CHEMICAL EXPOSURE FIRST AID RECOMMENDATIONS

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First Aid for chemical exposures

If you suspect you or someone in your family has been exposed to harmful chemicals or toxics, it is recommended that you contact a physician immediately. If you suspect ingestion of chemicals or toxics, contact the Poison Control Center at 800-222-1222 or PoisonHelp.com for instructions.

Many doctors are not trained in environmental medicine or the effects of toxicants on the body. After administering first aid and seeking emergency medical care, it may be best to seek out a physician who specializes in environmental medicine and can provide medical advice and support for gentle detoxification and remediation. It is not recommended that chemically-exposed people engage in detoxification on their own without the support of a medical provider. Naturopathic physicians can be a great resource when seeking detoxification and remediation support. The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians has an online directory if you are interested in finding a naturopathic physician in your area: LINK

first aid recommendations for chemical exposure from the CDC

The following First Aid recommendations come from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health LINK

Eyes: 

If chemicals or toxics contact the eyes, immediately wash (irrigate) the eyes with large amounts of water, occasionally lifting the lower and upper lids. Get medical attention immediately.

If eye tissue is frozen, seek medical attention immediately; if tissue is not frozen, immediately and thoroughly flush the eyes with large amounts of water for at least 15 minutes, occasionally lifting the lower and upper eyelids. If irritation, pain, swelling, lacrimation, or photophobia persist, get medical attention as soon as possible.

skin:

If solid chemicals contact the skin, dust off immediately and then flush the contaminated skin with water. If liquid chemicals contact the skin, flush the contaminated area with water. If chemical or liquids containing this chemical penetrate the clothing, promptly remove the clothing and flush the skin with water. Get medical attention immediately.

If frostbite has occurred, seek medical attention immediately; do NOT rub the affected areas or flush them with water. In order to prevent further tissue damage, do NOT attempt to remove frozen clothing from frostbitten areas. If frostbite has NOT occurred, immediately and thoroughly wash contaminated skin with soap and water. If irritation continues, get medical attention.

If molten chemicals contact the skin, immediately flush the skin with large amounts of water. Get medical attention immediately. If chemicals (or liquids containing this chemical) contacts the skin, promptly wash the contaminated skin with soap and water. If this chemical or liquids containing this chemical penetrate the clothing, immediately remove the clothing and wash the skin with soap and water. If irritation persists after washing, get medical attention.

breath:

If a person breathes large amounts of chemicals, move the exposed person to fresh air at once. If breathing has stopped, perform artificial respiration. Keep the affected person warm and at rest. Get medical attention as soon as possible.

If a person breathes large amounts of toxic chemicals, move the exposed person to fresh air at once. If breathing has stopped, perform artificial respiration. When breathing is difficult, properly trained personnel may assist the affected person by administering 100% oxygen. Keep the affected person warm and at rest. Get medical attention as soon as possible.

ingestion:

Contact the Poison Control Center at 800-222-1222 or PoisonHelp.org for instructions.


 

Living well in toxic times: Integrative Self-care tools for fire recovery and resilience

 

In October, 2017, urban wildfires burned over 6000 structures and released known and unknown toxicants into our North California environment. Beyond our acute exposure, we are living amongst the residual toxicity from that traumatic event.  We gathered local experts in the fields of environmental medicine, integrative health care, and health psychology to share self-care tools that can be used to reduce exposure, naturally detoxify, and build resilient health. We shared this information at an event on March 10, 2018, for our community to learn everyday strategies for protecting health post-fires. Although this presentation was specific to the toxics exposures due to the fires, the doctors' presentations and recommendations are valuable for everyday living exposures as well. 

Living Well in Toxic Times featured keynote speakers addressing issues related to environmental toxicology, women’s and family health, vulnerable populations, and emotional resiliency. Breakout sessions followed and provided an opportunity to learn more about gut health and detoxification, respiratory health, preconception and pediatric care, oncology, bioremediation on the land and water, and stress reduction techniques.

Keynote Speakers included: 

Nichole Warwick, MA Psychology, is an inter-disciplinary facilitator working in environmental health, education, and therapeutic capacities for various organizations in the Bay Area. She works with Daily Acts, Bioneers, and the Reach Charter School. She also serves on the Ceres Community Project Board of Directors. In this capacity, she is the Environmental Health Programs Coordinator for Daily Acts, and will serve as moderator for the event. To learn more about Nichole: http://dailyacts.org/nichole-warwick/

Dr. Chris Holder, ND LAc, is a naturopathic physician with special interest in treatment and prevention of breast cancer. He put together the Bay Area Breast Health Collective, a prevention-oriented collective to prevent breast cancer. He offers a wide arrange of treatment options in his practice. To learn more about Chris, see his website: http://www.drchrisholder.com/about/

Dr. Jen Riegle, ND, specializes in women's health, fertility, biofeedback, and traditional medicine. She practices at Wild Oak Medicine. During the fires, she initiated integrative care at the evacuation centers and is currently collaborating to develop an Integrative Practitioners Network to respond to crisis. To learn more about Jen: https://www.drjenriegle.com/about/

Dr. Bridget Grusecki-Somine, ND specializes in food as medicine, environmental medicine, biofeedback, diabetes, gynecology, urology, and pediatrics. She has a private practice at Farmacopia. To learn more: http://www.drbridgetsomine.com/about/

Dr. Alisa Liguori, PhD., specializes in Health Psychology. She utilizes a variety of therapeutic approaches in her work, including Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, Behavioral Medicine, Psychodynamic Psychotherapy, and Hypnotherapy. Her interests in Mind-Body medicine are broad and varied, and include the areas of traumatic brain injury, stress management, grief, coping and resilience, aging, and the interface between physical conditioning, cognitive function and emotional and physical adaptation."  Alisa is a member of the Redwood Psychological Association and is co-chairing a committee working to address the psychological needs of our community post-fires. To learn more: http://northbaymedpsych.com/aboutus.html

Lily Mazzarella, MS Herbal Medicine, Board Certified Nutrition Specialist and owner of Farmacopia. She is also a core faculty at California School of Herbal Studies. Lily is brilliant at bridging conventional and holistic approaches to healing. To learn more about Lily, check out Farmacopia's website: http://farmacopia.net/about-us/our-practitioners/

Dr. Bonnie Nedrow, ND specializes in naturopathic medicine and toxicology, especially related to pre-conception, pre and post natal care, and pediatrics. She is licensed in OR and CA. She has published two books on detoxification and her signature Keto-Cleanse. She practices at River House in Petaluma and via remote consultation. To learn more about Bonnie: http://www.bonniend.com/about/