Debbie Gibson recently revealed that Lyme disease had made her a recluse because the disease is so painful. Lyme disease makes her ultra-sensitive to so many things in daily life that avoidance often means staying home.
She described the dance floor of the Dancing with the Stars stage like a “minefield.” She can’t tolerate so many things that others just take for granted. Debbie recently divulged, “I have sensitivities to perfumes, colognes, hairspray, electromagnetics, smoke on the dance floor,” according to Fox News.
If she is around too much perfume, it basically shuts down her immune system due to her Lyme disease. She jokes that she’s asked her friend on the Dancing with the Stars, pro-dancer Cheryl Burke, to come in one day without wearing any perfume so Debbie can give her a hug.
For her disease, Gibson is treated by a chiropractic kinesiologist. Her treatment from this specialist combines the use of “energetic medicine,” along with supplements.
According to Lyme Disease.org, Lyme disease can cause some people to develop an “extreme sensitivity to light, sound, or various chemicals in the environment.” The sensitivity to chemicals in the environment is called multiple chemical sensitivity or MCS.
For the people with this sensitivity, being around fumes from gasoline, perfume, or even the chemicals in certain laundry detergents, can be life-threatening. This is not like a hay fever allergy; the person suffering from MCS can find their airways closing if they are near these chemicals.
One case noted on Lyme Disease.org explains how a teen with MCS might encounter problems. Makayla Berndt has MCS. and on her way back from the doctors with her mother, the car needed gas. Because Makayla cannot be around gas fumes, her mother dropped her off at a nearby park to wait while she took the car to get gas.
Makayla wore sunglasses due to light sensitivity, and she wears a mask to filter out any pollutants in the environment. It was in the evening, so it was dark, but Makayla could see the gas station from where she stood. He mother made her take a canister of pepper spray with her as she waited.
Two officers of the law pulled up and shined a flashlight at the teen, which made her jump back due to the light sensitivity. Both officers got out of the car and came toward her. She could feel the effect of the chemicals in their laundry soap as they got closer, so she moved back.
She told the police she had Lyme disease, which resulted in MCS, and she couldn’t inhale the scent of the laundry soap they used. The cops acted as if they didn’t believe her. When she told them she didn’t have ID because her mother dropped her off at the park to go gas up the car, they seemed to think something was up.
With that, her mom came back and yelled at the police to step away from her, as the chemicals from what their clothes were washed in were starting to close up her throat. Once her mom explained, the police believed the bizarre but true story.
While it is not known what Debbie Gibson goes through on a daily basis, you can see how someone’s life can change drastically once stricken with this sensitivity brought on by Lyme Disease.
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