Mold and Your Health

Health effects of mold
What do you know about mold?

Did you know that there are different types of mold? What exactly is mold?

Molds are microscopic organisms, commonly known as fungi.

Did you know that mold growth can take place both indoors and outdoors? The mold growth that occurs indoors should always be avoided. But if you suspect a mold problem indoors, the property should be inspected and then properly remediated immediately.

Mold can grow anywhere there is moisture, including hidden areas in your home. The mold feeds and destroys whatever it grows on. Mold grows on surfaces such as walls, ceilings, sheetrock, or doors, which can generally cause discoloration and can often be identified in green, grey, brown, or black patches.

Is mold dangerous or a hazard to your health? Yes, there are various health risks linked to mold exposure, which consist of breathing in spores from the air, or skin contact from handling anything where mold is growing.

Did you know that not all molds are visual? So how can you be aware of mold growth in your home? If you have had flooding, leaky roofs, broken pipes, plumbing leaks, sewer back-ups or have any unusual odors coming from a specific area you can be a victim of mold exposure. So should you be concerned? Yes, if indoor mold contamination is extensive it can cause very high and persistent airborne spore exposures. Persons exposed to high spore levels can become sensitized and develop allergies to the mold or develop other health problems.

One of the many health risks caused by mold exposure is skin rashes and/or skin irritation. (An independent study shows that 60% of skin rashes or irritations such as eczema, emphazema and psoriasis are caused by direct/indirect mold exposure). According to the World Health Organization approximately one third of the worlds buildings are unfit for human use due to severe indoor pollution. The U.S government estimates that Americans are exposed to over 200 different types of mold on a daily basis.
Another independent study shows that approximately 45% of miscarriages that occur are due to or related to inhaling toxins like mold (example: Stachybotrys chartarum) commonly found in water damaged homes. Molds produce health effects through inflammation, allergy, or infection. Allergic reactions are most common following mold exposure. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, regular exposure to polluted air, including airborne mold spores can stunt children’s lungs, leading to a lifetime of reduced respiratory capacity.

This study, the longest and most comprehensive of it’s time, followed a group of 1,759 school children in Southern California from as young as fourth grade until high school graduation. Children breathing the polluted air were five times more likely to grow up with weakened lungs, and this was true with all children including the children with preexisting conditions like asthma.

How much mold can make me sick?

It depends. For some people, a relatively small number of mold spores can trigger an asthma attack or lead to other health problems. For other persons, symptoms may occur only when exposure levels are much higher. Some people may have more severe symptoms or become ill more rapidly than others: Individuals with existing respiratory conditions, such as allergies, chemical sensitivities, or asthma, weak immune systems such as people with cancer on chemotherapy, and so forth; as well as infants and young children, the elderly and pregnant woman. Nonetheless, indoor mold growth is extremely unsanitary and undesirable.

Basically if you can see or smell mold in your home, you must take steps to identify and eliminate the excess moisture and mold growth present. While you may dismiss the discoloration and/or odor as another unworthy expense, it is actually taking a toll on you and your loved ones. Having a proper inspection and remediation is taking a step closer to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

So how can you prevent mold growth in your home?

There are a few things you can do to keep your home safe. Keep the humidity level of the property between 40% and 60%. Use an air conditioner or a dehumidifier during the months of humid climate. Be sure the home has adequate ventilation, including exhaust fans in kitchens and bathrooms. Do not lay carpet in bathrooms or basements. Remove or replace previously soaked carpets and upholstery.

Mold remediation and water damage prevention

We use state of the art equipment for testing and remediation, special toxic cleansing gear and the EPA-registered disinfectants to rid the property of health-hazardous molds, both toxic and non-toxic.  Highly experienced staff should be professionally trained, state certified technicians that are dedicated to providing premium service. They should also carry the equipment to provide you with the highest air quality and purification to prevent mold growth as well as a division that involves water proofing for water damage. Therefore , a full service provider should be able to guarantee a clean safe home and environment for you and everyone around you.
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