All molds should be eliminated from your house, but all molds are not ‘created equal.’ You must pay attention to the presence of mold and do all you can to remove it before toxic mold destroys your house and your health. The species of molds referred to as ‘toxic molds’ are the ones that produce mycotoxins, a toxic chemical product that can cause death in humans and animals. These molds are members of the fungi family hence the term “myco.”
Among the molds in this category, one of the most dreaded varieties is Stachybotrys chartarum. It is a black, dense mold typically found in abandoned homes, damp basements, or any place that has been moist for some time. While this mold might not cause death, except in cases of very severe reactions to it, it can cause many health problems like difficulty breathing, diarrhea, persistent headaches, and more.
Other mold types can also cause serious problems, so here are the subtle signs you might have a toxic mold in your house.
- Your House Has A Musty Smell
After several attempts to clean your house, you might begin to doubt your cleaning skills because of the musty smell your home seems to exude. It’s not your skills that are the issue. The smell is usually a signal that an area of your house is damp and might be harboring mold. Until you find that area and take care of it, and whatever mold might be growing there, your house will remain a health risk to the people living in it. It’s even worse if there is an aged person in your home.
- Your Eyes Are Teary And Stinging
One symptom of allergic reactions to mold is itchy and teary or watery eyes, says allergist/immunologist, Purvi Parikh, MD, of the Allergy & Asthma Network. Other symptoms include nasal congestion and coughing. If you experience any of the symptoms and suspect it might be mold, track down which rooms or places of your house where you get these reactions.
- You Keep Coughing, But Do Not Have A Cold
As stated earlier, coughing can be a symptom of mold. The spores released by molds can get into your lungs and result in a lingering cough. If you do not have a cold and notice you have a cough, you might be reacting to mold. You might need to see an allergist to confirm, but you should inspect your house for molds.
- Your Asthma Is Acting Up
Mold spores that get into your lungs can trigger an allergic reaction and asthma symptoms. If you notice your asthma is worsening or you keep having asthmatic symptoms when you spend time in certain places in your house, you might have mold in your house. According to a study on asthmatic cases in the US, one in five asthmatic patients became asthmatic due to mold or dampness in houses. The Allergy and Asthmatic Foundation of America has also warned that mold can result in a more severe and rare condition known as bronchopulmonary aspergillosis. This condition is an inflammatory and allergic reaction leading to severe shortness of breath, coughing, and sneezing.
- Your Skin Keeps Tingling
Tingling skin might be the result of allergic reactions to mycotoxins. You might also experience itching or a burning sensation due to allergic reactions to mycotoxins, or even get hives. This is because your body responds by releasing histamine anytime you come in contact with mold. The result of these reactions can be scaly, itchy, and dry skin. If these symptoms persist, you should see an allergist for medical help. You should also begin investigating how to locate and eliminate whatever mold growths you might have in your home that is causing your reactions.
- Your Baby Coughs At Night
Your baby should not be exposed to mold. Do all you can to remove and eradicate it from your house for your baby’s sake. Babies exposed to mold at home were three times more likely than others to become asthmatic by age seven. These aren’t good odds to stack up against your innocent child. If your baby finds it difficult breathing, coughs at night, frequently has chest colds, fast breathing, wheezes, or has a whistling sound when breathing, he/she might be reacting to mold. You should also ensure there are no molds in your baby’s clothes and toys, besides removing mold from your house.
- The Paint On Your Wall Is Bubbling
It is common to find paint bubbling in areas of your wall where there is moisture or dampness. Your bathroom walls or windows are prime examples. Mold often grows and spreads in moist areas like these. Instead of repainting or caulking to cover up the place, first find the source of moisture and eliminate it. Then the affected area needs mold removing chemicals, and to be allowed to dry properly before attempting to repaint and repair.
8. Your Attic Insulation Is Lumpy
According to the Co-founder of HomeZada, John Bodrozic, if your attic insulation is uneven-looking and lumpy, you might have a severe problem on your hands. If there has been roof leakage, the attic insulation might be in a terrible shape, which could potentially mean there is mold present. The attic might create the ideal environment for mold growth if it has improper ventilation or circulation. The result is that you and your family might be at risk for several health issues. Inspect your attic and ensure it is in good shape and there are no molds in it.
The presence of mold can pose mild to severe health risks. There have even been cases of memory and heart problems associated with mycotoxins and mold infestation. Besides the health risks they pose, they can also damage your furniture, walls, and appliances. For these reasons, mold, irrespective of whether you think it is toxic or not, should be removed from your home as soon as possible. If you live in or around Greensboro, North Carolina call the mold removal experts at Greensboro Mold Remediation Inc for help.