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Updated 27 March 2014

Sick building syndrome

When Mia started getting headaches at work, she put it down to new-job stress, especially as the symptoms eased whenever she left the building.

Mia felt fortunate to land a salaried job at the publishing firm for which she’d been freelancing from home. When she started getting headaches at work, she put it down to new-job stress – especially as the symptoms eased whenever she left the building.

What is sick building syndrome?
This is the name given to the phenomenon when people who regularly occupy a building (like office workers) experience various troublesome symptoms, mainly when they spend time there. The symptoms tend to be flu- or allergy-like, and may include headaches, burning or itching eyes, stuffy nose, sneezing, coughing, sore throat, tight chest, dry or itchy skin, dizziness, difficulty concentrating, nausea and fatigue. People prone to asthma or allergies may find that their usual symptoms worsen while they're in the suspect building.

 
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