Smart discussion about toxics policy reform

Therapists Focus on Toxics and Kids

Here’s one measure of how much the issue of toxic contaminants’ effects on health and development — especially in children – has gained traction: A continuing education program aimed mostly at psychotherapists is devoting a day-long course to the subject this weekend in Boston.

It’s titled “Toxic Environmental Threats to Children’s Development: What We Know and What We Can Do.” The Saturday program will include presentations by several nationally prominent experts in environmental medicine, not exactly standard fare for psychiatrists and psychologists.

But increasingly it should be, says Dean Abby, director of continuing education at the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology, who helped organize the course. In an interview with Environmental Working Group, he noted that science has advanced in ways that now make it possible to study the often-subtle effects of chemical and other exposures on our bodies and on children’s vulnerable bodies. It’s important to make connections between those exposures and the behavioral and emotional problems that get treated by mental health professionals, he says:

It’s the same thrust that has come in the last 25 years in developing a scientific understanding of the mind-body connection. It just made sense to try to push the envelope a little bit, since developmental issues concern us. We train school psychologists particularly, who work in an environment where they see all kinds of developmental threats and problems whose source is hard to pin down.

The course is co-sponsored by the Boston Institute for the Development of Infants and Parents (BIDIP) and the Massachusetts Psychiatric Society. It is open to the public for a fee about half of what professionals, who can earn credit toward continuing education requirements, must pay. Among those who have registered in advance are parents and day care professionals. Said Abby:

Anybody today who’s not looking at this stuff with a bigger and broader perspective is missing something critically important. It’s designed to force people who have concerns about these questions to codify their thinking.

The invited speakers are pediatrician Philip Landrigan, M.D. of New York’s Mount Sinai School of Medicine; toxicologist Bernard Weiss, Ph.D. of the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry; neurologist David Bellinger of Boston’s Children’s Hospital; Megan Sandel, M.D. National Medical Director of the National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership in Boston; and Barbara Brenner, executive director of San Francisco-based Breast Cancer Action.

EWG, a leader in documenting the effects of toxics such as bisphenol-A — and in the fight to reform the federal government’s regulation of chemicals — wishes it could be there.

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6 Responses to “Therapists Focus on Toxics and Kids”

  1. Excellent post! Over and over, I’ve seen children cured of OCD symptoms when toxins are removed without drugs.

  2. I’m wondering if anyone has documented that in a rigorous way. Thanks.

  3. Ann says:

    My dictionary says toxics is an adjective. Shouldn’t it say “Therapists Focus on Toxins and Kids” and “documenting the effects of toxins”?

  4. Toxics Defined says:

    Ann, Toxics is plural for toxic, which is both a noun and an adjective.
    The word toxic originates from Greek toxikon which means bow poison, i.e. poison used on arrows.
    toxic (tok sik) noun A toxic chemical or other substance.
    adj. 1. Of, relating to, or caused by a toxin or other poison.
    2. Capable of causing injury or death, especially by chemical means; poisonous: food preservatives that are toxic in concentrated amounts; a dump for toxic industrial wastes.
    Source: whose source for this word is The American Heritage Dictionary fourth edition 2009

  5. Toxic Behavior says:

    U.S. food companies serve chemical food ingredients targeted to children (flavors, colors) banned in Europe. Boasting added vitamins distracts from fact it’s not real food. Latest trick: adding GMO corn fiber gets “high fiber” on labels. U.S. has SAME access to all studies EU has- artificial ingred DO cause behavior and other health problems. (as do many other chemicals in environment) We are government of the people, by the people, for the people. We need to take charge. If I were dirt poor I’d feed my kids brown rice, oatmeal, beans every day before I’d harm their minds and bodies with steady diet of flour & chemicals. (my picky eaters gradually got used to healthy foods, anyone can). Now they say of some foods they used to like: “too salty” “doesn’t taste like food” etc. Unnecessary chemicals not allowed- air fresheners, nail polish, shoe cleaner etc., etc. My kids used to complain, now I overhear them educating friends.

  6. Brad Lyons says:

    Interesting article. I have needed psychotherapy counciling since 1976 when someone poisoned me with an oily chemical which was placed on the handlebar grip of my dirt bike when I was 15 and living with my estranged father in Ventura. Within nine hours after riding my motorcycle that morning, I experienced an excruciatingly painful headache and convulsions. A month later, the chemical had absorbed into my bone marrow and mutated my bone marrow DNA which caused me to produce red blood cells with a weak, mishapen (deformed) membrane. These mishapen blood cells were being prematurely destroyed in my spleen as a result of no longer having the membrane strength to withstand the osmotic blood pressure of my capillary blood vessels in my spleen and elsewhere. From 1977 to 1981, I was enemic with jaundice from the mass destruction of my red blood cells. Two hematologists in Ventura, CA knew what someone had poisoned me with, but instead of telling me, they resorted to covering up the toxic tort crime by arranging for a motorist to hit the back of my motorcycle with the front bumper of his car while I was stopped at a red traffic light at night. The plan was to knock me off my motorcycle hard enough to rupture my enlarged spleen to create a medical excuse for me to end up in the local emergeny room where Evan Slater, M.D. and a Dr. Guyn had tipped off the emergency room surgeon to be expecting me to arrive with a ruptured spleen. The driver that hit me was told to move out of the state after Dr. Slater and Dr. Guyn discovered that the staged accident failed to rupture my enlarged spleen. About a year later, my spleen was removed by a Dr. Gaspard at Huntington Hospital in Pasadena, CA. Dr. Gaspard illegally eliminated any hospital records that my spleen was removed and illegally sold my intact spleen to a pharmaceutical company conducting immunology research to develop a new pharmaceutical drug. Several years later, I was to learn that a New York man who had been a toxic tort victim ended up with an enlarged spleen and was told he needed to have his spleen removed or he would die of enemia and jaundice. Interestingly, he ended up being sent to Los Angeles to have his spleen removed, but later discovered that his referring physician and surgeon had illegally collaborated with U.C.L.A. medical research department and a pharmaceutical company in California to use his spleen for the same pharmaceutical drug development research as my spleen was used for without my knowledge or consent. The New York man hired an attorney and sued the doctors, U.C.L.A. dept. of medical research and the pharmaceutical company. The story made the New York Times and is on the internet. From 1977 to 1987, I had no idea I had been poisoned, but in 1988, I received an unsolicited phone call from a retired commercial airline pilot by the name of Sam Hardin in Rossmoor, Los Alamitos, Orange County, CA. Local Mormons who had been receiving information from Mormons in Ventura, knew that I had been poisoned and knew who did it and what damage the chemical had done to my body. They had been trying to befriend me and convert me, but without telling me what they had known since 1976. After they gave up trying to baptize me, they asked Sam Hardin to call me and tell me what to buy at the health food store to remove chlorinated hydrocarbons from my body. Later I discovered Sam Hardin had been a C.I.A. pilot during the Vietnam war and had gone to medical school after the war, having some knowledge of chlordane, heptachlor and P.C.B.’s. Then I was threatened not to investigate my past to try to find out who poisoned me or I would end up with an early funeral. This threat was told to my face by Sam Hardin’s friend Ray LeCompte of Rossmoor, Los Alamitos, Orange County, CA. I was told this after Mormons set my mother’s house on fire one night about midnight in June of 1990 while I was in Ventura trying to find out who had poisoned me in 1976. The arson fire killed my mother and was covered up by ex-Orange County Fire Dept. arson investigator Russ Jones. I tried to get the Orange County Sheriffs Dept. to investigate the fire and Russ Jones, but they refused. I submitted a certified copy of the lies in Russ Jone’s fire investigation report to Orange County District Attorney Mike Fell who prosecutes all arson cases in Orange County, but I never received any response. I contacted the F.B.I. office in Orange County, but was told they don’t get involved with such matters. I submitted typed documentation to the Orange County Grand jury, but was denied an investigation. In November of 2001, the last time I purchased food at the Albertson’s market which was located in the Rossmoor / Seal Beach shopping Center, the butcher’s girlfriend who worked as one of the cashiers, handed me two packages of Albertson’s hamburger meat which the butcher had tainted with chlordane. He and his girlfriend had obtained the chlordane from a bottle that had been stolen from my mother’s garage by the arsonist who had entered the house and set the fire while my mother was asleep. I had purchased the chlordane from Ralph Baker of Lakewood Nursury in 1988 after Sam Hardin had helped me discover I had been a toxic tort victim from 1976. Russ Jones of Orange County Fire Dept. found out I had obtained a bottle of chlordane and investigators or Mormons patiently waited for nine years for me to drive back to Ventura to try to find out who poisoned me. The Mormon family in Rossmoor who was instrumental in a two year effort to convert my brother and I, were the Ensley family. Mr. Ensley was a Chief Deputy Prosecutor for the city of Long Beach. Mrs. Ensley was an elementry school teacher in Los Alamitos. Jennifer Ensley was their eldest daughter and was physically and mentally gifted. The Hart family of Los Alamitos, were instrumental in trying to convert my brother by setting him up with their eldest daughter, Julie Hart who was 17 at the time my brother was 15. Ever since consuming a hamburger patty from one of two packages of Albertson’s hamburger meat handed to me for half price by the butcher’s girlfriend, I have suffered damage to my enire digestive system and have had 37 polyps removed from my colon. I have also suffered damage to my bladder, liver and, have had symptoms of liver, bladder, and brain cancer. The termite pesticide chlordane was originally created as a chemical weapon by the Nazi Germans of World War two. Velsicol Corporation of Texas began reproducing the German formula after the war and sold it as a commercial termite pesticide. After I ended up on Social Security Disability in 1986, the Environmental Protection Agency placed a nation wide ban on all sales of chlordane. The medical cover-up of what was done to me, continues to this day. By 2004, I was to learn that Orange County Fire Department had changed their name to The Orange County Fire Authority and Russ Jones had left to work as a fire investigator for the State of California. Gerry Ensley who’s father was a retired fire batallion chief with the City of Riverside Fire Department and was Lutheran, quit his job or was fired from the City Prosecutors Office of Long Beach after his boss, Head Prosecutor John Vanderlance had died of cancer.