PANS and PANDAS are neuroimmune illnesses that are near and dear to my heart because we have seen firsthand the devastating effects they can have on children and their families. I became interested in these conditions years ago, after learning that children exposed to toxic mold in water-damaged buildings can go on to develop PANS and other neurological and neuroimmune conditions. 

What many fail to realize is that the toxins inside of water-damaged buildings can work synergistically and cause serious damage to inhabitants, especially to children.

I’ve said this for over a decade and I’ll keep saying it until I die. If you are feeling sick or your child is experiencing strange and debilitating symptoms, and there seems to be no concrete explanation, always rule out your environment, because it could be the culprit. 

None of the Doctors I saw in the earlier years of my health decline asked about my environment or even considered it could be the cause of my worsening symptoms. We need to do better for ourselves and for our children.

I never knew that prolonged exposure to toxic mold could injure my health. Prior to working in a sick building, I had perfect health, but that all changed real quick.

Always pay attention if your children start to display new symptoms out of nowhere. Symptoms for a mold-injured brain can be as simple as feeling tired and irritable. They can also include feeling fatigued, dizzy, foggy thinking, memory loss, learning regression, rage episodes, depression, frequent urination, constant respiratory infections, sleep issues, food restriction, rashes, vision loss, headaches, and more. Pay attention if these symptoms occur or get worse when you are at home, school, or at work. It is extremely important to always rule out your environment.

If you’d like to hear a little about my story and about how dangerous it is to live or work in a moldy building, check out this podcast I did and be sure to share it with others so that we can raise awareness and help people who may be suffering without knowing that it’s their environment making them sick. 💛 To read about how mold and mycotoxins can affect the body click here. 

Below I’ve listed a few resources and links that may be helpful to you if you are caring for someone with one of these illnesses.

What is PANS? “PANS & PANDAS are two similar conditions related to neuropsychiatric changes in children, due to toxic and infectious triggers. PANS stands for Pediatric Acute Neuropsychiatric Syndrome, while PANDAS stands for Pediatric Acute Neuropsyhciatric Disorders Associated with Strep. One of the main differences between PANS & PANDAS is that the etiology for PANDAS has been established as Group A Streptococcal (GAS) infections since the 1990s. PANS, which was only coined in 2012 (1), denotes PANDAS-like cases where strep could not be implicated as the cause of symptoms, and often another causal microbe or toxin was detected, such as Bartonella (2), Epstein-Barr virus, Mycoplasma Pneumoniae, Lyme disease (though less often),  Varicella Zoster (aka chicken pox), Influenza A, and even the common cold (3). There can even be environmental triggers in PANS/PANDAS such as mold exposure, chemicals, or heavy metals.” Source

Online Resources & Information for Parents
Mold as a trigger for PANS – One Families Story

ASPIRE: The Alliance to Solve PANS and Immune-Related Encephalopathies

Dr. Jaban Moore

Healthy Kids Happy Kids

New England Pans/Pandas Association

Northwest PANDAS/PANS Network

P.A.N.D.A.S. Network

Pandas Physicians Network – PPN

The Foundation for Children with Neuroimmune Disorders

PANDAS and PANS in School Settings by Patricia Rice Doran

A Heart For All Students 

Documentary: My Child Is Not Crazy (Language warning)

PANS and PANDAS with Dr. Anju Usman Singh, MD
“In this episode, you will learn about PANS and PANDAS and approaches for supporting children impacted by these conditions.”

Books for Parents:
-Childhood Interrupted: The Complete Guide to PANDAS and PANS by Beth Alison Maloney
-Brain Under Attack: A Resource for Parents and Caregivers of Children with PANS, PANDAS and Autoimmune Encephalitis by Beth Lambert, Maria Rickert Hong, Roseann Capanna-Hodge, Jennifer Glustra-Kozek, Lauren Stone

Books for Kids:
-What To Do When Your Brain Gets Stuck by Dawn Huebner, PhD
-In a Pickle Over PANDAS by Melanie S. Weiss
-What To Do When You Worry Too Much by Dawn Huebner, PhD