Black Mold Health Effects
Apart from the above-described black mold health risks, prolonged exposure to the toxic microorganisms can also cause severe damage to internal organs.
Toxic black mold spores can be easily breathed in, ingested, or absorbed through a persons skin or eyes. Once the mycotoxins find their way into the bloodstream, they can cause a number of circulatory symptoms and vascular problems, such as irregular heartbeat, heart inflammation, heart damage, low blood pressure, problems with blood clotting, internal or external hemorrhaging, etc.
How Can I Remove Black Mold
If youre looking to get rid of the black mold yourself, here are some pointers to do it properly:
- Clean the area with soap, water, and a diluted bleach formula. Repeat this process for a few days thereafter to get any potentially missed spores in the area
- Replace appliances, furniture or parts of your house that have been affected
- Cover any susceptible walls or corners with mold-preventable paint
Be aware that black mold can spread quickly and invisibly. If you do not feel comfortable removing it yourself, or dont feel equipped to do so, consider reaching out to professionals to do it for you.
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What Should You Do If You Have Been Exposed To Black Mold
. Also to know is, what should you do if you are exposed to black mold?
Also, a solution of warm, distilled water and saline can help rinse your nasal passages of mold spores and remove congestion. Over-the-counter medications. Antihistamines, such as cetirizine or loratadine , reduce your immune system response, minimizing airway inflammation.
Likewise, how much mold exposure is dangerous? 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.
Similarly one may ask, is exposure to black mold dangerous?
Based on current research, black mold exposure is no more dangerous than any other type of mold exposure. It is impossible to avoid exposure to mold the spores are almost everywhere around us. In high amounts or in people with allergies, exposure to any mold may cause allergy symptoms.
How do you know if mold is making you sick?
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:
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Why Can Mold Be Dangerous
No matter what color the mold may be, it is important to remove it because some individuals can have symptoms from living with mold in the home. For example, inhaling or touching the mold can cause an allergic reaction. Mold can worsen asthma or lung problems for people with sensitivity to mold. Others may have no reaction to mold so it only exists as unsightly home damage.
How Can I Check For Mold
Its best to hire a professional to help you identify and remove mold, especially if youre allergic or vulnerable to it.
You should also consider hiring help if the mold covers more than 10 square feet or if its hidden behind wallpaper, ceiling tiles, or other areas.
Here are some steps for identifying and removing mold.
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Can I Remove Black Mold Myself
If the black mold growth in your home is small enough for you to treat alone, a simple mixture of bleach and water can help. Add one cup of bleach to one gallon of water and apply it to the moldy spots. Apply the cleaner to the mold spot and scrub away the growth. Be sure to dry the area thoroughly when youre done.
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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.
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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.
Contact A Specialist That Handles Black Mold To:
- Get a free assessment of your situation, including a complete inspection of your home in order to locate all areas of mold growth.
- Verify if the mold in your home is in fact black mold, so you can let your physician know exactly what substances youÃ¢ve been exposed to.
- Get customized information that will help you do the job right if you decide not to hire a specialist.
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Severe Symptoms Of Black Mold Exposure
Even though the initial symptoms of mold exposure are not very serious, they can develop into more serious problems if the mold is left untreated. Some of the more advanced symptoms may include: chronic fatigue, dizziness, skin rashes, digestive issues, diarrhea, vomiting and nausea, fertility problems, cancer, depression, ulcers, Fibromyalgia, and even death.
Keep in mind that you may not experience every symptom that is listed, because mold affects different people in different ways. Some people only experience a few of the symptoms that are listed, but for almost everyone the symptoms get worse over time.
Once these more serious health problems occur and medical treatments are not effective, some doctors will suggest that you look for mold problems in your home. But, the problem is that many medical professionals donât initially attribute the health problems with mold exposure, so it may take a long time to come to that conclusion.
Can Black Mold Spread From House To House
Yes. If you have had mold in your old house and youre moving into another space, it is possible to cross contaminate this new environment.
Because mold spores are not visible to the naked eye, it is hard to tell which surfaces are contaminated. Therefore, the mold has to be completely cleaned before you renovate or move to a new home.
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Identifying Mold In Your Home
- Appearance or dark spots or clusters. Look for spots or clustered growths, especially in warm, moist rooms.
- Musty smell. You may be able to identify mold by a musty smell.
- Allergies or asthma. If you experience asthma attacks or allergy symptoms in your home, that may also indicate theres mold.
- Potential causes. Look for causes of mold growth, like a leak, water damage, lack of ventilation, or old food, papers, or wood.
Spray With Distilled White Vinegar
All types of vinegar are acidic, and acids can slowly break down the structure of mold and kill it. Distilled white vinegar is non-toxic but acts much more slowly than chlorine bleach or hydrogen peroxide. While it will kill the mold, the discoloration and stains may remain and require additional scrubbing with a household cleaner.
Distilled white vinegar can be used safely on most porous and non-porous surfaces. Pour undiluted white vinegar into a spray bottle and spray onto the moldy surface. Let it work for an hour. Rinse the area thoroughly with clean water and allow the surface to dry. Use hydrogen peroxide or a diluted chlorine bleach solution to remove any remaining traces of discoloration.
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What To Do If Your Baby Is Exposed To Black Mold
The arrival of a new member of the family can be very exciting. However, having a sick baby isnt fun at all. Its normal for babies to get the common cold. They may exhibit symptoms such as runny noses, headaches, and much more from time to time. However, when these symptoms are present consistently, and the medicine the doctor prescribed doesnt work, its time to consider looking for the culprit in your basement.
Basement Mold and Your Baby:
Babies are more susceptible to illnesses. This is because their immune systems are still developing. They are therefore easy targets. Parents and caregivers should therefore do their best to minimize the level of exposure of infants to disease causing agents.
If you have a baby in your home, you should be concerned about black mold in basement. This mold will have a profound impact of the quality of air in the entire home. Mold spores dispersed in the basement are carried by air that rises through the home. Your baby will therefore be exposed to these spores.
Inhaling black mold spores exposes babies to mycotoxins. These are toxic substances produced by the mold. These can have harmful effects on babies including causing pulmonary hemorrhage.
Babies that survive the adverse effects of mold in infancy are likely to be followed by the effects of the mycotoxins for a lifetime. They are likely to develop allergies as well as conditions such as asthma later on in life.
Can I Stay In My House With Black Mold
Mold is a common and often overlooked household problem. While it may seem harmless, mold is one of the most toxic substances you can encounter in your home environment. It is estimated that 4.6 million people in the U.S. have asthma that can be attributed to mold exposure. Black mold is considered the most dangerous type of mold overgrowth and can be severe enough to cause illness.
Can I Stay in My House With Black Mold?
It is recommended that you stay somewhere clear of mold spores until all black mold has been removed from your home. This is because black mold is toxic and can cause immediate health issues and result in long-term consequences.
What causes black mold?
Toxic mold is created by volatile organic compounds , which stem from mold spores. VOCs interfere with the respiratory and nervous system.
Black Mold Affects Emotions and Psychological Health
It is possible that being exposed to black mold over an extended period of time can lead to depression and anxiety. The toxins found in mold can build up inside the body, and it can also create brain fog, insomnia, and the inability to focus. Even after the mold is gone, the symptoms may linger for a long time as the body recovers from the toxins.
Black Mold Affects Physical Health
Black Mold Symptoms
Get Professional Help to Remove Black Mold
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How To Get Rid Of Mold
There are plenty of DIY mold removal options for you on the web some more effective than others. These may suffice if the problem is minor. After DIY treatment, it may be good to have an air quality test taken to determine the effectiveness of your work.
If the problem is more than minor, DIY methods will likely only remove the appearance of mold for a short time. If the problem is more serious, the best approach is to hire a certified and reputable local mold remediation company.
Most mold remediation companies will recommend demolition of the infected part of your home to get rid of mold, so keep in mind that you might have additional expenses to restore a portion of your house. Besides that, the process might take several days.
If you are looking into demolition-free mold removal, then look into the companies that use a dry fog technique. When properly done, this method not only kills mold without demolition to your home, but it also takes less than a day to complete.
What Are The Symptoms Of Black Mold Exposure In Children
The first symptom to watch out for is allergic reactions. Children who are allergic to black mold may begin to sneeze, have runny noses, itchy eyes, and develop a cough or wheeze.
Respiratory issues can worsen when in contact with mold toxins. Asthma sufferers can display symptoms such as wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath that are further aggravated by black mold.
Black mold exposure can also cause irritant reactions in children prone to health sensitivities, such as skin and eye irritations, itching, rashes, or headaches.
In addition, there are neurological symptoms caused by mold toxins, such as memory problems, anxiety, depression, trembling or shaking, numbness, disorientation, shortened attention span, slow reflexes, and dizziness.
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How To Get Rid Of Black Mold
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.
Mold Around The House
While antihistamines can address many of the symptoms of a mold allergy, they are often not a sufficient standalone response to mold. Antihistamines can have sedating effects on users and adversely interact with other prescription and over-the-counter medications, so it is best not to rely on them entirely. Instead, after identifying signs and symptoms of a mold allergy, work to reduce the presence of mold in your home. This process often involves optimizing air filtration systems, cleaning bathrooms regularly, and making basement living spaces as hypoallergenic as possible by limiting porous surfaces, such as carpeting, where moisture and attendant mold can build up. While it is impossible to eliminate mold exposure, especially outdoors, you can significantly mitigate mold exposure within the home.
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Preventing Mold In Your Home
The best way to keep your family safe from black mold is to prevent it from growing. Since mold grows in damp, dark places, you should aim to improve ventilation and reduce humidity in areas that are prone to mold.
In your bathrooms, for example, you can use a shower squeegee to remove excess water from shower walls and bathroom mirrors. You can also install a vent fan or open a window when showering to allow humidity to leave the room. These steps help reduce the moisture in your bathroom and make it more difficult for black mold to grow.
Make searching for black mold or potential growth areas a part of your spring cleaning routine. The sooner you catch a mold growth, the better chance you have to get rid of it before it causes health problems.
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How Does Black Mold Form
The main reason behind the formation of black mold is moisture, which can be caused by several things, such as, water leakage, lack of proper ventilation, flooding, irregular maintenance, humidifiers, condensation, clogged-up gutters, damp clothes, humid basements, or even water accumulation around the foundation of your house.
Did you know?
Stachybotrys is the 3rd common toxic mold type found in homes we tested?! Find out more exciting mold stats and facts inside our mold statistics page.
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Can You Obtain Workers Compensation If You Were Exposed To Mold In The Workplace
Florida is known to have some of the most humid cities in the United States. Floridas humid climate and frequent heavy rains make the state an ideal environment for mold growth.
Unfortunately, many Floridians underestimate the dangers of mold exposure. The problem of exposure to mold at home and work is often overlooked. What many do not realize is that exposure to mold can be the underlying cause of many serious health conditions and illnesses.
But can you seek workers compensation benefits if you were exposed to black mold in the workplace? Are you eligible to receive workers comp if you can prove that mold exposure caused your injury or illness in Florida?
Signs of Mold Poisoning and Other Conditions Related to Mold Exposure
Prolonged exposure to black mold spores in the workplace can cause a worker to develop mold poisoning. Signs of mold poisoning include:
- Allergic reaction
- Unexplained body pains
- Difficulty breathing
- Respiratory failures
People with asthma, weakened immune systems, and certain lung diseases are more prone to developing mold poisoning.
How to Tell if You Were Exposed to Black Mold in the Workplace?
There are different strains of mold that can grow indoors, which is why it would be difficult to tell if you were exposed to black mold or other dangerous forms of mold that can cause serious illnesses and injuries.
Obtaining Workers Compensation for Mold Exposure at Work