A two-week monitoring of self-reported arousal, worry and attribution among persons with annoyance attributed to electrical equipment and smells.

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Abstract

Non-patients attributing annoyance to either smells (smell annoyed; SA, n= 29) or electrical equipment (electrically annoyed; EA, n= 17), or both (generally annoyed; GA, n= 38), were monitored for 2 weeks through daily self-ratings of arousal (stress), sleep disturbances, health complaints, worry about hypersensitivity reactions, avoidance behaviors, and attributions of health complaints to electrical equipment and smells. In parallel, a demographically matched reference group was followed (n= 56). GA persons reported higher arousal (stress), more subjective health complaints, and more sleep disturbances than the other groups. About 60% in the GA and EA groups reported intentional avoidance behavior, compared to 31% in the SA group and 2% of the referents. Worry and attribution to environmental factors was also more frequent among GA persons than in the other groups. Thus, even at sub-clinical levels, environmental annoyance generalized to several triggers seems to be associated with behaviors commonly observed among patients with idiopathic environmental intolerance.

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  • Psychology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)345-356
JournalScandinavian Journal of Psychology
Volume49
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes