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Thread: Allergic to Cedar?

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    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    Default Allergic to Cedar?

    Anybody ever heard of somebody that couldn't live in a cedar home?
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    yes i have, some cedars are so pungent that the allergies of some people can not with stand it.
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    The only known cure is to sign the home over to me, I can save you, but act quickly.
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    Member power drifter's Avatar
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    Default wood alleriges?

    I am a woodworker and know that there are many woods that may not be good to work with, but that's when cutting and sanding. I would think that if you sealed it in a finish it should not be a problem. What is happening to make one think its the cedar?

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    Default Cedar poisoning

    I know some loggers in SE that have cedar poisoning, but they get it on their hands and arms. My Dad had it on his hands and it would get worse when wearing wet gloves while cutting cedar. It would cause small blisters, redness and dry skin. The Doc called it contact dematitis caused by the plicatic acid in the wood. I heard that shake splitters sometimes would get respiratory problems from working around the cedar dust. I suppose if the wood in the house was sealed, it wouldn't cause a problem, but who knows...

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    My wife is sensitive to cedar. Causes her asthma to act up. There is no way we could live in a house that had a lot of cedar in it, sealed or not.

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    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    Yep. I am. It's just a mild allergy, but it makes my nose run and makes me sneeze.

    One of my customers lived in a cedar house for years in S.E. and she had no idea that it was cedar allergies that was causing her allergies until she moved out.
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    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    I just heard it from someone that used to live in Kenai. I just might have to experiment on my family before building with it. I wonder if it is only red cedar or only yellow cedar as they are not really both from the same family. Have to look at my dendrology books.
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    Gull,

    People can have reactions to both of our local cedar species (WRC & AYC) so it's worth checking before you commit to building with one or the other. Probably more of an issue if you plan on having the cedar in the interior of the house as opposed to just the exterior siding.

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    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    Here is a good worker safety write up.

    This is focused on worker safety since most folks that developed an issue were working with red cedar in a mill or wood shop. For most people there needs to be a constant exposure to wood dust that creates the allergic reaction. If you seal the wood there will be little cedar dust created during normal house hold activities.

    If your family is going to build the home I might be conserned. If they are only going to be living in it I would not be concerned very much.

    If you have people in your family that are allergic to most anything in the environment or have asthma I would have them tested specifically for a reaction to the compounds that cause the allergy. Since most of these cases require chronic exposure and not acute exposure they propbly won't react.

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    Default cedar allergy

    Quote Originally Posted by AK Ray View Post
    Here is a good worker safety write up.

    This is focused on worker safety since most folks that developed an issue were working with red cedar in a mill or wood shop. For most people there needs to be a constant exposure to wood dust that creates the allergic reaction. If you seal the wood there will be little cedar dust created during normal house hold activities.

    If your family is going to build the home I might be conserned. If they are only going to be living in it I would not be concerned very much.

    If you have people in your family that are allergic to most anything in the environment or have asthma I would have them tested specifically for a reaction to the compounds that cause the allergy. Since most of these cases require chronic exposure and not acute exposure they propbly won't react.

    I have a chronic allergy to cedar; even if it is treated or sealed....I was always very ill in my house with yellow cedar and beam ceilings. I could no longer work and I just felt terrible all the time along with lung issues etc.....after I left that home, I started to feel much better.
    I have heard of this from other people as well with cedar sensativities....

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    With all the cedar pollen you are getting in Petersburg you would probably already see the effects.
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    Yes, I remember an old woodworker friend of mine told me cedar dust would really tear him up. Said he HAD to wear a mask when sawing or planing it now. Doesn't bother me unless I run a bunch of it and forget to wear a mask. I do remember Teak doing a job on my nose that's for sure....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coaldust View Post
    I know some loggers in SE that have cedar poisoning, but they get it on their hands and arms. My Dad had it on his hands and it would get worse when wearing wet gloves while cutting cedar. It would cause small blisters, redness and dry skin. The Doc called it contact dematitis caused by the plicatic acid in the wood. I heard that shake splitters sometimes would get respiratory problems from working around the cedar dust. I suppose if the wood in the house was sealed, it wouldn't cause a problem, but who knows...
    Growing up, I had friend who's Father was a cedar shingle weaver in a mill. He actually could only work by continually using an inhaler

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