Getting A Mold Checkup
Getting rid of the mold in your home is your first priority. Since CDC guidelines don’t distinguish between different types of mold and recommend the prompt removal of all mold in your home, testing beforehand isn’t a priority if you’ve already decided you have a problem. Testing can be useful when you want to make sure your property is free of mold after a cleanup, though.
There are a couple of ways you can arrange for a test. You can purchase an in-home test kit, follow the directions and submit the resulting sample to a lab. The costs for this can vary quite a bit, anywhere from $40 to more than $200, and the results might not be reliable. Consumer Reports conducted an evaluation of home mold testing kits in 2006, and none of the four kits they looked at received a recommendation. The problems ranged from the kits having no expiration dates, potentially compromising the results, to being difficult to use .
There is a third choice. After a cleanup, you can make periodic, careful evaluations of the infected area yourself and monitor your family’s health to see if the problem recurs. The time and effort you take with the clean-up and the extent of the mold damage may have an impact on how comfortable you feel with this option. If a foul smell alerted you to a mold problem in the first place, using your nose to check the area periodically might be a good way to gauge the success of your cleanup efforts.
Testing For Black Mold By Sight
Black mold looks like splotchy dark gray blooms proliferating on walls, floors and furniture. It typically grows in dark, damp, out-of-the-way places. If it is allowed to grow, it will eventually enter your ventilation system and may attach to surfaces all over your house. Therefore, you should check every potential mold hiding place in your house. Common locations for black mold include:
- Under carpeting
- In gutters
- Behind pipes
Sight-testing for black mold is unfortunately not a perfect method. Mold may be present but not visible, or you may mistake simple water damage for mold on a dark surface.
How To Test For Mold In 6 Steps
Mold infestations can usually be seen or smelled, but they can also remain hidden behind walls or under carpets. Testing isnt necessary if you can see or smell mold that is confirmation enough to call a professional and begin the remediation process. Testing for mold in the house may be necessary if requested by a health professional or needed for legal purposes, such as a lawsuit with a landlord. Another reason to consider testing is if you arent able to see or smell mold in your home but are having unexplained symptoms associated with mold. Always follow the instructions provided with a test kit , but this is generally what to expect:
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Check Your Petri Dish
After 48 hours, check your petri dish for signs of mold growth. If you do not see mold, wait another 24 hours and check again. If you still dont see mold, wait again for 24 hours and check one last time. If you do not see mold growth after 96 hours, your test did not detect any mold. If you do see mold on your test plate, you should take additional steps to remove the mold.
Dont Want To Use Chemicals Heres How To Test For Mold In Your Home Naturally
If youre concerned about the effects of harmful chemicals when testing for mold in the house, worry not. Testing for mold doesnt use any chemicals, and kits are non-toxic.
In fact, the main thing you should be worried about when testing for mold is the mold itself. If you are collecting direct samples of mold using the swab technique, wear gloves and a mask to reduce your exposure to the mold.
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Mold Illness: What It Is And How You Know If You Have It
Mold. You may not be able to see or smell it, yet it may be growing in your home and the reason you feel sick. Mold poisoning may be impacting your health. How do you know? In this blog, I want to cover mold illness and who is susceptible. In future blogs, Ill cover what to do about it.
Most likely your regular doctor wont be much help. Conventional medicine doesnt really believe that mold exposure is a problem. Plus it can be difficult to diagnose someone with mold toxicity it can mimic many other conditions and symptoms are nonspecific.
Treatment For Mold Exposure:
The best treatment is to avoid places that trigger your allergic reactions. To put you at ease, your doctor may suggest the following:
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What Causes Mold Sickness
The toxins in your system from breathing in mold spores add to the total amount of toxicity in your body. We call this the Total Body Burden. When your burden is high, you start experiencing symptoms many which are seemingly unrelated.
For most people, toxins get flushed out from the body when eliminating waste.
For some, the toxic load is so high that its too much for the body to eliminate them all efficiently. For others, they may have poor detoxification processes or they may even recycle or reabsorb these mycotoxins back, as the body tries to eliminate them. Genetics plays a huge role in this difference from person to person
In short, multiple symptoms happen because, as we say in environmental medicine genetics points the gun, and then the environment pulls the trigger.
Products And Tools Youll Need To Test For Mold In Your Home
The only thing you need to test for mold at home is a test kit. In addition to the ones previously mentioned, there are several options available:
- Pro-Lab Mold Test Kit: This kit includes three tests. Your sample can be tested for an additional $40 fee, with results delivered by e-mail or via the companys app.
- MoldCheck Multi-Test Kit: This kit includes supplies to perform ten tests, which is great for an entire home or monitoring an ongoing infestation. However, there is no lab testing option, so you will need to find your own if you need identification.
- ImmunoLytics Mold Screening Test Kit: Perform eight tests with this kit. Each plate can be tested for $33 each.
- My Mold Detective: If you are looking for a more advanced mold monitoring option, the My Mold Detective is a reusable air sampling pump that collects samples in just five minutes. The device comes with four sampling cassettes that can be tested in a lab for $35 each.
- My Mold Detective Additional Samples: The My Mold Detective can be used again and again, so order as many samples as you need to keep tabs on your mold problem.
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Get On A Mold Detox Diet
After ensuring that youve gotten rid of the source, you will then want to detox yourself from the lingering spores in your own body. This process follows the principles of my cellular healing diet approach, and includes removing inflammatory foods . For inspiration on how to cook cellular healing diet approved food, you can view my detox recipes here. You can also see our clean eating meal plan.
Mold Toxicity: How To Diagnose And Treat Mold Exposure For Good
Have you ever left a piece of bread out on your kitchen counter for too long?
If so, you probably saw some blue-ish, green, and grey hairy spots begin to grow. Never mind that sandwich for lunch
The culprit: mold.
Mold is a fungus that grows through filaments called hyphae. Different types of mold vary in color, shape, and size. But they all have one thing in common they all need moisture to grow.
Toxic mold can grow indoors and outdoors and can lead to mold-related allergies and illnesses. For some people exposure to mold can lead to a mold illness and could also eventually lead to mold toxicity . Does everyone exposed to mold react the same? The answer is no! Some people are more susceptible to the effects of mold than others. This is why it is possible for only 1 or 2 household members to have health issues secondary to mold when everyone seems fine.
If you suspect youve been exposed to mold, you may have asked yourself questions like
What are common ways you can be exposed to mold?
How can you test your home for mold toxicity?
What should you do if youre experiencing mold toxicity symptoms?
Ill share the functional medicine approach to answering these questions below!
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How To Treat Mold Toxicity In The Body
Is mold toxicity reversible? Yes, but to recover from mold illness, you need to support your bodys natural detoxification and drainage systems. Its also beneficial to support your immune system, thyroid gland, mitochondria, and oxygen status. Several supplements help with these aspects.
Here are some top supplement strategies to help with your mold cleanse.
Complete Mold Toxicity Test + 30
30 Minute Health Coaching Consultation Included
Are you often congested or feel that your sinuses are blocked? Do you experience sensitivity to light or swings in your mood or appetite? If you find yourself telling people you have seasonal allergies all year long, harmful mycotoxins in your environment could be to blame.
Mycotoxins are metabolites produced by fungi like mold and can infest your home, vehicle or workspace. They are one of the most common environmental pollutants you are exposed to on a daily basis and they could be draining your health without you realizing it. This easy, at-home lab test will scan your body to determine the presence of potentially harmful mycotoxins so that you can get to the root cause of why youre feeling unwell.
Collection Method: Urine Sample
*US law prohibits shipment of lab products to New York State, Rhode Island, and Kansas
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Diy Home Test Kit For Mold
Home test kits tend to be the least expensive form of testing a home for mold. It should be noted that not all home test kits are the same. Some home test kits are designed to only determine whether or not mold is present on surfaces while others are designed to detect a mold presence in the air.
When you pick up a home test kit to test for the presence of mold, youll want to start by testing the areas of the home most commonly tested for mold. These areas include basements, bathrooms, kitchens, and crawl spaces as these areas are most known for accumulating moisture- something that mold needs in order to thrive. Once you have identified the areas of the home that you are going to prioritize testing, take samples of the air and affected areas. After doing this, you will send your samples into a lab for testing. We might be partial, but we GUARANTEE our tests are not only easiest to follow and do yourself, but come with better analyses and customer service, than any other on the market. to learn about our best selling surface test!
Air Oasis Air Sanitizers
Air Oasis air sanitizers work differently than HEPA filters. They use a technology developed by NASA called advanced hydration photocatalytic oxidation to destroy mold, bacteria, and other microorganisms with ultraviolet light and a catalyst. We have a few of the Air Angel units in smaller rooms, as well as an AO3000 in the main living area. Important note: I currently recommend running the AO units only when you are not in the rooms, and turning them off when you enter. This is due to the small amounts of ozone that they release. Though these levels are well below the recommended limit according to AOs website, I prefer to be cautious. I also recommend using a HEPA/charcoal filter along with the AO devices, rather than using them on their own.
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Hiring A Professional Mold Testing Service
Those who dont mind spending a little more money should consider investing in a professional mold testing service for their home mold test. These services are completed by experts who will take samples on your behalf, identify the degree of infestation and mold type, and extend recommendations on how to take care of the problem.
Help Your Body Get Rid Of Mycotoxins
Note: you have to get rid of mold in your environment before you can hope to successfully detox from mycotoxins. If you dont, youll just keep accumulating new mycotoxins as you get rid of old ones. You may stall mold poisoning, but you wont start to get rid of it especially considering that it takes 35 days for your kidneys and bladder to flush out the more stubborn mycotoxins.
Once youve gotten rid of the source of mold, its time to get your body back into fighting shape. Mycotoxins mostly target your mitochondria, which explains why mold poisoning affects brain and heart function more than anything else .
To recover from mold toxicity, you want to boost your mitochondria as much as possible, while also clearing out lingering mycotoxins. These mold recovery therapies will help:
Mold exposure can be incredibly frustrating. It can make you feel like you have no control over your environment, your health, your weight, your emotions your life in general. If youre dealing with mold, dont despair. These tools can help you get rid of mold and mycotoxins and return to your healthy, high-performing self.
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How To Detox Your Body From Mold
Mold is an insidious problem that is a growing concern in the modern health world. This mold isnt the kind that grows on food, but rather the biotoxic black mold that grows behind the walls and floorboards, and wreaks havoc on the human body. This type of mold is a silent killer that is triggering a host of hormonal problems, and driving autoimmune disease. Today we will explore the symptoms, how to test for and safely remove mold from your home, as well as your body.
Is All Mold Toxic
Mold is not the only pathogen that grows from water damage. Fungal fragments, spores, mycotoxins, bacteria, mycobacteria, actinomycetes, VOCs, and other biotoxins can also form in damp buildings. These pathogens combine to produce a toxic soup that can lead to a multi-systemic and multi-symptomatic illness.
Not all mold is toxic, but many mold species from water-damaged buildings produce mycotoxins. It is the indoor concentration of mycotoxins and the rest of the toxic soup that can contribute to chronic debilitating symptoms.
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Most Common Symptoms Of Mold Toxicity
Mold toxicity can cause a multitude of different symptoms. Three however common symptoms are almost always present.
Other symptoms of mold toxicity may include:
- Musculoskeletal symptoms including muscle weakness, achiness, joint pain, and morning stiffness.
- Urinary symptoms including urinary incontinence, increased thirst, and electrolyte abnormalities leading to muscle cramps.
- Neurological symptoms including numbness, tingling, and unusual skin sensation where one side of the face becomes numb or even paralysed.
- Digestive problems including loose stools.
- Vision issues including red eyes and blurry vision. Sometimes, patients will have night sweats.
- General symptoms might include sudden appetite swings, body temperature changes, and weight gain, especially in women.
Mold toxicity can produce some unusual symptoms including:
- Ice pick pain A sharp, stabbing pain that can be anywhere in the body, but its frequently in the head. A headache that feels like being stuck with an ice pick.
- Static shocks
- People with mold toxicity often complain about the watches they wear stop working for no apparent reason.
Start With Diet Lifestyle And Gut Health
Sometimes, symptoms that are associated with mold illness might actually be caused by poor gut health or inflammation. Making changes to diet and lifestyle can resolve some or all symptoms, potentially eliminating the need for mycotoxin testing.
Its also easier to test for and treat mold toxicity if results are not confounded by gut health symptoms. Some important factors to consider are:
- Diet: Anti-inflammatory and gut-healing diets that focus on whole foods have been shown to improve symptoms like fatigue and brain fog [11, 12, 13
- Trusted SourcePubMedGo to source].
Another reason to start with your diet and lifestyle is that these factors might actually influence your mycotoxin test results. Many mycotoxin tests work by measuring the toxins that your body is eliminating. However, if diet and lifestyle components are not in place, your body may be less capable of excreting toxins.
This can mean not only worse health and symptoms but also that testing may not reflect your bodys true ability to rid itself of mycotoxins.
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The Importance Of Acting Fast
If your home test for mold indicates a toxic mold presence, it is vital that you act fast. While there are thousands of different forms of mold, not all harmful, toxic mold presents a huge problem and shouldnt be taken lightly. If your home test shows that a toxic variety of mold is present in your home, delay in acting to eliminate the mold leaves time for you and your family to be contaminated from the spores.