You can reinstall your system without losing data if your /home is on a separate partition. You probably have a / partition (or root), a swap and then /home. If this is the case backup your data from the various folders in your /home folder - pictures, documents, music etc. In your file manager there will be an option to view hidden files. These are files with the prefix .filename. Put a . in front of a file name and you render it invisible. Backup your browser and email folders. You may want to rename them by spelling "dot" so you can see them on the backup medium! You may also want to save wallpaper from /usr/share/wallpaper if you have customized these.
Boot from your live disc, and pay attention to the partition/format process. You will use existing partitions. Don't change them. The default is to format just the / partition and not /home. Make sure the /home partition is unchecked. Then go ahead with the install. On reboot enter your root password and the same user details from before. This should launch you into a familiar session.
Be aware of course that you now only have a base install - any extra software you had installed is now gone. However the .files and.folders in your home folder still have the preferences etc, so when you reinstall software, for eg. Inkscape, all its added brushes and plugins will still be there. The same applies to Firefox and Thunderbird, or what ever apps you use for that - bookmarks, emails and network settings should just work. You may need to readjust your monitor resolution though.
Good luck, and just keep an eye on the format checkboxes. If you think it wasn't right, you can just cancel the install and restart the process.