Tuesday, September 20, 2022

How Does Black Mold Affect Your Lungs

Effects Of Breathing Black Mold Spores

What are the effects of mold in the lungs?

Inhaling black mold spores can have no effect on some people and dramatic effects on others. The effects of breathing black mold spores depend on several factors, including the following:

  • Overall health. People who have mold allergies, asthma or other immune conditions are at higher risk for adverse reactions to mold exposure.
  • Age. Infants, young children and the elderly are more likely to experience negative health consequences after inhaling mold spores.
  • Mycotoxins and mVOCs. Although mold spores can cause sickness on their own, they are more dangerous to health when they carry mycotoxins and mVOCs.
  • Exposure. People who live or work in buildings with black mold are at a higher risk for developing mold-related illness than people who are only briefly exposed.
  • Genetics. Research indicates that certain genetic predispositions can make someone more susceptible to black mold toxins.

Even if the spores are from the same mold colony, they can trigger drastically different reactions in people. In general, people with asthma, autoimmune diseases and chronic respiratory conditions are more vulnerable to the effects of breathing black mold spores than others.

How Is Aspergillosis Diagnosed

Your doctor will probably ask you about your medical history, including the type and duration of your symptoms and whether you have a cough or a fever. It may be difficult to diagnose the condition, because symptoms may resemble those of other diseases.

Some of the diagnostic tests that may be required include:

  • Skin and blood tests: These tests are useful to diagnose ABPA, especially in cases where the patient has asthma, bronchiectasis or cystic fibrosis. The doctor or technician injects a small quantity of aspergillus antigen into the skin, usually the lower arm. A small red bump at or near the site will show that you have an allergic reaction. In addition, a sample of your blood might be analyzed to see if certain antibodies are present that indicate an allergic reaction.
  • Imaging tests: A chest X-ray or computerized tomography scan may be performed to examine the lungs.
  • Sputum culture: A sample of sputum might be stained and tested to see if aspergillus fungus is present.
  • Biopsy: A small sample of tissue is removed from the lungs or sinuses to diagnose invasive aspergillosis.

Medical Treatment For Mold On The Lungs

Anti-Fungal Medicine

The most common type of treatment for lungs that incur microbial growth is anti-fungal medicine. It usually involves taking prescription medication whether it be in pill or liquid form. Some of the names of the medications that are usually used are:

  • Itraconazole

Anti-fungal medication is generally for the mildest cases.

Surgery

Another option which is for the mod severe cases of a condition which we will get more into below called Aspergillosis is to have surgery. Surgery can be risky and can even involve removing a lung which is the last resort option.

I know, scary stuff!

At least we have two lungs right? Truth is, you can actually breathe perfectly fine with just one functioning lung.

Boosting The Immune System

While this can be done with many types of diseases, boosting the immune system can help fight infections that are associated with mold growing on the lungs.

Boosting the Immune System can involve any type of medication that raises your white blood cells which is essential in helping you fight off diseases and infections.

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What Should I Do If I Suspect Mold In My House

Youll need to address the cause of the mold such as water damage, excessive condensation, poor ventilation, and so on. The best way to make sure you get rid of mold in your house is to hire a professional mold inspector. They will conduct a thorough examination of your home, and assess the molds that are present.

What Are The Symptoms Of Aspergillosis

Anatomical Lungs Shape Flat Silicone Mold Molds for Resin

Symptoms can range from mild to severe, depending on the type of aspergillosis.

Pulmonary aspergillosis might not cause any symptoms, especially in the early stages. If the disease progresses, symptoms may include:

  • Coughing, sometimes accompanied by mucus or blood.
  • Bloody cough or massive bleeding from the lungs.

Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis may cause:

  • Coughing accompanied by mucus or blood.
  • Wheezing or worsening of asthma.
  • Fever.
  • Increased mucus or sputum secretions.
  • Inability to tolerate exercise or asthma brought on by exercise.

Many patients with asthma or cystic fibrosis already experience respiratory symptoms similar to those caused by an allergic reaction, so it may be difficult to detect ABPA in these situations. Sometimes, a worsening of symptoms such as coughing and wheezing is the only sign that the person is experiencing an allergic reaction.

If the allergic reaction recurs over time, and the lungs become inflamed repeatedly, damage to the lungs and central airways can occur. Recurrent allergic reactions may cause scarring of lung tissue and widening of the central airways, a condition known as bronchiectasis.

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Is There More Than One Type Of Aspergillosis

There are several types of aspergillosis.

Pulmonary aspergillosis is most likely to develop in people who have chronic lung disorders or damaged lungs. These people are likely to have abnormal spaces in their lungs where the fungus can grow. The fungus can also rarely infect sinuses and ear canals. The mold spores can colonize inside lung cavities that developed as a result of chronic diseases, such tuberculosis, emphysema, or advanced sarcoidosis. The fibers of fungus might form a lump by combining with white blood cells and blood clots. This lump or ball of fungus is called an aspergilloma or mycetoma. In some cases, a fungus ball may be present in other organs of the body.

Invasive aspergillosis, the most severe type, occurs when the infection travels from the lungs into the bloodstream. Other organs, such as the kidneys, liver, skin or brain, may become infected. This is a very serious condition that may result in death if not treated. People with very weakened immune systems are more susceptible to invasive aspergillosis. Other risk factors include a low white blood cell count, long-term use ofcorticosteroids, or hospitalization.

Removing Mold From Your Home

Resolve any issues causing mold growth, and throw away anything affected by mold or contributing to mold growth that you cant clean.

  • Wear protective gear. As youre dealing with the moldy area, cover yourself with a mask, gloves, goggles, and rubber boots. If youre cleaning a lot of mold, you can also wear disposable clothing or a mold-resistant suit.
  • Ventilate the room. Open all doors and windows to increase ventilation.
  • Sort and discard. Remove any objects from the area that havent been touched by mold growth. Throw away any items that cant be cleaned.
  • Replace moldy housing materials. Cut away and replace mold-damaged drywall, ceiling tiles, and carpet.
  • Scrub and disinfect. Cover and scrub nonporous surfaces affected by mold with bleach, a fungicide, or detergent and water, then dry them. Dont mix cleaning products together.
  • Address any water issues. Make sure any water problems are fixed and the area is dry before you renovate the room.

You cant prevent all mold, but you can reduce the amount in your home. Here are some dos and donts for managing mold and keeping it from growing indoors.

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Is Mold Dangerous To Breathe

Normally when we come across mold whether in our home or somewhere else we recoil, perhaps gag and then set about getting rid of it or simply walking away. And whilst mold is, unarguably, a less-than-favorable sight to behold, the real concern can actually be a lot more serious, depending on the person and the type of mold found. So, what can breathing in mold actually do?

Mold produces allergens, irritants and sometimes, even, toxic substances, depending on the type. Some people are more sensitive to mold, for example, babies and the elderly, those with existing skin and respiratory conditions and those with a weakened immune system. For these people, breathing it in may cause a blocked nose, sore throat, wheezing, shortness of breath, skin itchiness, headaches, fatigue or eye irritation, according to a 2004 study by the Institute of Medicine and others.

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How To Get Rid Of Black Mold

Mold Affects the Lungs

Trying to kill or remove toxic black mold yourself is not advisable. If not handled properly, you could end up disturbing the mold and releasing millions of spores and mycotoxins into the air. This could worsen you indoor air quality and cause damage to your home.

Since black mold is toxic, youre better off contacting a professional mold remediation company with experience in cleaning mold in buildings and homes.

Mold removal specialists will be able to accurately determine the extent of the mold infestation and can suggest the right course of action for your home. If you suspect that your home has black moldthat is, if you can see and/or smell it .

A healthy, mold-free home ensures a healthy, happy family.

Get Special Gift: Industry-Standard Mold Removal Guidelines

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Recommended Reading: How To Get Rid Of Mold On Drywall

Causes Of Damp And Mould

Mould and damp are caused by excess moisture. Moisture in buildings can be caused by leaking pipes, rising damp in basements or ground floors, or rain seeping in because of damage to the roof or around window frames.

A newly built home may be damp if the water used when building it is still drying out for example, in the plaster on the walls. Excess moisture indoors can also be caused by condensation.

If you have mould or damp it’s important to find out why you have excess moisture in your home. When you know what’s causing the damp, you can make sure your home is repaired or take steps to limit the moisture in the air. You may need to get a professional to remove mould for you, but if it’s only a small amount you may be able to remove it yourself.

Page last reviewed: 8 August 2018 Next review due: 8 August 2021

Is Mold Growing On The Lungs Fatal

Just like anything else, if gone untreated, it can most certainly turn fatal.

However

Overall it generally depends on the current health of the person affected. Remember, mold generally wont grow on the lungs unless there are large spaces in your lungs.

You should already be on alert because you wont have large spaces on your lungs for the most part unless you have had some type illness associated with a lung infection.

Here is the bottom line:

It needs to be taken seriously

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Could Your Symptoms Be From A General Mold Allergy

Regardless of the species of mold in question, symptoms of a mold allergy can appear very similar, especially when looking at many individuals. So if you see black-colored mold and experience allergic symptoms, it could be Stachybotrys, or it could be another species of mold. That said, the same person can react differently to different molds. For example, one person may have severe dry eyes in response to a Cladosporium exposure, while Aspergillus exposure may cause wheezing and asthma-like symptoms.

Who Gets Aspergillosis

What is Black Fungus?

Exposure to Aspergillus is not likely to cause problems in the majority of people whose immune systems are healthy. However, people with chronic lung problems or people with weak immune systems may be at greater risk for developing the infection. People with weakened immune systems include those people taking chemotherapy or those who have had organ transplants.

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How To Clean It

There are a variety of recommended ways to clean Black mold spores from your home. We recommend cleaning mold yourself only when the infected area is less than 10 square feet.

Wearing protective gear is the most important part of the process. Face masks, goggles, long-sleeves, and gloves are all necessary so that you dont breathe in the mold spores or get them on your skin.

  • Clear the air create a cross breeze by opening up doors and windows. This helps dry the air and remove moisture from the home. Also, try using a dehumidifier to dry the air. Once you close off the home, use a good filter and run the A/C to start catching mold spores in the air.
  • Protect yourself protective eyewear, a face mask or respirator, and non-porous gloves are important to protect your lungs and skin.
  • Vinegar mixture one cup of vinegar and one gallon of water can be used on areas safe enough for you to clean on your own. However, it is highly recommended that you reach out to a local mold removal company, to protect your home and health.

Other Lung Infections Caused By Mold Spores In The Lungs

Along with aspergillosis, there are other types of mold which can thrive in the lungs, leading to similar symptoms as mentioned above. These two conditions are histoplasmosis and coccidioidomycosis. Again, the best way to determine if you or a loved one has mold in the lungs is to talk to a doctor about symptoms and get tests performed to determine which type of mold is the cause of infection.

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How Can I Breathe In Mold

Although mold appears to us as a solid, fuzzy, growth, it is much more complex. Mold spreads by sending tiny, invisible spores into the air. They then land on other surfaces and allow new colonies to grow. If you have mold growing in your home, these spores can travel through the air, even in the ventilation, and you breathe them in.

What Does It Cost

Breathing Mold Can Cause Health Issues

Black mold removal costs can vary based on where it is located in the home and how large of an area is affected. If the size of the coverage area is small, you could probably pay as little as $500. However, if the area of black mold coverage is large, you could pay up to $4,000. If your attic or air ducts are affected by black mold spores, then you are going to pay $2,000 to $6,000 for removal.

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Remove Sugar & Processed Grains

This should be a no-brainer by now: processed grains and sugar are highly inflammatory, and have no part of a healthy diet. Removing all sources will ensure your body has the opportunity to heal, as opposed to be constantly fighting the low levels of chronic inflammation caused by sugar and grains.

Opting for a high-fat and protein diet, void of refined sugars, helps control your blood sugar throughout the day which is associated with health and longevity, and supports cellular healing.

Common sources of sugar and processed grains to avoid include:

  • Breakfast cereals

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Health Effects Of Black Mold

Are you worried about black mold? Despite fearing black mold, many people dont actually understand its implications for human health. If youre one of those people, it may be time to educate yourself on the topic. Research suggests that as the climate changes, black mold could become more prevalent in homes.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency , regions of the U.S. will experience heavier rains, hotter weather and more frequent and intense natural disasters in the coming years. These weather events will likely accelerate wear and tear on homes and cause water damage that leads to mold growth, including black mold growth.

Fortunately, there are several effective strategies to reduce mold and avoid sickness. One of the best ways to protect yourself is to run a high-quality air purifier for mold. Keep reading to learn about the health effects of black mold and how to prevent mold sickness.

Need a powerful air purifier for mold? Air Oasis purifiers drastically reduce airborne contaminants, including mold, allergens, VOCs, smoke, viruses, bacteria and more. Visit our online store today and start breathing easier.

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What Happens If You Breathe In Mold

Mold is commonly found both indoors and outdoors, and chances are that you breathe it in more often than you realize.

When mold spores make their way into your body, your immune system immediately tries to rid the body of the mold.

Physically, these symptoms could look like coughing or sneezing.

These symptoms could worsen, however, depending on the level of exposure and your sensitivity to mold.

Thankfully, these symptoms typically only last as long as you are exposed to the mold, or if the mold spores stick around in your body.

Everyone reacts differently to mold exposure, and there are several factors that come into play when gauging the severity.

How Do You Get The Molds Out Of Buildings Including Homes Schools And Places Of Employment

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Mold growing in homes and buildings indicates that there is a problem with water or moisture. This is the first problem to address.

Remove moldy items from living areas. Once mold starts to grow in carpet, insulation, ceiling tiles, drywall, or wallboard, the only way to deal with the problem is by removal and replacement.

It is important to properly clean and dry the area as you can still have an allergic reaction to parts of the dead mold and mold contamination may recur if there is still a source of moisture.

Remove or replace carpets and upholstery that have been soaked and cannot be dried promptly.

Clean up and dry out your home thoroughly and quickly after any flooding. Dig out mud and dirt . Use a wet vacuum to remove remaining dirt. Scrub cleanable surfaces with soapy water and a bristle brush. Thoroughly clean all hard surfaces with water and dish detergent. Dry surfaces quickly and thoroughly after cleaning. If you have a fan, air conditioner or dehumidifier that wasnt affected by flooding use it to help the surfaces dry after you finish cleaning

Mold growth can be removed from hard surfaces with commercial products, soap and water, or a bleach solution of no more than 1 cup of bleach in 1 gallon of water to kill mold on surfaces. Never mix bleach with ammonia or other household cleaners.

If you choose to use bleach to clean up mold:

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