Your House Smells Musty
Were not knocking your cleaning skills, but mold that grows undetected can pose a real health risk. This is especially true for the elderly, warns Dr. Parikh. Their symptoms are generally similar, but all chronic conditions are worse in the elderly as their bodies are not as resilient as younger patients and usually have other medical problems which may interfere with or complicate the treatment, says Dr. Parikh. Here are 9 ways to get rid of mildew.
Common Types Of House Mold
Wondering what types of mold are the most common in houses and which ones you should be concerned about? Lets discuss a few of the most common types of household mold now.
- Cladosporium Cladosporium is one of the most common household molds. It usually grows in a greenish-brown colony, but can also be nearly black in color. It is rarely harmful unless you have a mold allergy, but may cause minor issues like toenail or fingernail infections.
- Penicillium Penicillium is sometimes called green mold, as it is usually dark green in color. It tends to grow in large, consistent patches on the walls. As the name suggests, penicillin is derived from some kinds of this mold. However, some kinds of penicillium mold may be toxic to humans and animals.
- Aspergillus This type of mold is usually greenish-white in color, and may be more raised with a more cloudy appearance than other types of mold. It is not harmful, unless you have a weakened immune system, in which case it could infect the lungs or sinuses.
- Alternaria Alternaria mold is usually greenish-white, but can also appear in black patches, so its sometimes confused with black mold. Alternaria can be a factor in exacerbating asthma, particularly for those who may have mold allergies.
I Heard About Toxic Molds And Black Molds That Grow In Homes And Other Buildings Should I Be Concerned About A Serious Health Risk To Me And My Family
There is always a little mold everywhere in the air and on many surfaces.
Certain molds are toxigenic, meaning they can produce toxins . Hazards presented by molds that may produce mycotoxins should be considered the same as other common molds which can grow in your house. Not all fungi produce mycotoxins and even those that do will not do so under all surface or environmental conditions.
Mold growth, which often looks like spots, can be many different colors, and can smell musty. Color is not an indication of how dangerous a mold may be. Any mold should be removed and the moisture source that helped it grow should be removed.
There are very few reports that toxigenic molds found inside homes can cause unique or rare health conditions such as pulmonary hemorrhage or memory loss. These case reports are rare, and a causal link between the presence of the toxigenic mold and these conditions has not been proven.
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You Feel Like You Have A Cold That Just Wont Go Away
Symptoms of a mold reaction can be as subtle as a perpetually runny nose and sneezing fits. That cold that you just cant seem to shake could actually be a sneaky sign of a mold problem.
Try to notice if your symptoms seem to worsen after spending time in a particular room or immediately after you finish doing laundry in the basement, for example.
Warping Or Paint Peeling
Warping or paint peeling doesnt mean you have mold but its another sign of moisture. If the moisture doesnt dry up, mold will surely grow.
If you see warping or paint peeling you may have to remove a section of a wall to see whats happening within.
Once you find the cause, fix it and repaint or replace the warping.
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Additional Strategies To Find The Mold Source:
- The first place to start in any room is anywhere dust accumulates.This is often found on the HVAC registers. This is probably the best place to look because ventilation and moisture flow through it. Test using a swab to capture the dust. Focus on any dark or discolored dust for testing. You can also remove the register to determine if the ducts are dusty and if there are any leaks or areas where air is escaping or entering the ventilation flow. Aluminum tape can be used to seal these areas if they test positive or have visual defects.
- Ask yourself if any furnishings or furniture remained after remediation renovation. Carpet, curtains, and rugs are often the top suspects. It is important to note that most reputable remediators, when serving mold sensitive patients or when referred by a physician, will recommend topermanently remove everything from the house that can retain mold. This includes upholstered furniture, mattresses, and pillows. Washable bedding can be laundered with CitriSafe Laundry Liquid Detergent. You can either do a tap test on these items or a swab. Tap test are done by taking a mold test plate and tapping it several times on the surface of item tested. The tapping disturbs the microscopic spores in the mold and captures them when they become airborne. Mark the date, time, location, and item. This level of specificity is required to find the source and remove it. In some cases, the use of a hot liquid extraction carpet cleaner and HavenClean may suffice.
Finding The Source Of Mold
Today, I am writing about an ongoing dialog I am having with a mold suffering customer who has already invested significant finances in her home for remediation. This mold story happens all too often. She raises several questions all moldy home sufferers have to deal with. It can be painstakingly frustrating to find the mold problems. You can be living in a home with a mold issue or a moldy home. Read more about finding the source of mold.
I had severe skin problems and insomnia for some 8 years from the house I moved into in 2002. The skin rashes on my face started in 2006 and then slowly progressed to my neck, down my arms, down my back, on my butt and then down my legs.
I want to keep my home after spending $100K remodeling it, and while I had 4 areas that had been problems areas in the home . All have been remediated but still if I try to sleep in that bedroom, I find it hard to go to sleep and I start itching and my skin breaks out.
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How Does Mold Get Into Our Homes
The more people who live in a home, the more likely it is that molds will grow inside it. This is because we release a lot of moisture in the air when we breathe. When we take long hot showers, cook with uncovered pots, dry clothes on an indoor clothesline, or use humidifiers, we also make more moisture for molds to grow. Storing wet firewood, watering many plants, and storing many vegetables like potatoes and squash can make a mold problem more likely, too.
A House With A Mold Issue
There is a big difference between a house with a mold problem and a moldy house. To begin with, a house with a mold problem usually results from a specific leak or a moisture problem due to faulty appliances, pipes, or roof leaks. In these cases, the mold must be removed and remediated properly so that the mold is confined to the area being fixed by sealing the area and using an air scrubber.
A mold remediator should also inspect and test the entire home for moisture and mold throughout the house, indoors and out. If they do not, it should be a red flag and you should reconsider. To learn about Professional Mold Inspection and Expectations, click HERE. You can also effectively inspect your own house to finding a hidden mold with a few tools. You can read about DIY Mold Inspections HERE.
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Spotting And Fur On Your Walls
There are so many varieties of mold that you can’t really identify the type based on specific shape, size or color. It can appear as a furry, dark growth, as a black stain, or as black, white, orange, green or brown specks. Rather than look for out-of-the-ordinary, multi-colored flakes in every inch of your home, identify areas that are moist and then look for possible signs of mold. The fungus thrives in cool, damp areas, and it will be much easier to find it by limiting your search to areas that are affected by excess moisture. Yes, paint and wallpaper gets stained and marked from every day living, but if you see a pattern to the stains, or they appear in the corners of a room, this is usually a good indicator that mold is present.
First: Identify Where The Mold Is
Ways to test for mold vary depending on its location. A few ways to check for mold include:
After youve identified the location of the mold, there are two more steps you need to take: clean the mold and eliminate the moisture problem. It is commonly recommended that you wash down surfaces with a bleach solution to kill the mold.
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Primary Causes Of Mold
Mold will generally enter the home from the outdoors when the mold spores float through the air to the inside. When the spores enter the home through doorways, windows, cracks in the walls, vents, etc., they can reproduce quickly. Mold can grow not only on the walls, but can attach itself to many items around the house, including pets, clothing and shoes.
With the right conditions, such as moisture, water, dampness and cold, mold can grow and grow. Therefore, it can also enter the home via a leak in a pipe or roof or from flooding. This is why mold is found most often in kitchens, bathrooms and basements. Sometimes, mold can’t be seen, as it can also grow inside the insulation, wallpaper, drywall or carpet.
What Is Black Mold
Like other types of mold, black mold is commonly found in dark, humid areas of homes. It releases spores into the air that you can absorb through your skin or breathe in. These spores can also catch a ride from you to other areas, spreading it throughout your home.
Where black mold differs from other common household molds, however, is its reputation for being toxic. Many people refer to black mold simply as toxic mold. When left alone, black mold can cause serious health issues, especially for high-risk individuals.
The most common health issues from black mold are respiratory. You might experience coughing, sneezing or an itchy throat after prolonged exposure to black mold spores. People who are at higher risk, like infants or someone with existing respiratory issues, could experience long-term health consequences.
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The Paint Is Bubbling On Your Walls
Have you noticed that the paint is bubbling on the walls of your bathroom or near a window? One of the most common reasons paint begins to bubble is moisture. And where theres moisture, theres probably mold. You wont be able to cover up the problem with a fresh coat of paint you have to find the source of the moisture. It could be a leaky windowsill, too much humidity, or leaky plumbing. Once you fix the moisture issue, then you can repaint. Just make sure to scrape, patch, clean, and thoroughly dry the walls before rolling on the first coat. Watch out for these sneaky everyday objects you touch every day that can be toxic.
What Is Mold And What Causes Mold In Your Home
Mold is, by broad definition, a type of fungus that sprouts from microscopic spores floating in the air. When clusters of mold spores grow on surfaces, they start to reproduce and become visible to the human eye. If you have mold allergies, asthma, or another lung condition, even breathing in the microscopic pores can trigger an attack. If you dont, you may not even be aware that there is mold in your home until you see it or smell it .
All homes have the key ingredients needed for mold growth: the presence of mold spores, a surface for it to grow on, oxygen, warmth, and darkness. When you add moisture, whether from a water leak, stagnant water, or high levels of humidity, into the mix, thats where mold problems begin. Knowing where mold is commonly found in homes can help you prevent and treat it so you can keep your home and body healthy.
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Warning Signs You Have A Mold Problem
- Date: 05-2017
Molds are types of fungi that may grow indoors or outdoors, usually in damp, warm, and humid environments. The most common types of household molds might be found around bathrooms, basements, drywall, ceiling tiles, carpet, wallpaper, under sinks, and around plumbing pipes.
Mold in the home can pose serious health risks, but unfortunately many dont realize they have a mold problem because they dont know what to look for. Here you will read a little about mold warning signs, first as it relates to your health, and secondly as it relates to the structure and history of your home.
Mold Warning Signs: Allergies and Other Health Issues
When someone has mold in their home, they usually show allergy-related symptoms. If youre not sure whether your allergy-like symptoms are caused by mold in your home, then consider this question: do your symptoms get better once you go outdoors or leave your home? If so, then there is good chance that mold is the culprit.
Symptoms of mold allergies include:
- Itchy, watery eyes
- Irritated, itchy skin
Some forms of household mold are toxic, causing serious, life-threatening illness. These highly-dangerous molds might cause symptoms such as bleeding, internal organ damage, mental impairment, cancer, and even death.
Mold Warning Signs in Your Home
Worth The Cost Of Testing
Mold can be a tricky problem to deal with. The first step in tackling your potential mold problem is to have a certified inspector visit your home to assess the mold damage or to bring a sample of your mold growth to an accredited lab for testing. At JSE, we specialize in laboratory and in-home testing to provide you with an accurate analysis of your mold growth.
Our mold lab offers quick turn-around times and has hygienists on staff to answer your questions. In-house lab services include mold spore analysis by direct exam for both bulk and air samples. Mold can be a pesky problem in any household. If you suspect you have mold growth in your home, contact JSE online or at to get your sample tested.
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Your Baby Coughs At Night
According to a study published in Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, infants exposed to mold in their homes were three times more likely to develop asthma by age seven. Symptoms to watch for include coughing, especially at night difficulty breathing fast breathing frequent chest colds and wheezing or whistling sounds when exhaling. Heres how to remove mold from your babys toys.
How Do Molds Affect People
Exposure to damp and moldy environments may cause a variety of health effects, or none at all. Some people are sensitive to molds. For these people, exposure to molds can lead to symptoms such as stuffy nose, wheezing, and red or itchy eyes, or skin. Some people, such as those with allergies to molds or with asthma, may have more intense reactions. Severe reactions may occur among workers exposed to large amounts of molds in occupational settings, such as farmers working around moldy hay. Severe reactions may include fever and shortness of breath.
In 2004 the Institute of Medicine found there was sufficient evidence to link indoor exposure to mold with upper respiratory tract symptoms, cough, and wheeze in otherwise healthy people with asthma symptoms in people with asthma and with hypersensitivity pneumonitis in individuals susceptible to that immune-mediated condition.
In 2009, the World Health Organization issued additional guidance, the WHO Guidelines for Indoor Air Quality: Dampness and Mould pdf iconexternal icon pdf icon. Other recent studies have suggested a potential link of early mold exposure to development of asthma in some children, particularly among children who may be genetically susceptible to asthma development, and that selected interventions that improve housing conditions can reduce morbidity from asthma and respiratory allergies.
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