Sneezing And Nasal Congestion
While many things can trigger sneezing, its also a symptom of mold toxicity that should get your attention. If youve never had allergies or hay fever symptoms and youre positive you dont have a cold, those sneezes could be indicative of mold exposure.
Sneezing is the immune systems standard response to allergens. It could also be a warning sign that your home has a mold problem.
What Are The Worst Seasons For Mold
Seasonally, mold is most common from early spring through middle fall. During this time, the temperature and humidity levels are right for mold growth across most of the country.
While mold is often thought of as the problem, its actually a symptom of a water source. Look for signs of excess moisture in your home during the winter thaw, spring showers and humid summer months.
How Does Mold Grow So Quickly Indoors
Mold is quite easily satisfied when it comes to conditions for growth. You can say theyre one of the least picky organisms. Yes, mold requires water, but thats not its only sustenance. Oh, if only it were.
Mold will feed on anything at all with cellulose in it, and unfortunately, theres cellulose in almost everything, your carpets, your clothing and other fabric, wood, you just name it. This is one reason why most basements are rife with mold. Basements are moist, and also full of old junk like ruined clothes and ancient carpets. Its no wonder the mold have a field day.
Mold can even start to grow inside your walls, or your foundation. This is a worse situation since you would not realize there is a mold problem until it is well spread. This is when to consider mold removal professionals.
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Which Foods Can Be Contaminated With Mold
Mold can grow on almost all foods.
That said, some types of food are more prone to mold growth than others.
Fresh food with a high water content is particularly vulnerable. On the other hand, preservatives decrease the likelihood of mold growth, as well as the growth of microorganisms .
Mold does not only grow in your food at home. It can grow during the food production process too, including throughout growing, harvesting, storage or processing (
Body Reaction To Mold Smell
Mold smell in itself is not always dangerousexcept for some mold that produces mycotoxin. However, if you smell mold odor, most likely the spore is present in the air as well. The spore is more hazardous for health compared to the smell.
Some people also develop hypersensitivity to mold smell. They may experience dizziness, watery eyes, or sneezing.
It is possible for people whose house infested with mold to feel better when outside their home without knowing that mold is the cause.
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Mold Is Used To Make Certain Foods
Mold is not always undesirable in food.
Penicillium is a genus of molds used in the production of many types of cheese, including blue cheese, Gorgonzola, brie and Camembert (
Other safe molds are koji molds, including Aspergillus oryzae, which are used to ferment soybeans to make soy sauce. They are also used to make vinegar, as well as fermented beverages, including the Japanese drink sake .
Its important to note that even though some molds are added to particular foods during production to achieve certain effects, the same molds can still spoil other products.
For example, Penicillium roqueforti is used to make blue cheese, but it will cause spoilage if it grows in fresh or grated cheese .
Summary: Food companies use particular molds to make cheese, soy sauce, vinegar and fermented beverages. These molds are safe to eat, as long as they are consumed as part of the foods they were intended for and dont contaminate other foods.
How To Remove Black Mold Yourself
Did you know that its often possible to remove black mold yourself? Its true! Professional mold remediation can cost thousands of dollars and is often excluded from many homeowners insurance policies. But in many instances hiring a mold removal professional isnt necessary and black mold can be removed by a handy homeowner in less than one weekend of work.
If you feel like you may be a homeowner who is up to the challenge, weve written an eBook that gives step-by-step instructions on how to tackle your mold problem. For less than $20, we guarantee that youll save hundreds, if not thousands, of your hard-earned dollars.
You can purchase our eBook here:
And if youre not comfortable tackling the problem yourself, were happy to provide you a quote if youre in our service area. Just contact us for a completely free quote.
Bottom Line: No mold belongs in a healthy home. Be it black mold, or any other color of mold. It should all be treated the same. If you have mold, remove it.
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Keep It Clean And Dry
It never hurts to clean regularly. Make sure humid areas and rooms with plumbing get regular spot checks. Add mold and mildew removal products to your cleaning routine, especially for the bathroom and kitchen.
Mold thrives on moisture, so use dehumidifiers in humid areas of your home like bathrooms, basements, or closets.
What Does Mold Smell Like
Mold has an odor that can be described as wet and musty. The foul odor can resemble the smell of decaying food or garbage.
Keep in mind that mold can often look different and smell a little different depending what type of mold and what type of surface it is growing on.
But think back to your high school locker room after gym class.
Remember that horrible combination of stinky socks, sweaty people and just overall yuckyness? That’s another synonym for what mold can smell like.
Here are two easy ways to get a more exact idea of what mold smells like:
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Watery Or Irritated Eyes
When allergens are present, the body releases histamines as part of its immune response. This histamine release is what causes the eyes to water excessively when exposed to toxins from mold.
This reaction from histamine may be the bodys way of flushing out allergens and toxins. It can serve as a warning to you that your environment may contain dangerous black mold.
At What Humidity Does Mold Die
One way of controlling mold growth is maintaining proper humidity levels in your home. The volume of moisture in one cubic meter of air differs as a function of the air temperature. In other words, warm air absorbs moisture more than cold air. The ideal relative humidity inside your home is anywhere between 30% and 50% if you want to prevent mold.
Using exhaust fans in bathrooms and kitchens where steam tends to accumulate from cooking and showering, improving ventilation, and investing in a dehumidifier are all simple ways of keeping relative humidity low. Open widows frequently to allow for sufficient air exchange, but close them when it rains to avoid moisture intrusion and condensation.
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How To Prevent Mold And Mildew
The most efficient way to prevent mold and mildew in your home is to keep all the areas dry and moisture-free. Maintain a humidity level of about 40-50% inside the house , have your heating and cooling systems regularly inspected, keep air ducts clean and in good condition, ensure good air circulation inside the premises, fix any leaks in the bathroom, kitchen or other areas, etc. Remove any mildew-affected plants and weeds as soon as you notice them in order to prevent mildew infestation.
What Kills Black Mold On Drywall
There are ways to kill black mold or any kind of mold on your drywall. If you live in tropical areas, you have both the advantage and disadvantage. Thanks to the sunlight, you have a natural way to kill black mold so it does not return home easily. This is why your parent always suggests that you open your bedroom window every morning.
When the temperature rises in tropical areas, the level of humidity also rises. This is why you have to do a regular check on certain areas around your house. Once you spot even a small blob of dark-looking mold, do not just take it for granted. Start cleaning up right away.
Besides regular cleaning, make sure that you always have the bleaching products handy. Bleach always works wonders as a disinfectant, so it makes any kind of mold go away. Other materials that work wonders to get rid of the mold besides bleach include:
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Mycotoxins May Be Present In Several Foods
Mycotoxins may be found in food due to contaminated crops.
In fact, mycotoxin contamination is a common problem in the agricultural industry, as mycotoxins are produced by mold in nature. Up to 25% of the worlds grain crops may be contaminated with mycotoxins .
Different types of crops can become contaminated, including corn, oats, rice, nuts, spices, fruits and vegetables.
Several factors influence the formation of mycotoxins. For instance, droughts weaken plants, making them more susceptible to damage and infestation (
In a report from the European Food Safety Authority , 26% of 40,000 samples of various food items contained mycotoxins. However, the number of samples that exceeded the safe upper limit was very low for most items .
The highest levels were found in pistachios and Brazil nuts.
More than 21% of the Brazil nuts and 19% of the pistachios tested exceeded the maximum safety limit and would not enter the market. In comparison, none of the baby foods and only 0.6% of corn exceeded the safety limit .
Since mycotoxin formation cannot be completely prevented, the food industry has established methods of monitoring it. The levels of mycotoxins in foods are strictly regulated in about 100 countries .
While you are exposed to small amounts of these toxins through your diet, the levels do not exceed the safe limits. If you are a healthy individual, they probably wont harm you. Unfortunately, it is impossible to avoid exposure altogether.
What To Do If You Have Mold
If youve realized that mold has definitely formed in your home, you want to get rid of it as soon as possible. Mold can be quite dangerous, so take action right away. So what options are at your disposal?
Sadly, theyre pretty limited. There are some chemicals you can use to get rid of mold, but their effectiveness is questionable.
Chlorine bleach is the strongest, but also the most dangerous option. It does a good job at removing mold and reducing discoloration, but not in all cases. Sometimes, you dont notice mold for a long time because its in the areas you dont visit frequently. If this happens, and theres a lot of mold that has built up, bleach might not be very effective.
Hydrogen peroxide is another good solution for killing mold that is still forming and hasnt spread a lot. Its a lot less harsh than bleach, but its also less effective and might take longer to work.
If you encounter mold, your safest bet is calling a professional to deal with it, especially if you havent encountered it before. Experimenting with chemicals isnt the best idea, as it can not only be ineffective, but also quite dangerous.
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What Happens To Mold When It Dries Out
Mold spores become inactive temporarily after they have dried out but can remain a threat as long as they are present in the environment. It can cause allergic reactions and uncomfortable symptoms such as skin rashes, runny nose, itchy eyes, coughing, and sneezing. This usually occurs even if the mold spores are inactive because they can easily become airborne when blown around with the air circulating in and out of the house. Once they become airborne, they can move from one place to another and may end up settling in an area with all the necessary conditions for their growth. Mold requires moisture to grow but can remain inactive for a while until it is exposed to moisture or high levels of humidity.
Without constant moisture, mold will become inactive but they never die unless you get rid of them completely. They can always come back to life in the presence of moisture and multiply rapidly causing serious health problems. Some types of mold spores can remain in their passive state for several years under the right circumstances. It is not enough to eliminate moisture when you have an active mold problem in your home, as it will still find a way to multiply once again. The best way to get rid of recurring mold is to eliminate any contaminated materials and perform a remediation procedure to ensure they never grow back.
Black Mold On The Drywall In The Basement
How do we get rid of the black mold on the drywall in the basement, since the basement is located underground where it can be damp and moist, especially during summer or if you live in a tropical area?
These are the tools you need to remove the black mold on the drywall in your basement:
This is how the process goes:
After fixing the pipe, you can start removing the mold with the materials you have. Close the doors so the mold will not travel to other rooms. Once you finish removing, leave the drywall and open the windows while turning on the fans to air the basement.
If you cannot fix the leaking pipes yourself, call the plumber.
Wearing rubber gloves, goggles, and mask, you can start using the keyhole saw or knife to cut the affected surface. Dump the contaminated parts into a garbage disposal.
With a bucket of hot water and detergent, clean the affected area. Scrub it thoroughly and rinse it before you vacuum it to soak up the moisture. After that, use the bleach to disinfect the area.
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Water In The Foundation
Look out for a build-up of water around your homes base. This can lead to foundational problems for your home if there is a lot of water. At your homes foundation, gathering rainwater can be prevented by sloping your yard outwards from your foundation. In the same line of thought, damp basements are another culprit. Usually, there is no good ventilation in basements. This is an indication that basements could contain higher humidity or moisture amounts compared to other rooms in the home. Also, basements are often colder which means more condensation occurs which leads to humidity and basement.
Removing Mold From Books And Papers
Mold will eventually destroy paper, but it can be successfully removed. For expensive books and historically significant papers, consult a professional curator.
Never try to treat damp paper. The mold will smear and become nearly impossible to remove. Allow the paper in books to air dry thoroughly in the sun or place in a sealed container with moisture absorbent material like silica gel or cornstarch sprinkled between the pages.
When the book is dry, head outside and use a soft paintbrush or cloth to gently brush away the mildew from the cover and each page. Slide a sheet of waxed paper under each page to protect the page behind it. Slightly dampen a clean, soft cloth with hydrogen peroxide and gently wipe down each page, allowing it to air dry completely before moving to the next page.
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Mold In The Closet Heres How To Get Rid Of It For Good
Last Updated on January 25, 2021 by Diana Rodriguez-Zaba
A hacking cough, chronic fatigue, and red, itchy eyes might be a sign of a hidden culprit: mold growing in your closet.
Toxic black mold thrives in dark, damp areas, releasing spores as it feeds on materials found in drywall, carpet, paper, cardboard, or fabric. Breathing in these spores can cause symptoms you might mistake for a respiratory infection or allergies.
More severe cases of mold poisoning can include nausea, vomiting, or bleeding in the lungs and nose.
Do you know how to remove mold in the closet?
Our certified ServiceMaster Chicago cleaning and restoration specialists have years of experience providing mold removal for area homeowners.
From attics to basements and even the cleanest closets, weve seen it all. We know why it happens, and we know how to prevent it too.
Lets get started.
Foods You Should Discard
If you find mold on these items, discard them :
- Soft fruits and vegetables: Such as strawberries, cucumbers and tomatoes.
- Soft cheese: Like cottage and cream cheese, as well as shredded, crumbled and sliced cheese. This also includes cheese that is made with mold but has been invaded by another mold that was not part of the manufacturing process.
- Bread and baked goods: Mold can easily grow below the surface.
- Cooked food: Includes casseroles, meat, pasta and grains.
- Jam and jellies: If these products are moldy, they may contain mycotoxins.
- Peanut butter, legumes and nuts: Products processed without preservatives are at a higher risk of mold growth.
- Deli meats, bacon, hot dogs
- Yogurt and sour cream
Summary:Soft food with a high moisture content is generally more likely to have mold. You can cut mold off of hard or firm food.
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