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26 November 2008

stinky stinks

Yes, we know that strange smells bother many migraineurs, and I am but one of that many. More often than not, smells really get on my nerves but don't trigger migraine attacks. Occasionally, though, the smells are so strong or my brain's state is such that one sniff of an undesirable fragrance can spin the migraine gears into action, bringing about a bad attack.

As much as I dislike cigarette smoke, I appreciate one thing about it: I can tell when it's coming. You can see the smoke, and you can (usually) walk away. I anticipate the smell and ready my brain for it; often I pull my hands up to my face and create a makeshift mask from the loosened sleeve of my shirt or jacket. I can walk away, or I can ask the smokers (if they're friends) to get clear away from me. In the grocery store, I can create a wide berth between me and the fish counter; if I catch a whiff of a strongly cologned shopper, I can relocate to another aisle and leave my nose in freedom.

What is irking me at the moment is the awful, horrible, plasticky chemical smell that seems to have taken root in my nostrils and my mouth, seemingly leaving my tongue with a gross coating, as if I'd stuck my tongue out and colored it with a Sharpie and topped it all off with a dash of turpentine.

I bought a spool of new CD-Rs and decided to take a blank one out and finally make the photo CD for a friend who asked for it ten months ago. (Lazy Jane strikes again!) The packaging was a bit hard to get off, but once I removed the crinkly plastic, I was ready to lift the cakebox-like lid off the CDs and grab a blank one.

The smell wafted toward--nay, slapped!--my face. The stench of melted plastic, old permanent marker ink, manufacturing chemicals, nastiness. Yech. I replaced the lid immediately after removing a CD, but it was too late. The smell now lives on and in me!

Do you ever feel as if a smell has stuck with you, that there's nothing you can do to rid your body of the scent? This happens to me all the time, but when I mention it to others, they don't seem to know what the heck I'm talking about. I could leave the office right now and step outside, but the smell of these CD-Rs would still linger in my nostrils and in my mouth. It takes a while for me to shake smells away, to have them leave my system. Sniffing a strong perfume is not something that lasts just a moment for me--the smell takes up residence in my nose and mouth and won't leave me for quite a while.

Anyone else experience this phenomenon?

3 comments:

Emily said...

i know exactly what you mean. and it stinks! cigarette smoke will trigger me - and i've gotten it stuck on my clothes and/or hair, bad enough that i had to change clothes entirely and/or shower to get the smelly situation under control.

themuseasylum said...

Hi, lurker here. :)

I have had scents that are unpleasant (to me) that seem to stick to my nasal membranes. I smell them, leave the environment, and can still smell them long after they are gone. Sometimes hours later, even.

There is a smell in the house I am living in right now that bothers me, and it gets so stuck in my nose that I can still smell it after days of being away from the house.

Mary Carol said...

You KNOW this is so me---most especially, not to diminish the nasal stuff that are sometimes awful--the TONGUE "issues" so oft. Ugh...ugh...ugh...I think I get sympathy from your dad but still...he often looks surprised when I complain about the tongue-related awful thing of a sudden whatever-it-may-be-to-do-this-to -your-ma.

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