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Nausea, headache after exposure to paint fumes and varnish. Psychosomatic?

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Practicing since : 2005
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Is feeling ill from paint fumes psychosomatic?
I get nausea and headaches from toxic chemicals like paint fumes, varnish etc.
I have had a low exposure to chemicals throughout my life and wonder if this contibutes or if it is all in my head.
Posted Thu, 20 Sep 2012 in Environmental and Occupational Hazards
Answered by Dr. Piyush Ostwal 17 minutes later

Thanks for posting your query.

I see you have a genuine query and my answer is that it is not abnormal to get nausea and headache from these fumes. On the contrary, for the very same reason that these substances are harmful, they should be avoided.

The fumes from these petrochemicals can penetrate the body through the skin/ lungs/ nose etc. and get into the blood and into various XXXXXXX organs. Exposure to them in a high concentration can be XXXXXXX Your body has good ‘danger sensing mechanism’ and feels relaxed that it is not psychosomatic.

If you wish any further clarifications, I would be happy to help.

Good luck.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Nausea, headache after exposure to paint fumes and varnish. Psychosomatic? 16 minutes later
I wonder if it is known why some people experience this and others do not seem to be affected? I am in a non-ventilated area being painted now with a few other people and no one else is feeling this way. Are some people more sensitive to it than others?
Answered by Dr. Piyush Ostwal 20 minutes later

Yes, sure the sensitivity of different people will be different. Because the substance has to penetrate your skin/ respiratory tract, so the level of penetration will be different for different people. In addition, the body's response to same concentration of substance in blood will be different for everyone. You can understand it like alcohol's response for each individual is different. So is for each substance.

Hope this helps you. Do write back if you have more queries.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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