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How Do I Know If Im Sick From Mold

What Does Mouse Droppings Look Like

Symptoms of Mold Exposure and Mold Illness from Toxic Black Mold Exposure

A mouse dropping can measure about 3 to 6 mm in length or about 3/16 to ¼ inches long. Mouse poop is usually thick in the middle and tiny at the ends, unlike Norway or roof rats. The mouse dropping shares some similarities with rick grains except that they are smaller. The colour is mostly dark brown to gray. The poop becomes grayish as it gets older. Once you notice pink, green or blue mouse droppings then know they have eaten coloured rodenticide baits.

You will find mouse poops in small volumes scattered around. A mouse can release between 50 and 75 pellets of poops daily and over 25,000 annually and will not decay for years. Fresh poops always look glittery, wet and appear as shiny black.

Test After Test With No Answers

That was the first episode, lasting for three months starting in November of 2010. In that time she lost twenty-five pounds, was forced to abandon her practice, and withdrew from activities outside the home. Her doctor, family, and friends told her that they thought she had depression or even bipolar disorder. She resisted, even in her confused and debilitated state, and insisted on further testing, believing that something was terribly wrong.

After a series of blood tests, her general practitioner diagnosed Kimberlyn with heavy metal poisoning and recommended she undergo chelation therapy. After undergoing this treatment, she did feel better. However, within five months the illness returned.

During her second cycle of illness, Kimberlyn sought out another doctor who performed a series of tests and suggested that maybe Kimberlyn was suffering from mold illness, also known as toxic mold syndrome. This was the first time mold had been suggested as a possible cause for Kimberlyns symptoms and was unexpected due to the arid climate of Arizona. Yet after having her home tested, three different types of toxic mold were found, including Stachybotrys, also known as black mold.

Is There A Blood Test For Mold

Blood test.

Your doctor takes a blood sample and sends it to a testing laboratory to test for the reaction of certain antibodies in your immune system to different mold species, including black mold. A blood test can also check for biotoxins in your blood from mold exposure, which can also reveal mold poisoning.

Read Also: How To Get Rid Of Mold On Shower Ceiling

Mold Spores Black Mold And Less

Mold is the leading cause of Sick Building Syndrome and can have dire effects on your health. In fact, in about 80% of sick building syndrome cases, mold infestations are the main cause of illness.

Indoor mold is not only disgusting, its also extremely unhealthy. Mold, which can either be toxic or an allergen, thrives in damp environments and spreads easily. Mold is typically found in basements, bathrooms, kitchens, attics and other areas of buildings that may be susceptible to high humidity levels. Mold infestations can be caused by pipe breaks, water leaks, roof leaks, and other water intrusions. Mold spores can spread to an entire building through the heating and air duct system.

Easy tip: Check the plants in your office. Overwatering can cause mold. Yes, your plant may be making you sick!

Can You Live In A House With Mold

Signs Of Mold Illness No One Should Ignore !

Its impossible to get rid of all mold and mold spores in your home, but because mold spores cant grow without moisture, reducing moisture in your home is the best way to prevent or eliminate mold growth. Use dehumidifiers and air conditioners, especially in hot, humid climates, to reduce moisture in the air.11 Feb 2019

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What Causes Black Mold

Molds are an important part of our environment. They decompose dead plants and animals. All types of mold will grow if the conditions are right. Mold grows and spreads quickly in the right conditions, which include:

  • Moisture level at or over 70%
  • Adequate food source
  • Oxygen
  • Temperatures that range from 40 to 100 degrees F

Mold can grow anywhere in your house that provides these conditions. The most likely places mold will grow are:

  • Anywhere that there has been a water leak.
  • Damp rooms without adequate ventilation, such as bathrooms.
  • Basements where humidity tends to be higher.
  • Any areas with a lot of water condensation.
  • Any areas where flooding has occurred.

How Can I Prevent A Relapse

Mold spores can be found just about anywhere, whether inside or outside. However, you can take preventative measures to ensure they dont breed into larger, toxic colonies. If there are water leaks in or around the house, have them repaired immediately. Dark, wet environments and plenty of organic material create the perfect home for mold growth. Keep your attic and basement or crawl space dry and free of moisture. Consider bringing in an environmental professional and having an ERMI mold test done every so often to evaluate your home for the presence of mold. There are DIY kits that can be purchased, but these results arent always accurate.

If you suspect that you have been exposed to mold, either because you have found mold in your home or you have had nagging symptoms similar to the ones discussed, make an appointment with your healthcare provider. As you make a plan to remove mold from your home and prevent future relapses, team to have the mold problem removed.

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Visible Dark Rings And Spots

One of the early signs that mold could be lurking in your home is the appearance of dark rings or spots on the ceilings or walls. Even if these spots arent mold per se, they may be indicative of water damage or pooling water, which is a recipe for mold growth.Dark rings on your ceiling? It might be an early sign of black mold.

If you see anything like this in your home, its best to mop it up as quickly as possible and clean the area using disinfectants. If you cant access the area, get an inspector to do it for you. Be sure to check other areas as well, since there could be more widespread water damage.

What Are The Symptoms Of Mold Sickness

mold illness faq // how to get a diagnosis, move, and heal

If your Total Body Burden is high, or you are genetically predisposed to recycling toxins, regular exposure to mold can cause allergy symptoms, such as:

  • Wheezing/shortness of breath
  • Long standing or frequent sinusitis

And, serious pain and neurological symptoms, such as:

  • Headaches and migraines
  • Muscle cramping, aches and pains
  • Persistent nerve pain
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Poor memory, brain fog, difficulty with focus

In some cases, the spores from mold take root and grow in specific parts of the body, such as the lungs and sinuses. This can cause serious respiratory illnesses and infections.

Also Check: How To Get Mold Off The Bathroom Ceiling

Is There A Test To Determine If I Have Been Exposed To Mold

Some physicians have recommended testing for mold-specific antibodies. Thepresence of antibodies only indicates that you have been exposed to a substanceat some time. It does not tell you when you were exposed, where the exposuretook place, or how much of the mold you were exposed to. Having a positive testfor mold-specific antibodies alone is generally considered insufficient toprove that health effects reported by individuals in moisture-damaged buildingsare caused by exposure to mold.

Mold Toxicity Is Also An Issue And It Is Considered A Chronic Inflammatory Response

An acute and chronic, systemic inflammatory response acquired following exposure to the interior environment of a water-damaged building with resident toxigenic organisms, including, but not limited to fungi, bacteria, actinomycetes, and Mycobacterium serve as inflammogens! Inflammogens keep your body in a state of inflammation.

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How Common Is Mold In Buildings

Molds are very common in buildings and homes. Mold will grow in places with a lot of moisture, such as around leaks in roofs, windows, or pipes, or where there has been flooding. Mold grows well on paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, and wood products. Mold can also grow in dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery.

The most common indoor molds are Cladosporium, Penicillium, and Aspergillus. We do not have precise information about how often different molds are found in buildings and homes.

You Visibly See Mold Spores

17 Signs Of Mold Illness: What It Is and How You Know if ...

Of course one of the most obvious ways to determine that you have mold in your house is if you can see it. The downside? If you see a ton of visible mold, it can be an indicator that you have a big problem on your hands.

“Once you see it, you’ve got a big mold problem because what you’re seeing is literally just the tip of the iceberg,” Kelly Hayes-Raitt, a housesitter and the former director of the HomeSafe Campaign in California, told INSIDER.

Simply scrubbing the visible mold with soap and a sponge won’t actually get rid of the mold. So if you see visible mold, you need to reach out to a mold remediation company or another expert to help you get things under control, including any leaks that may have caused the issue in the first place.

Also Check: How To Clean Mold Off A Ceiling

Toxic Mold: Questions And Answers

I’m sick. How do I know if I’m sick from toxins in a water-damaged building?Mold Warriors’ careful scientific definitions will help you figure out whether you have the symptoms of neurotoxic illness. An included series of biological markersincluding the gene susceptibility HLA DR test and the visual contrast sensitivity testwill also help you sort out whether the illness could be related to mold toxins, such as from exposure to water-damaged buildings. The VCS test has been used for 40 years to assess the potential for exposure to biologically produced neurotoxins. Also, evaluating your specific lab tests will help you and your physician confirm the diagnosis. These labs include hypothalamic hormones, MSH deficiency and abnormal regulation of pituitary hormones, antidiuretic hormone and concomitant measure of osmolality ACTH and simultaneous cortisol, VEGF, cytokines, complement and measurement of MMP-9.

How do I know if the mold growing on the ceiling in my living room is dangerous? Same question for the mildew on my books?Sampling molds is incredibly easy. Making a “tape-lift,” rubbing a piece of clear Scotch tape over the mold, is the first step. Send the tape to a reputable lab for identification. P and K Microbiology charges $35 for the service. Contact your physician to find out more details, as most labs won’t accept samples from patients.

Is the mold illness contagious?No, exposure is necessary.

Things Youll Need For Diy Mold Remediation

You will need some basic tools and supplies before getting started with mold remediation. Make sure you have them handy.

  • Plastic sheeting
  • Box cutter or a utility knife
  • Duct tape
  • Protective equipment
  • Fungicide cleaning spray
  • Bleach
  • Disposable cleaning towels

Once you have all of the supplies, you are ready to get started. Here are the steps for safe mold removal.

Read Also: How To Clean Mold From Shower Ceiling

Mold Reactions: Who’s At Risk

For people sensitive to mold, inhaling or touching mold spores can cause allergic reactions, including sneezing, runny nose, red eyes, and skin rash. People with serious mold allergies may have more severe reactions, including shortness of breath. In people with asthma who are allergic to mold, breathing in spores can also cause asthma attacks.

In addition to people with allergies and asthma, others who may be more sensitive to the effects of mold include:

  • Infants and children
  • People whose immune systems are compromised due to HIV infection, cancer, liver disease, or chemotherapy
  • People with chronic lung disease

Who Is Most At Risk For Health Problems Associated With Exposure To Mold

IS MOLD MAKING YOU SICK? | What I’ve learned in four years of Mold Illness (CIRS)

People with allergies may be more sensitive to molds. People with immune suppression or underlying lung disease are more susceptible to fungal infections. Individuals with chronic respiratory disease may experience difficulty breathing. Individuals with immune suppression are at increased risk for infection from molds. If you or your family members have these conditions, a qualified medical clinician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment.

Also Check: Can Black Mold Cause Lung Cancer

When To Go To The Emergency Room

Symptoms of mold exposure are not usually an emergency, but in some instances, you should seek immediate medical treatment. Go directly to the nearest emergency room or call 911 if you:

  • Have significant trouble breathing
  • Have an asthma attack that doesnt respond to your usual medication or seems worse than usual
  • Have a very high fever
  • Cough up blood or experience a bloody, frothy discharge from the nose or mouth
  • Are confused or disoriented

Let the emergency room staff know if you think your symptoms might be related to mold exposure.

Keep in mind the fact that most doctors have an answering service and a health care professional is on call 24 hours a day, so if youre not sure if you need immediate care or can wait to make an appointment at your doctors office, call the office any time, day or night, for advice.

How To Remove Black Mold

Protect yourself. You don’t need to worry about having mold tested if you find mold in your house. But you should get rid of it no matter what type of mold it is. Take precautions to protect yourself before you attempt to remove mold.

Use an N-95 face mask to avoid breathing in mold spores. Wear gloves to protect your hands and goggles without ventilation holes to protect your eyes.â

Find and destroy the mold. The most important part of removing mold is finding and removing its water source. Mold can’t grow without moisture. Keep the following tips in mind when you’re cleaning up mold:

  • Items that can’t be dried quickly should be discarded if they show signs of mold or water damage. Porous items such as carpet, padding, drywall, and paper soak up moisture.
  • Do not paint or caulk over moldy surfaces. Remove the mold and dry the surfaces before you paint. Paint applied over mold will peel.
  • Use plastic sheeting to block an area with mold from the rest of your house and keep the spores from spreading.
  • Scrub hard surfaces with mold with detergent and water and dry them thoroughly.
  • Put any moldy items in a plastic bag before you take them out of the room to prevent mold spores from spreading.
  • Use a HEPA filter in your air conditioner and furnace to capture mold spores that may be airborne in your house.
  • Consult a specialist if you’re not sure of the best way to clean a valuable or sentimental item.â

Also Check: How To Fix Mold On Ceiling

What Causes Mold To Grow Indoors

The conditions present in your home can play a critical role in the formation of mold in your indoor environment, with certain ideal conditions causing mold growth. Moisture is usually the most important condition that needs to be present in the environment since mold cannot grow without moisture in the environment. Additionally, mold will require a food source such as wood, drywall, or cotton to feed on in the environment, darkness to minimize exposure to ultraviolet light, warmer temperatures, oxygen, and time to thoroughly grow and spread within the environment. When all of these conditions are met in an indoor environment like your home, mold will flourish and grow rapidly which can leave for major problems to both your indoor air quality and to the health of those exposed to this mold growth.

Other issues in a home can also promote the growth of mold indoors, these can be normal occurrences in the home that will unknowingly advance mold that is developing in the area. Elevated levels of humidity indoors have been correlated with the growth of mold, as mold feeds off of high humidity levels in the air. Also, poor ventilation will aid in the progression of mold growth indoors since it will create pockets of moist air in the environment for mold to thrive.

Mold Problems in House

Treating Symptoms Of Mold Exposure

How Do You Know if Mold Is Making You Sick?

If youre suffering from health problems related to mold exposure, there are two important components of treatment.

First, you need to see your doctor. Let your doctor know if youve been exposed to mold and that your symptoms may be related to mold exposure. It may affect the treatment prescribed. Your doctor may prescribe antihistamines or other medications for allergy-like symptoms. If you have infections like bronchitis or pneumonia, youll probably need antibiotics. If your symptoms are severe, your doctor may recommend not returning to your home until the mold can be removed.

Second, you need to have all traces of mold removed from your home. As long as you continue to be exposed to mold, youll probably continue to suffer from toxic mold symptoms. In fact, the symptoms will probably get worse as time goes on. Any medical treatment will be of limited effectiveness as long as you continue to be around mold.

Mold remediation is a complicated procedure and while some homeowners prefer to handle the job themselves, its not recommended if youre experiencing health problems related to mold exposure. The process of removing mold stirs up the mold spores that cause symptoms, so doing the mold remediation yourself can end up making you sicker.

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What Is Chronic Inflammatory Syndrome

What Is Chronic Inflammatory Syndrome?

Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome , also known as Sick Building Syndrome , is a combination of illnesses or aliments that are in direct relation with an individuals place of work or home environment:

An acute and chronic, systemic inflammatory response syndrome acquired following exposure to the interior environment of a water-damaged building with resident toxigenic organisms, including, but not limited to fungi, bacteria, actinomycetes and mycobacteria as well as inflammagens such as endotoxins, beta glucans, hemolysins, proteinases, mannans, c-type lectins and possibly spirocyclic drimanes, plus volatile ogranic compounds.

The term Sick Building Syndrome was first coined by the World Health Organization in the 1980s and it is believed that it is caused by poor air quality caused by water damage.

According to Shoemaker:

This illness happens after exposure to the interior environment of a Water-Damaged Building . There are many ways buildings become home to a toxic mix of microbes, fragments of microbes, and harmful chemicals. Buildings can host fungi, bacteria, mycobacteria, and actinomycetes as a result of construction defects like inappropriate ventilation faulty construction of crawl spaces or inadequate building design flat roofs or fake stucco cladding without adequate caulking incomplete basements exposed to saturated ground water conditions or not correcting water leaks.

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