Word Loss
  14. Dry Aging & Sagging Skin
  15. Rashes
  16. Acid Reflux
  17. Stomach Issues
  18. Weakness
  19. Brain Fog
  20. Twitching Eye Lids & Muscles
  21. Fibromyalgia
  22. Brain on Fire
  23. Shortness of Breath
  24. Rage
  25. Unexplained Bruising
  26. Horrible Negligent Doctor’s
  27. Chest Pain
  28. Flashes of Light in Field of Vision
  29. Candida
  30. Lowered Libido
  31. Dehydration
  32. Hypothyroid
  33. Red Spots
  34. Pins and Needles
  35. PTSD
  36. Intense Brain/Skull Pressure
  37. Recurring Sinus issues
  38. Temporary Anger Outbursts When Exposed
  39. Asthma Attacks
  40. Faintness
  41. Neuropathy/Nerve Pain
  42. Inability to Heal
  43. Waking up Gasping
  44. Other Immune Disorders
  45. Lumps under skin
  46. Black Spots in Eyes
  47. Burning Stomach
  48. Coughing
  49. Zapping Pains
  50. IBS
  51. Stiff Neck/Joints
  52. Nausea
  53. MCS
  54. Chronic Yeast Infections
  55. Frequent Urination
  56. Food intolerance and Increased Allergies
  57. POTS
  58. Slurring of Words
  59. Finger Nail Ridges
  60. Blood in Nasal Mucus
  61. Suicidal Thoughts
  62. Inability to Swallow
  63. Excema
  64. Temp Regulation Issues
  65. Bleeding Gums
  66. Night Sweats
  67. Sores or Boils
  68. Hives
  69. Blood in Stool
  70. Ataxia
  71. Electric Shocks
  72. Loss of bowel Control
  73. Impetigo
  74. Seizures
  75. ADHD
  76. Bloody Noses
  77. Coughing blood
  78. Sore Throat
  79. Burning Feet, eyes, mouth, throat
  80. Chronic Bacterial Infections (ear, eyes, throat, ect)
  81. Systemic Fungal Disease
  82. Kidney Infections
  83. Night Terrors
  84. Cancer
  85. Waking up due to inability to breath
  86. Body Odor
  87. Removal of Tonsils and Adenoids
  88. Incontinence
  89. Chronic Recurring Flu
  90. Fainting/Passing out
  91. Eyes Oozing
  92. Bleeding from Ears
  93. Recurring Ruptured Ovarian Cysts
  94. Excessive Menstrual Bleeding
  95. Chronic Fungal Infections, Multiple Sites
  96. Post Nasal Drip
  97. Swollen Kidneys
  98. Parasites
  99. Blacking out
  100. Ear and Sinus Surgeries

There are so many others to add. We will need to re-poll the groups with all these great answers. One that was on there and may have been forgotten by other groups was suicidal thoughts. I hear many talk about this, but sometimes when picking symptoms we forget.. (I mean we are moldies, check the number one symptom, if you have already forgotten what it is) 😉    I would like to re-poll in the future so that we are all picking from the same list and can get a more accurate count.

 

 

Online Poll: Top Supplements for Mold Illness

Closeup of Echinacea extract pills and fresh Echinacea flowers and leaves best suited for alternative medicine ads

Recently, we polled Facebook Mold Groups and asked them what supplements are helping them the most with their illness. There were many answers but these were by far the top supplements chosen.

Magnesium (47 Votes)
Probiotics (37)
Charcoal (32)
Epsom Salts (27)
Gluten Avoidance (24)
CSM (Cholestyramine) (21)
High Dose Vitamin D (17)
Zinc (13)
Fish Oil (11)
Liposomal Vitamin C and High Dose Vitamin C (tied) (10)
Essential Oils (9)
Glutathione, Turmeric, and Full Extract Cannabis Oil (tied) (8)

Honorable mentions go the following…
Intramax (6)
Mostly Raw Vegan Diet (6)
Meat Protein (6)
Green Juicing (6)
Silver (6)
Milk Thistle (6)
Vitamin E (6)
Curcumin (6)
Neti Pot (5)
Bentonite Clay (5)
Baking Soda (5)
Digestive Enzymes (5)
Garlic (5)
Gluten free, sugar, dairy, egg, and corn free diet (5)
Fasting (4)
Chlorella (4)
Apple Cider Vinegar (4)
L-Theanine (4)
Alpha Lipoic Acid (4)
BEG Spray (4)
Activated Folic Acid (4)
Ionic Foot Bath (4)
Molybdenum (4)
Coconut Oil (3)
Coffee Enema (3)
Zeolite (3)
Rosemary (3)
Selenium (3)
Boswellia (3)
Thieves Oil (3)
MCT Oil (3)
Saccharomyces Boulardii (3)
CoQ10 (2)
Bee Venom (2)
Welchol (2)
Drinking Olive Oil and Lemon (2)
Oxygen (2)
Flaxseed Oil (2)
B-12 (2)
Calm (2)
Asea (2)
Spices, Cinnamon, Cloves, (2)
Vasopressin (2)
Weed (2)
Parasite Cleanse (1)
Dhea-S (1)
Noni Juice (1)
Restore (1)
DMSA (1)
Univera Xtra (1)
Moringa (1)
Trans Factor (1)
Boron (1)
Niacin (1)
Iodine (1)
Chlorophyll (1)
Chloro Oxygen (1)