When To See The Doctor
It is possible to mistake your symptoms for a cold, flu, asthma or pneumonia. It is important to help your doctor make the right diagnosis by disclosing any information of whether you were exposed to mold. As soon as you notice any of the above symptoms, it is imperative that you seek immediate medical help as it can lower the chances of serious infection. Mold in the lungs can cause other serious health problems in the future, if it is not addressed in time. During your visit, your doctor may perform several tests to confirm or disprove a diagnosis. Blood tests are used to measure your immune systems response to mold and a skin prick test is used to check reactions to common allergens.
It is important to take precautionary measures to prevent exposure to mold. Stay away from places that you are likely to be exposed to mold. Lung infections can develop into life-threatening conditions if no proper treatment is provided. If you experience any symptoms related to mold-illness, it is advisable to seek immediate medical attention to prevent your symptoms from worsening.
What Causes Nasal Congestion
Arranging For Mold Removal
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends consulting your physician before beginning the mold removal process if you have health issues, to make sure its safe for you to clean up mold yourself or to be present during the cleanup process. If you think you may need to hire a professional, you can schedule a free in-home consultation with an experienced mold removal professional to discuss your needs. Just follow this link to find qualified professionals offering free consultations in your area.
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How Do Molds Get In The Indoor Environment And How Do They Grow
Mold is found both indoors and outdoors. Mold can enter your home through open doorways, windows, vents, and heating and air conditioning systems. Mold in the air outside can also attach itself to clothing, shoes, and pets can and be carried indoors. When mold spores drop on places where there is excessive moisture, such as where leakage may have occurred in roofs, pipes, walls, plant pots, or where there has been flooding, they will grow. Many building materials provide suitable nutrients that encourage mold to grow. Wet cellulose materials, including paper and paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, wood, and wood products, are particularly conducive for the growth of some molds. Other materials such as dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation materials, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery, commonly support mold growth.
Whos At Greater Risk Of Mold Exposure
Some people are more sensitive to mold, whether this is because of their genetic makeup or the current state of their health. Individuals with already-compromised immune systems infants and small children the elderly and asthmatics are especially susceptible to the adverse health effects of mold exposure.
Remember that reactions to mold are uniquely individual, since no two immune systems are alike.
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How Long Does It Take For A Person To Feel The Effects Of Black Mold
Black mold causes many health problems. It is often difficult to tell exactly what the time frame is for a person to feel the effects of exposure to black mold. Some symptoms and maladies show up immediately, others take several days, and others can actually take years of exposure to cause a definitive health issue.
In Severe Cases Symptoms Caused By Inhaling Black Mold Can Lead To The Following Health Troubles:
- Respiratory complications
Sometimes mold invades spaces that are hard to see and reach. It spreads fast, burrowing into walls and ceilings and hiding in cupboards and under carpets. Quite often, people are exposed to black mold without even knowing it. If you or anyone in your home is experiencing any of the aforementioned symptoms without knowing why, you may be exposed to mold.
Black mold should be approached with extreme caution. Tackling black mold without proper knowledge and equipment is unsafe. The suspected contamination should always be examined and removed by professionals.
A professional black mold removal service will tackle the contamination with advanced equipment and technology. For instance, protective masks and gear should be worn at all times, to ensure maximum safety.
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From Concise To Confused
Out of nowhere, Kimberlyn went from a highly-effective, busy, working mother, to a disorganized, uninvolved, confused individual who couldnt focus long enough to put together cohesive, coherent thoughts. She was no longer able to make decisions for herself and struggled to even get dressed in the morning. Insomnia, anxiety, and a loss of appetite accompanied the confusion. It was like I lost my personality, says Kimberlyn.
Is Black Mold Dangerous Heres The Truth
The truth is, many people arent negatively affected by mold. However, mold can cause allergies in some people who are sensitive to mold. In these cases, it can make their lives miserable. Mold can also cause severe medical issues with a small percentage of people who have other health complications.
If youve seen a concerning growth in your home or been told that you have a black mold issue, you probably have a lot of questions.
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What About Tiny Mold Toxins Aka Mycotoxins
As mentioned above, though the Stachybotrys spores may be sticky and not easily airborne, there are other airborne contaminants to worry about: tiny fragments of mold and special toxins called mycotoxins. These contaminants may cause illness in those who are exposed, with mycotoxins being the most concerning.
You can think about mycotoxins as the molds defense: they are used for protection from environmental threats. Mycotoxins are minute organic compounds as small as 0.03 microns. These tiny molecules can stick to particles already floating through the air. Studies have found Stachybotrys mycotoxins on mold fragments that have broken off from a mold colony after it has been disturbed . This can be harmfulairborne particles less than 1.0 microns are easily breathed into the respiratory system, where they can cause irritation and potential allergic reactions. If this occurs, mycotoxins could accumulate onto local tissue and ultimately enter the bloodstream. The study by Brasel cited above showed that trichothecenes could be measured in the blood of people exposed to an indoor environment that had Stachybotrys.
Stachybotrys creates a class of mycotoxins referred to as trichothecenes. Trichothecenes have been widely studied and have been proven to be detrimental to the health of humans, animals and plants. In fact, trichothecenes have been investigated for the purpose of biological warfare needless to say, they are not something to which you want to be exposed.
Does Mold Cause Nasal Congestion
Nasal congestion, otherwise known as a stuffy nose, can happen to you regardless of whether or not you have allergies. Often, a stuffed up nose can be the result of a cold, the flu or dry air and shouldnt be a cause for concern. However, if you notice recurring and persistent nasal congestion, particularly at night, then there may be something in your environment thats causing your body to react this way. One of the most common reasons for a stuffy nose is mold, and if you experience this repeatedly over a long period of time, you likely have a mold problem somewhere in your house one that should be remediated as soon as possible.
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How Are We Exposed To Mold
Mold needs organic matter to feed upon and moisture in order to grow. When growing conditions are right, mold releases spores and volatile organic compounds into the air, which may make some people feel sick.
Mold spores may be breathed in or absorbed through skin. Mold can also grow on food and may be hazardous if ingested.
How Are Mold Exposure And Tuberculosis Related
As we mentioned earlier, there are three types of mold:
Each of these types can have a different impact on your health, from a simple skin rash to breathing issues and even cancer. Which symptoms you will experience depends mainly on your immune system. But, even the strongest immune systems can weaken with time if it is continuously expose to mold. Especially to Pathogenic and Toxigenic types of mold.
Tuberculosis is one of the possible mold effect you can experience and we can blame the toxic type of mold for that. Toxic mold spores often produce mycotoxins that threaten your health and make you vulnerable to diseases, like the above mentioned tuberculosis.
At Mold Busters, we often get asked whether mold can cause tuberculosis, given that it has such a profound effect on the respiratory system.
No at least not directly.
Although mold itself cannot cause tuberculosis, it does weaken peoples immune systems, making them more vulnerable to infections. Once your immune systems stops working full-time, you shouldnt worry about tuberculosis only, but many other infections, mold related or not.
People who spend a substantial amount of time in areas with poor air quality are at greater risk of mold exposure and are, therefore, more susceptible to allergic, bacterial and viral infections due to weakened immune systems.
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What Is Black Mold
Mold is a vital part of our ecosystem. It absorbs and decomposes organic matter. Mold grows anywhere that the conditions are right. It needs adequate moisture, a food source, oxygen, and an appropriate temperature to grow. If these conditions are present, then mold will grow and reproduce by releasing spores, which are microscopic cells that act like seeds, into the environment.
While mold plays an important role outside, when it grows inside buildings, it can cause health problems for some people. When people talk about black mold, they are usually referring to Stachybotrys chartarum, which has been referred to as “toxic black mold.” However, there is no evidence to suggest that the color of mold affects how dangerous it is.
There is also no evidence that exposure to any type of mold causes memory loss, trouble focusing, headaches, fatigue, autoimmune disease, or infant pulmonary hemorrhage, which is bleeding into the lungs.
Some molds do produce mycotoxins, which are toxic substances. However, mycotoxins are most harmful when they are eaten, not inhaled. Although the threat of black mold has been overhyped in the media, mold can cause health problems in people who are sensitive to it. Mold should always be properly treated and removed from buildings using adequate precautions.
How Best To Remove Mold From Your Home
Here are some tips for how to remove mold from your home and prevent exposure:
- Check your home for places where mold might lurk, such as under sinks and in basement walls. Things to look for include visible mold growth, water leaks, and water seepage.
- Promptly fix any leaks you find, including leaky roofs and pipes.
- Dry damp surfaces, such as shower stalls, immediately after use.
- Control your homes humidity level with a dehumidifier.
- Keep kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms well ventilated.
- If flooding occurs, clean and dry the flooded area as quickly as possible.
Since mold can grow under carpets and behind walls, moldy homes dont always have obvious mold patches.
Mold smell is unmistakable but doesnt always accompany mold. If you suspect that your home is harboring mold but cant find the source, a home inspection will help.
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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.
Navigating All Of The Confusing And Concerning Information About Black Mold Is Hard But Were Here To Tell You The Truth
Many of us have heard of the dangers of toxic black mold and may worry about black mold poisoning, but the truth is that black mold is a much more manageable problem than you might expect.
Few topics get us more upset than seeing misinformation publicized about toxic black mold, and mold in general, by unscrupulous companies and zealous media articles that seem more interested in sensationalism than fact-based reporting.
When you understand what youre dealing with, you can make informed choices to keep yourself and your loved ones healthy. Were here to cut through the mess and help you understand what having black mold in your home may mean, and give you some tips on how to fix the problem yourself and save big money in the process.
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Who Is Most At Risk Of Mold Exposure
We come into contact with mold in three primary ways: inhalation, physical contact or ingestion. But every reaction to mold is different, as no two immune systems are the same.
Some people are more sensitive to mold than others. Both your genetic makeup and your current state of health are factors that will influence your reaction.
The following groups of people are especially susceptible to the adverse health effects of mold exposure, because their bodies may be weak to begin with:
- Infants and small children
If youve been experiencing some of these symptoms and are concerned, .
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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What Are The Symptoms Of Mold Sickness
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.
How Much Mold Exposure Is Harmful
Molds are a type of fungi, which can flourish both indoors and outside. There are millions of mold species.
Mold is important for the planets ecosystem, because it helps break down waste products and organic matter, such as leaves, dead trees, and garbage.
Some people get sick from exposure to mold. Others have no symptoms and dont experience ill effects of any kind.
In this article, well talk about the potential dangers of mold exposure, identify whos most vulnerable, and provide solutions for keeping your environment mold-proof.
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