As part of our series on following up with those who did brain retraining programs for MCS, EHS, CFS/ME, FMS, mold, chronic lyme and other conditions, we wanted to share “before and after” snapshots of survey respondents so you can see the range of what is possible as far as recovery goes. We encourage you to read through them all. Many of them are recounting absolute miracles — the potential for a daily practice to completely transform our health + lives. In some cases brain retraining did not work but other modalities did, and we’ve included those shares here, too. Our goal is to give people hope for recovery, we truly believe that some amount of improvement is possible for everyone.
QUESTION: What was life like for you at your worst with MCS and related conditions? How has life changed for you since then — what are some of the big gains and improvements you’ve experienced?
Life was extremely limited with ME/CFS. At my worst I was couch-bound and isolated. I am now active, am able to travel, go hiking, practice my violin, pretty much do whatever I want to. And keep up with housework easily. – Diane, Connecticut (ANS Rewire for CFS/ME + POTS)
I was suicidal. After practicing FasterEFT for a month I was able to go back to work after leaving work for two and a half years. Now I am free to go anywhere and travel to places. My health is better than before having MCS. – Vera, Ontario, Canada (FasterEFT for MCS)
I was a very severe CFS patient. I was bedridden for a couple of years completely. Even if I had to visit the restroom I had to have somebody bring me in a wheelchair. I couldn’t really bathe, so we had to hire somebody to help me. After those couple of years bedridden I slowly gained mobility as I did the brain retraining. I went from being fully bedridden to having a pretty complete life. I think I became ill around November 2013. It took me about 4 years to be somewhat normal. Now almost five years since becoming sick with CFS I work (although part-time because mornings are still hard), I go to the gym, I moved in with my boyfriend and we got engaged. I go on vacations. Life is pretty normal, I just sometimes feel tired or worn out and like I said, waking up in the morning is a little bit hard. – Linda, Illinois (Gupta for CFS)
I used to not be able to use a cell phone, be in any space with Wi-Fi and it meant I couldn’t work. But I am now back to work every day (which is a miracle) and can enter coffee shops with Wi-Fi and use my cell phone daily. I no longer have basically any EMF sensitivities. I still take some precautions at home just because I want to, but do not have to worry when I am out and about. – Patrick, California (DNRS for EHS, lymphedema)
It came on suddenly. Suddenly I was sick from what seemed like all things. I was frightened and confused. At worst I was unable to be anywhere there were odors. I was seen in the emergency room for fume inhalation. I had high blood pressure and heart palpitations. I was unable to wear fabrics, smell newsprint without getting sick, anything with chemicals made me ill. I developed allergies suddenly to dogs, cats, flowers, had a burning red face, nose bleeds, itchy rashes, electrical shock sensations everywhere on my body, suicidal thoughts, and eventually homelessness. I had little support from family or mainstream medical. After the brain retraining, my brain got rewired to having a normal reaction to odors. I was able to go back to work. I am no longer bothered by smells unless I get a heavy dose of diesel fumes which I notice it affecting me a little but I don’t freak out. – Bunny, Washington (DNRS for MCS)
I was severely depressed. I did not have enough quality of life to continue living. I saw my father twice in 14 years. I lived in a very sterile home environment. After completing brain retraining, I got married! I live in a home with furniture, a TV, a bed, air conditioning. I have a cat and plants. I can visit my relatives and travel, which is my biggest enjoyment in life. – Ellen, Arizona (DNRS for MCS, EHS)
I was completely disabled. I needed home help to do things like grocery shopping, making food, laundry, etc. Most of the day was spent in bed; I had difficulty walking and moving normally, subject to seizing, tremors, twitching; intense brain fog and memory problems, always in pain. Intense sensory overwhelm. Sometimes I was unable to speak very effectively. I walked slowly with a cane. I was unable to drive. I wore a charcoal mask in public. Sometimes I was homeless due to an inability to find suitable housing for my condition. There was a lack of understanding and support from family and community. I was always in trauma. After brain retraining, I am able to drive and travel cross-country on my own. I never wear a mask to go in public anymore. I am able to work part-time and have a social life and community. I have been able to live with housemates with a few adaptations to make it a healthy home. I am able to garden, and to dance and swim regularly. I am able to juggle a more full and complex life. I am able to go on group camping trips – I camped at a music festival this year, with cigarette smoke, loud noise all night, lots of people, and had a lot of fun! – Ilex, Colorado (Gupta + DNRS for MCS, EHS, lyme, mold)
I was a 24/7 universal reactor, I couldn’t go to anyplace with people without wearing a contractor’s respirator. I travel now and ask minimal questions of Airbnb’s etc, only limited to some degree by molds and the strongest perfumes. – Laurie, California (DNRS + Gupta or MCS, mold)
Emotionally, physically, and spiritually excruciating. Time stood still for many years. I was a Universal Reactor – reactive to just about everything from chemicals, to organic cotton/wool/silk, foods, mold, sounds, vibrations, EMFs, the sun, people’s energy and more. I could barely wear clothing and had to go through hours and hours of laborious hand washing to prepare any new clothes for wearing. I couldn’t tolerate a mattress or any bedding except for a dirty pillow for many years – slept on hard wood, concrete and tile, wrapped around a glass bottle filled with hot water for heat. Extremely restricted diet for many, many years. Constant rashes on my face, purple lips from sun exposure. Could feel vibrations and sounds from far away. Nervous system constantly felt like it was being squeezed in a vise. Severe foot cramps, constant diarrhea, cognitive reactions, 7 day migraines, too many physical symptoms to list. Also severe emotional lability, unable to control my emotions, suicidal half of the time with weeping episodes all day long and also raging from chemical exposures. After brain retraining, I can sleep on a mattress with blankets, use heat, wear clothing, eat in restaurants, and go out in public again. My daily comfort level is exponentially improved. I do live very clean still, choosing organic foods, clothing + bedding, keeping my home non-toxic, and avoiding moldy and highly fragranced buildings. Not cured, (and other serious health issues came up right after the improvements from brain retraining) but life has improved considerably. – Julie, (DNRS, Gupta, EFT, FasterEFT for MCS, EHS, mold, lyme)
I was homebound, having horrible anxiety and breakdowns due to any exposure and other’s disbelief of my symptoms. That on top of the medical issues of migraines, vertigo, and nausea, and tasting every ‘chemical’ in my mouth, burning my nose and eyes, and causing coughing. Now, my tolerance of chemicals has increased. I still can’t go back to the old person I was but I can go out in public and rarely have to leave or move to another area if someone has perfume on for instance. – Tonya, Florida (DNRS for MCS)
Oh, wow. Things were really, really bad: terrible isolation, migraines 80% of the time; living with people thinking I was crazy, rather than sick; couldn’t work; was homeless once for 14 months, during which time I kept renting homes and losing my deposit when I’d have to move out again a day or a week later, finally ran completely out of money and just lived in my van for months until I finally found a “clean” enough house–and a kind friend helped me make rent at first. I couldn’t access medical care during a couple of very scary episodes – because it would just have made me worse. I would get terribly sick for a week just from from trying to do something as simple as go to the DMV to register a vehicle, or go to the dentist. But now — woohoooo! I recently started dating someone, and didn’t even mention MCS to him until a couple of months in, and not due to any necessity or need for accommodation, but just as a historical thing, when we were telling each other about our life history, to explain where that 15 years of my professional life went (and how an oceanographer came to dwell in the high desert of central Oregon). I can now go to stores, travel, stay in other people’s homes, or in a hotel room without even thinking about what the fragrance situation will be. I can go to concerts, lectures, museums, parties, weddings… just go where I want to go; I don’t even think about it when making plans. Can run errands all day, and still feel like doing something fun that night. Life is so, so, so much easier, more connected, more joyful, more fun…and so much simpler (even though I’m doing more and taking on more commitments). – Leslie, Oregon (DNRS for MCS)
Purgatory. Now I have my life back. I was able to go to my best friend ‘s wedding in Portugal with my Mom last year! – Sati, South Carolina (DNRS for MCS, EHS)
Bad. Really bad. I recently watched a Netflix show about people in solitary confinement in prison and it was sort of like that – crazy making. I went from teaching full time and living a semi normal life (I have always had asthma, allergies, etc.) to having nosebleeds, throat swelling, losing 20 pounds, losing my hair, losing my ability to use gas for heat or cooking, etc. with minor exposures to new appliances, gas, perfumes, etc. I felt terrible and couldn’t think. I hurt and developed severe fasciculations, which later let a doctor tell me I probably had ALS. I couldn’t parent or be a wife. I couldn’t work. After not working for a year, I slowly become less sensitive. I now work full time, can shop, can go out and about, can tolerate perfume (but get asthma), etc. I’m still tired and have autoimmune stuff. – Julie, California (DNRS + Gupta for MCS)
Awful. I had lost nearly all hope. I did not see a way out. I was sick all the time and things progressively got worse. I struggled by myself greatly and thought it was just a matter of time before I lost my job, my house, friends, family, etc. Now, I can travel including on airplanes, buses, etc. I work in a crowded office again, but still get to work at home several days a week. I can visit friends and relatives on holidays and at other times. I don’t think twice about shopping, going to the doctor, etc. I am basically more social again. – Jeff, Texas (DNRS, then Gupta + Psych-K for MCS)
I couldn’t buy new clothing or decor items (drapery, rugs, etc) for my home. I wasn’t able to do renovations or repairs inside the house. I couldn’t replace aging or broken electronics. I was very anxious and fearful of going into others’ homes and into some stores. As a result, I was depressed a lot of the time and was starting to become isolated. Since doing brain retraining, my anxiety has 90% disappeared, my depression is gone. I have been able to purchase and use a new iPad and a new television. I’ve had some renovations done in my home (using 0 or very low VOC materials) and no longer have problems with new clothing and most material decor items. I’m able to eat some foods I couldn’t before. I didn’t even realize they were food sensitivities, I thought they were a result of some surgery I’d had! I’ve gained a lot of confidence and am much more willing to try new activities. I don’t worry about going into most stores or peoples’ home anymore. Some of these gains came with the DNRS program and others came with the Headspace meditation. – Caroline, Ontario, Canada (DNRS for MCS)
At first I was able to motivate myself to get out and do more things, but I never actually made any gains in terms of fatigue or stamina, so eventually I stopped challenging myself, because I just ended up crashing. At my worst I was housebound, unable to do household chores or walk more than a few blocks without severe pain and fatigue, used a wheelchair to go out, did no work or volunteer work. The improvement I’ve had since my worst came about entirely through doing the Buhner herbal protocol for Lyme in 2014-15. I did not see any improvement from doing brain retraining. Recently since starting DNRS I have gone on a trip for the first time in years, but I had to deal with severe fatigue and low stamina while on the trip. I do seem to be able to make some symptoms go away now and that is starting to initiate a positive feedback loop.– Lina, Arizona (Gupta + now DNRS for CFS, chronic lyme)
I rotated my food every 4 days. I was electrically sensitive, food sensitive, odor sensitive, EMF sensitive, sun exposure sensitive, etc. I lived in my home, in my basement, with the electricity turned off during the day and on only when I need heat. I did not drive, use a cell phone, had limited use of a home phone on speaker phone and had to be 4+ feet away from my computer monitor because of EMF. The computer was set 20 feet away from the monitor, mouse and keyboard that were run on long cords to my desk area. I still had symptoms from screen exposure and dealt with them while I was searching for a cure. I went from being stuck in a hole to being virtually NORMAL. If I continued to do the program I believe I would be 100%. The truth is that when I start to have symptoms come back I start to use the learned skills and retrain the amygdala. Works EVERY TIME. – Paul, New York (Gupta for EHS, MCS)
I was almost totally home bound. Sometimes bed bound. This was for quite a few years. I lost all my friends and even my marriage. Everyone abandoned me. Now I am working and repairing relationships and starting new ones. – Robin, New Mexico (Gupta + DNRS for MCS)
Hell. I was suicidal. After doing the program, I feel as if I’ve taken a bomb to my previous life. I have never been so content. – SeaCrone, Florida (DNRS for Lyme, MCS, CFS)
For most of fourteen years, I was nearly totally homebound, sometimes bedbound. There were only about ten foods I could eat without breaking out into hives or having other allergic reactions, and we were making frequent trips to the emergency room. I’d given up on finding help from my doctors and had to do my research myself. With a hospital grade air cleaner, water filtration system, elimination of natural gas appliances, and scrupulous care in my eating, I was able to be fairly safe in my own home when the air quality outside was good, but couldn’t go to public places, family events, stores, or anywhere else where I might be exposed to a chemical that I was reactive to. Even to go to the medical center a couple of miles away, I had to wear a mask. Now I can actually go to stores and shopping centers — even the hardware store and the detergent aisle, most church activities (the perfumes on Sunday mornings are still too much for my lungs), travel on the interstate (I used to be immediately reactive to diesel exhaust, which turned me blue and sent me into shock), and basically live a much more normal life, though I still try to avoid chemical toxicity as much as possible. It’s lovely going through life without passing out and frequent trips to the ER! My life is so much better, and my husband and children have a great deal more freedom now that they don’t have to take care of or worry about me all of the time. Six months after my 2017 retraining with the DNRS DVDs, my husband (who was used to never being more than 10 minutes away from me if I didn’t have someone else for emergency ER trips) was able to take a two week trip with our son driving across the country. We couldn’t even have imagined that type of freedom in the previous 14 years since the herbicide exposure that had triggered my severe MCS. – Heather, Wisconsin (DNRS for MCS)
When I was at my worst, I basically did next to nothing except the bare minimum to survive, I didn’t work, I barely used any electronic devices (phone, computer, etc.), avoided all scents, didn’t drive, didn’t socialize, etc.. Now, I don’t have EMF sensitivity at all for several years now, my MCS is vastly decreased though I still have it, the MCS is no longer bad enough to get in the way that much except where heavy chemicals are present things like hardware stores, or if a room is being painted and so on, but the amounts in most environments is not much of an issue and I dedicate almost no time thinking about it except the occasional flashback recall of having had it that quickly goes away. – Radfaraf (FasterEFT for MCS, EHS, CPTSD)
Utter and total shit. A nightmare, like so many others have experienced. Refugee living in my yard, then my car, then sleeping outside in open air in various campgrounds across the southwest. Wondering if I’d lose my job or ever feel good or be able to re-join society again. It was life-wrecking. And I know, sadly, that that is a pretty typical experience for us delicate flowers! Now, my life is somewhat ‘normal’. I can mostly do what I want, taking care to rest a bunch and take downtime after I’ve been around a lot of mold. When I stay away from mold, though, I do feel fantastic. Maybe the best ever. And my brain is more creative, alert, I’m excelling at work more than ever. An outside person wouldn’t know about my issues. But as I said, there is still some degree of management for mold. – Sarah, Oregon (DNRS for MCS, mold)
At my lowest point I was unable to drive, had difficulty with cognition, walking, coordination, vision disturbances, balance, severe insomnia, severe weight loss, severe digestion issues, severe anxiety and severe depression. I was unable to work and I was on full disability. I was diagnosed to have CFS and Fribromyalgia after extensive testing at Stanford Medical in northern California. Now, I am able to function fully. I feel better now than I can ever remember. I am 51 years old and I feel better, in some ways, than I did since my 20’s. I am able to do things with my family, work, food shop, cook, play tennis, exercise etc. My sleeping is good and this is the first time I have been able to sleep through the night in over 14 years. I am no longer bloated after I eat and the food sensitivities I encountered are no longer an issue. I am able to feel good in both my body and my mind. – Peter, California (ANS Rewire for CFS/ME + FMS)
At my worst with CFS, I slept 23.5 hours a day and was incoherent after being awake for 15 minutes. I couldn’t understand much of what I heard or tried to read, in the times when I was awake more. I crawled to the bathroom and had my parents take me to their home to live. That was in my house with hidden mold. After leaving there, the MCS developed. Every breath created stabbing brain pain. I was short of breath with a pounding heart and a physical feeling of frozen anxiety 24/7. Constant head pressure and pain for years. Skin, airways, eyes, and urinary tract burned. My breathing, swallowing, GI tract, arms, and legs became semi paralyzed. I was in bed all day though I could walk on my own if needed. I went to doctors and grocery stores with great difficulty and crashes that lasted 4 days afterwards. I was in constant fear and could not connect with others socially. My entire life was mold, chemicals, symptoms, and anger over not being believed or helped. I would also go into fits of crying and rage from chemical exposures, and would have difficulty understanding things like what my shopping list meant and what I was supposed to do with it. I could not trust that I would be able to get myself home when I went out in public. I can now go anywhere without fear of a huge crash. Odors are slightly annoying but not painful and only cause minor symptoms. I am going to concerts again and flying on my own. I can handle the heat better than most healthy people I know. – Jeny, Texas (Gupta + DNRS for MCS, CFS, FMS, EHS, mold)
Brain retraining revisited: A follow-up survey
How long before you see results from brain retraining?
How brain retraining changes lives
The challenges of brain retraining
Advice from brain retrainers
Would you recommend brain retraining to others?
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