Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Toxic Avenger

The following article was written by a friend of mine, Scarygirl67. This was posted on Debunk Paranormal's website: http://wwps.grou.ps/home I think this is excellent information and am grateful "Scary" gave me permission to repost here. --- Carolyn

The Toxic Avenger

I apologize if this topic has been covered. I would like to focus on physical symptoms of toxins that can occur which may feel paranormal to someone. It is part of why it is so important to pull an EPA report on the area of a client investigation.

I read people talking about skin rashes or welts that seem to appear out of nowhere and with no definitive cause. What is bothering me is how often I see someone pop up claiming to be a "demon doctor" or a "banishing expert" or God help us all..a "certified demonologist", and will say that these welts are the result of a demonic attack. Now granted, anyone who is going to buy that load of crap may need a serious reality check, but the beef I have is with those who take advantage of people that are afraid of what is happening to them. As investigators, we have to educate ourselves on all possible causes for symptoms. We are not doctors, nor should we try to diagnose. After all, there are many other things besides toxins that can cause a skin rash, such as stress and allergies. These are simply things to keep in mind and to check for if this comes up in a client's questionnaire.

Unfortunately, toxins cannot be completely avoided, which is why it is important to learn what is in our air, water, land, and in our homes. In a client case, it is important to find out what they do for a living and what toxins they may be exposed to in their work environment. If it does indeed turn out to be a physical reaction to an environmental toxin, steps can be taken to avoid the problem. Doctors (not the demon kind..I mean the ones who actually went to medical school) can be seen for treatment. And best of all..you don't have to stink up the house with sage or fling one drop of holy water!

Some of the toxins that should be looked for if a client includes bizarre skin irritations as part of their paranormal claims are:

1) Formaldehyde; Found in a variety of products such as glues, wood resins and preservatives, insulation, particleboard, nail polish, paints, enamels, and many other things in the home. It is also found in maple syrup made in the U.S. and toothpaste. Check for any changes in use of these items or if there has been recent remodeling or any reason that insulation or wood exterior is being disturbed. Also check to see if anyone has recently gotten a job exposing them to this chemical.

2) Chromium: Chromium III naturally occurs in many foods such as fruits, vegetables, yeasts, and grains. Our bodies need a certain amount of it, but as with anything else, too much can be toxic and cause skin rashes. Storing grains in bins for long periods of time can concentrate the levels of chromium III. Chromium is also used in alloy metals such as steel to resist damage and give a mirrored finish. Chromium IV is used in the manufacture of magentic tape and is much more toxic.

3)Pesticides: The effects from dermal exposure to DEET can cause skin irritation, although it is a small number in relation to the many people who use it. Pesticides used in farming end up in the drinking water and food that we eat, and depending on the person's sensitivity and amount of exposure, can cause skin irritations even in short term use.

4)Food and cosmetic colors: D & C Red 30 Lake, D & C Violet 2, Direct Black 38, Ext. D & C Violet 2, FD & C Blue 1, FD & C Green 3, FD & C Yellow 5, FD & D Yellow 5 Aluminium Lake, FD & C Yellow 6, are all skin irritants.found in many cosmetics, bath and beauty products, and foods.

As in all things, look at each explainable possibility for an answer to a client's concerns. Keep in mind that by the time a client calls in a paranormal team, they often believe that they have tried everything else and are at their wits end. As investigators we need to be objective and help them rule out all explainable causes to see if they have missed anything. A good idea would be for a client to take documented inventory of recent changes in cosmetics or foods as well as a check of household cleaning products. If anyone in the home has recently gotten a job that exposes them to a toxic chemical, it should be noted. The investigators can pull a toxicology report from the Environmental Protection Agency to see what might be in the air, water, or ground of the area.

But what if only one person in a family or living arrangement is suffering mysterious rashes or welts? Quite simply, everyone has different sensitivities to chemicals and not everyone who is exposed is going to have a physical reaction.

In my opinion, the last thing a client needs to hear is a testimonial of how great someone is at removing a demon when a claim such as skin rashes or welts is made. The FIRST thing on our minds should be the client and their health..not a half-assed theory of how "demons always make themselves known by scratching or biting their victims". Really now? THAT'S moving this field forward? No! The truth will. And the truth is that a skin rash or welts that appear suddenly are most likely caused by something environmental and it needs to be found and addressed.

Information for this blog was obtained from the following links.




Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A Brief Rant

Sometimes I am told I am kinda harsh on some para TV shows and enthusiasts. People argue with me that they are harmless fun and I "take the whole ghost hunting thing too seriously". Maybe. But today I encountered another example why it matters.

A young high school girl joined a networking site for paranormal investigators, MyPara.net. She posted ONE picture from her ONE investigation, which was nothing more than a case of paradoelia from reflections in the windows. I politely gave her my opinion on and suggested in the future she take comparison shots, etc.

Then she posts that she has launched her website. This website lists her phone number to book investigations. When other site members tried to tell her she needs to do a little more research into scientific causes of claims, she deleted her account. In other words, she has no interest in learning to be a paranormal investigator, she just wants to call herself a paranormal investigator!

She's just one girl, but the scary thing is there are plenty of people just like her out there claiming to be "experts" in the paranormal and are going into people's houses to "help" them! They may have a sincere interest, but when all their "training" consists of watching para TV shows and reading New Age books, they have NO business making such claims.

If you truly love the paranormal as much as I do, and sincerely want to help people, you will take the time and effort to thoroughly research common scientific explanations for claims BEFORE you throw up a website and call yourself an investigator. Otherwise you are doing your clients a disservice and are a detriment to the field.