Monday, April 15, 2024

What To Do When You Have Mold

Removing Mold In The Kitchen

Do You Have Mold In Your Body? The 3 Tests You Need To Find Out! with Evan H. Hirsch, MD

Spotted mold in your kitchen? Scrub any hard surfaces with one of the solutions mentioned above, taking care to thoroughly rinse any food prep areas after. You may need to replace porous surfaces, such as wooden cabinets, that are contaminated.

To prevent mold and practice adequate kitchen maintenance, open your windows to improve ventilation and run the hood vent when cooking and cleaning. Wipe water from hard surfaces, and fix leaky faucets as soon as possible. Always make sure your tableware and serving dishes are dry before storing them to keep mold from proliferating in cabinets. Scrub mold from surfaces as soon as it appears, then be sure to dry the area to prevent it from spreading.

What Are The Health Impacts Of Mold Contamination

Not all mold is the same. On top of that, everyone responds differently to mold. Some people may experience no symptoms, while others can experience life-threatening allergic reactions. Those who already suffer from asthma, allergies, or immune problems are more likely to experience symptoms when exposed to mold.

According to the World Health Organization , inhaling or touching mold can lead to allergic reactions . Symptoms include:

  • Nasal congestion
  • Additionally, some mold can emit volatile chemicals that may impact your nervous system.

    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

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    Differences Between Mold And Mildew

    While mold and mildew are both fungi that need water, oxygen, and food in order to live and survive, they differ in a number of ways. Mold tends to have a higher profile and can even become fuzzy, while mildew is usually flat. Mold exhibits darker colors such as deep green and black mildew may begin as white, then turn brown or gray.

    Directions For Removing Mold From A Cement Wall

    What to Do if You Have These 5 Black Mold Symptoms

    Before removing black mold from a cement wall, dampen the moldy area well with a rag and plain water, Weitz advises. This will keep the mold spores from disbursing through the air. Next, he says you should try to remove as much of the mold as possible with a scrub brush and non-ammonia soap or detergent.

    Weitz believes in the power of bleach and says it will remove any leftover mold and stop future mold growth. He instructs readers to add 1½ cups bleach to 1 gallon of water in a pail. Wet the surface well with this mixture, letting it soak in for about 15 minutes. Then, scrub the area with the scrub brush and rinse well with clean, clear water.

    He recommends repeating the bleach steps until all visible mold is gone. Next, use a fan and/or dehumidifier to dry the area well. If any moisture is left, Weitz says your wall is subject to new mold growth.

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    Surface Changes And Deterioration

    Your walls appearance can change significantly if theres mold growth behind them. In addition to discoloration and stains, your walls may deteriorate. Paint or wallpaper can crack, peel, or bubble because of moisture and mold growth. Furthermore, your walls may become warped or even bow or bulge when theres a water issue, which often leads to mold growth.

    Common Types Of House Mold

    Wondering what types of mold are the most common in houses and which ones you should be concerned about? Lets discuss a few of the most common types of household mold now.

    • Cladosporium Cladosporium is one of the most common household molds. It usually grows in a greenish-brown colony, but can also be nearly black in color. It is rarely harmful unless you have a mold allergy, but may cause minor issues like toenail or fingernail infections.
    • Penicillium Penicillium is sometimes called green mold, as it is usually dark green in color. It tends to grow in large, consistent patches on the walls. As the name suggests, penicillin is derived from some kinds of this mold. However, some kinds of penicillium mold may be toxic to humans and animals.
    • Aspergillus This type of mold is usually greenish-white in color, and may be more raised with a more cloudy appearance than other types of mold. It is not harmful, unless you have a weakened immune system, in which case it could infect the lungs or sinuses.
    • Alternaria Alternaria mold is usually greenish-white, but can also appear in black patches, so its sometimes confused with black mold. Alternaria can be a factor in exacerbating asthma, particularly for those who may have mold allergies.

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    How Can You Tell If Mold Is Making You Sick

    It can be hard to distinguish common mold exposure symptoms from those of an infection or a more serious condition. Many of these illnesses share a lot of the same side effects, and you may not be able to tell that youre sick until several days after exposure.

    While most healthy people may only experience the temporary symptoms listed above, those with more compromised or weakened immune systems are at a greater risk of becoming sick after mold exposure. People in this group include the elderly, pregnant women, babies, young children and those with chronic health conditions.

    There are a few serious illnesses that can be caused by mold exposure, but each usually has its own telltale symptoms that separates it from the others. Remember: the most common sign of an infection is a fever, so check your temperature regularly if you fear you may be sick.

    These are just a few examples of illnesses that can be caused by molds:

    • Aspergillosis an infection that typically comes after exposure to molds in the aspergillus family. These molds are often found in decaying vegetation, such as dead leaves, compost piles and stored grain. People who have gone through chemotherapy, had an organ transplant or have compromised lungs are the most likely demographic to contract aspergillosis. Common side effects include coughing , fever, chest pain, difficulty breathing, chills, shock or kidney/liver problems.

    Mold In Swimming Pools

    9 Signs You Have Toxic Mold In Your Home

    Mold is a naturally occurring substance in nature. You cannot avoid it. That being said, you can control mold growth on your property to keep it at safe levels that occur naturally and not create an issue with elevated growths in your swimming pool for example.

    Mold grows in swimming pools because its a great source of moisture and organic materials for food. These plants will grow naturally. Chlorine and other pool chemicals do not promote mold growth as some pool owners may have read. They occur naturally. Mold is resistant to pool cleaning treatments that are used to treat other contaminants therefore a different approach is needed to get rid of mold in your pool.

    Preventing mold in your swimming pool is much easier and more cost-effective than trying to remove a mold growth that is colonized. First and foremost is to open the lid of your pool for a few hours every day. Sunlight kills molds that grow inside your pool, so this is a natural defense.

    Next up is to physically clean your pool and all its fixtures at least once a week. Scrubbing the deck, rails, ladders, filtration systems, and anything else that has regular contact with your pool.

    Ladders and rails are very important as they become dirty very quickly from constant contact with people.

    Oxidizing products can also combat mold growth in your swimming pool. Mold needs oxygen to grow, and oxidizing products impede oxygen content in the water of the pool so that mold cannot survive.

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    The Journey From Outdoor Mold Spore To Indoor Mold Problem

    Whether out enjoying a hike or inside examining the grocery stores produce section, we are constantly transporting and breathing in tiny mold spores. An open window, a family pet or even your sneakers can bring outdoor spores to a new homeyour home or workplace.

    These mold spores can be harmless. However, problems arise if the spores come in contact with a moisture source. Moisture lets the spores grow into mold that could affect health.

    First: Identify Where The Mold Is

    Ways to test for mold vary depending on its location. A few ways to check for mold include:

  • Pinpointing the sources of the odor: Start by pulling the air out of the room by placing a fan in a window. Then crawl around and sniff for musty or earthy smells near cracks.
  • Check around areas and sources of moisture: Areas that appear to have water damage can potentially harbor mold. A good way to check is to use a moisture meter to detect elevated humidity
  • After youve identified the location of the mold, there are two more steps you need to take: clean the mold and eliminate the moisture problem. It is commonly recommended that you wash down surfaces with a bleach solution to kill the mold.

    Read Also: How To Get Rid Of Mold Spots On Bathroom Ceiling

    Why Do We Need A Mold Inspection Or Assessment

    • Mold spores are microscopically small, we cannot see them with the naked eye, we do not know they are there or has infected our house. But we can smell them.
    • Mold only becomes visible at approximattely 27,000 spores, you can have a mold infection in your house and not know it
    • Thirdly, they are sneaky, mold can grow anywhere, and mostly in dark places where we cannot see them.
    • The other and most important reason is health. Mold is affecting our health or creating a health concern. When mold spores are present in large quantities , they are a health hazard or concern to humans.

    What Mold Looks Like

    how do you if you have black mold

    Molds are a type of fungus and can look like their fungal cousins, mushrooms and yeasts. Outdoors, molds can be seen gobbling up the dead organic matter on decomposing surfaces like fallen leaves and rotting logs indoors, house mold thrives in wet, humid environments like bathrooms and basements or anywhere that has recently flooded. There are thousands of types of mold, and their appearance can vary depending on the type of mold and where its growing.

    The most common indoor molds are Cladosporium, Penicillium, Aspergillus, and Alternaria, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Black mold, or Stachybotrys chartarum , is also sometimes found in homes and other buildings. This greenish-black growth can grow on fiberboard, paper, dust, and lint, particularly in areas that may have recently flooded or suffered other types of water damage. While black mold can certainly look scary, the CDC says that Stachybotrys chartarum isnt any more harmful than other types of mold.

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    Beat Your Allergies Now

    When over-the-counter medications and prevention arent working, its easy to get frustrated. Allergies can be miserable, especially when you cant find relief. Thats why Wyndly provides sublingual immunotherapy drops to bring allergy sufferers long-term relief.

    Wyndly makes the path to fixing your allergies as simple and pain-free as possible. Our doctors will create a personalized treatment plan for you based on your allergy history and needs. We can send you allergy drops that can be taken at home without doctor supervision unlike allergy shots. Allergy drops are one of the safest and most effective ways to find long-term and often permanent relief from your mold allergies.

    You Visibly See Mold Spores

    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.

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    Signs Symptoms And Solutions Of Mold Contamination

    Mold has been living on our planet for millions of years, and there is always some mold everywhere. The infamous toxic moldwhich refers to the varieties that release mycotoxins into the airare the largest cause for concern. However, there are many more types of insidious mold that can cause a range of damaging health effectsvia allergens and irritants.

    Condensation On Windows Window Frames And Sills

    9 Signs You Have Toxic Mold In Your Home
    • Promptly repair any leaks.
    • Lower the indoor moisture levels.
    • Use exhaust bathroom fans and a kitchen range hood.
    • Keep window coverings open to move the warm air over the windows .
    • Keep baseboards or heating vents clear of furniture to make sure the heat flows.
    • Dry your window frames and sills daily to keep water from dripping and causing mould to grow.
    • Leave interior doors open for good air and heat flow.
    • Unplug and remove humidifiers.

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    Is Mold In Water Dangerous

    Mold in water can be very dangerous if not remediated or improperly removed. As I mentioned above in the previous section, the effects of encountering mold in water can be very detrimental to the health of your family. Both white and black mold spores can create a wide range of health issues.

    The health issues range from sinus issues i.e., a runny nose and sneezing to more serious symptoms including respiratory and breathing issues as well as headaches and even severe depression. If you are having any of these symptoms and are having trouble pinpointing what is causing them, contact Mold Busters to schedule an inspection and testing visit to your home to make sure your home is safe from mold.

    If You Have Mold In Your Home

    Mold can look like spots. It can be many different colors, and it can smell musty. If you see or smell mold, you should remove it. You do not need to know the type of mold.

    If mold is growing in your home, you need to clean up the mold and fix the moisture problem. Mold can be removed from hard surfaces with household products, soap and water, or a bleach solution of no more than 1 cup of household laundry bleach in 1 gallon of water.

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    How Can You Test For Mold

    There are many ways in which you can test for mold on your own. You can purchase an at-home mold test from almost all hardware stores. However, you should be wary of the accuracy of these tests. These tests have been known to give false results. In some cases, unopened test kits have even been moldy upon purchase.

    Further, testing for mold is something that should be done by a properly certified, experienced mold inspector/hygienist as it is quite complicated or even dangerous. If you do not know much about mold, you may not read the results correctly. There is also the possibility of test result contamination if you do not follow the correct chain of custody during the testing process.

    If your home was exposed to water damage and you believe it might contain mold, the best way to find out is through a professional inspection and testing. Unlike at-home tests, certified professional mold inspectors can accurately detect where the mold is growing, the source of it, and the severity of mold growth.

    This is where we come in.

    GPMI is a professional mold inspection and testing service in southern California. Our team of mold inspectors is all ACAC certified and specializes solely in mold testing and mold inspection rather than removal. We only use unbiased 3rd party laboratories to avoid any conflict of interest and provide the most superior mold testing services in Southern California.

    We offer various types of mold tests:

    Mold Poisoning Symptoms In Humans

    Do You Have Mold in Your House?

    Mold poisoning can cause a number of different symptoms, depending on the age of the affected individual, the strength of their immune system, and whether or not they have a pre-existing mold allergy. Here are a few of the most common signs and symptoms of mold poisoning in humans.

    • A stuffy or runny nose
    • Sinus issues or infections
    • Worsening or development of asthma
    • Wheezing or difficulty breathing
    • Skin itchiness, redness, or discomfort
    • Fever and shortness of breath
    • Rashes

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    Moisture & Mold Damage To Floor Beneath The Toilet Tank

    If condensation is severe, water will drip from the holding tank and saturate the floor. The level of damage, if any, depends entirely on the flooring material. Well sealed tile will withstand constant water exposure. Hardwood or laminate flooring will fail relatively quickly.

    Mold Under Toilet

    Mold Under Toilet on Flooring

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