Have you felt under the weather lately? What about allergic reactions that are out of the ordinary?
You may be at risk for a toxic, invisible substance that has made its way into your home – black mold.
Black mold can be sneaky, going undetected in various places such as workplaces, homes, and public buildings. Also, damp conditions are known for promoting black mold growth. We’ll inform you about black mold, its effect on you, and preventative measures to keep your home safe.
What is Black Mold?
If you are not familiar with black mold, it’s a substance that’s in the “toxigenic” category, meaning it produces toxins and fungi. Despite the name “black mold,” it can appear in various colors.
Black mold can be visible or invisible. It’s often spotted in humid areas, such as basements, inside drywalls, small spaces, or areas susceptible to water damage. The most critical places in your home are the bathroom and kitchen, where water and improper ventilation occur, causing black mold to accumulate.
In the shower, it can disguise itself as mildew on a shower curtain. However, the deadliest forms of black mold are invisible and in the air. As a result, serious health problems may occur due to increased exposure to this toxigenic substance.
Side Effects of Black Mold
Did you know that the toxins from black mold can have severe effects on your central nervous system and immune system? Your body’s function is compromised, resulting in memory loss, critical thinking problems, and damage to the frontal cortex.
Depending on the person, different reactions may occur. For example, age and health are factors, resulting in different responses to black mold. The elderly, children, those with respiratory issues, and weak immune systems may have adverse effects from the mold.
Common physical reactions to black mold include:
• Asthma or general breathing problems.
• Itchy or watery eyes.
• Common cold symptoms.
• Signs similar to allergic reactions such as a runny nose, coughing, and aggravated throat.
Black mold may also cause severe symptoms, such as:
• Sinus infections.
• Serious respiratory problems.
• Loss of the senses, such as the ability to smell.
• Mental illness, such as depression.
Because of its consequences to the central nervous system, black mold can cause headaches, difficulty concentrating, reduced attention span, and dizziness.
Infants and children are at high risk for black mold toxicity. Their immune systems are not fully developed, resulting in abnormalities in their growth. Also, infants inhaling black mold can result in dire consequences, with the possibility of death. In cases with extreme exposure to black mold, the results can be fatal.
An excellent way to prevent black mold is to do an inspection visually. However, a musty odor is a good indicator of black mold. Also, the two leading causes of black mold are improper ventilation and humidity.
You are likely to find black mold or possible growth in the following areas:
• Home appliances
• Flooded or leaky areas such as the roof, condensation areas, dripping pipes, ceilings, etc.
The quickest course of action is to apply bleach in spots that you see discoloration or black mold. A humidifier will take out the moisture in places like the basement or an area with very little ventilation. Inspect your air ducts and filters as well, as black mold can accumulate and grow in unsuspecting places.
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