The greatest enemy of the housekeeper: mold. All forms are the bane of tidy house’s existence. This pest usually turns up in areas of the home where moisture is prevalent, like kitchens, bathrooms, and basements. Most of the time it’s harmless, if unpleasant. But some forms of mold can cause serious health issues. Don’t let this household menace stick around if you find it.
Allergies is the most common health concern. Allergy symptoms include wheezing, rash, runny nose, and coughing. It can also cause itchy, watery, and reddened eyes. If you believe you are having any sort of serious allergic reaction, you should see a doctor.
What is mold? In short, it’s a type of fungus. It grows in filaments and reproduces using spores. Mold can also be referred to as Mildew. This is usually a white or grayish color. The most common types of indoor mold are Cladosporium, Penicillium, Alternaria, and Aspergillus. Stachybotrys chartarum, or “black mold”, is a greenish-black mold that is less common, but can still be found indoors. So black mold can usually be found on materials with a high cellulose content, like fiberboard or dust.
Although bathrooms are the most common area to find mold inside the home. It can appear in other areas. Drywall, carpets, furniture, and areas around plumbing fixtures are all susceptible to mold. It can be many different colors and may appear as spots. It is commonly accompanied by musty odor. So you should always be wary of warning signs as mold can hide in tricky places like under carpets or behind drywall.
The effect of mold on your health may vary. Allergy symptoms are the most common reaction to mold. However, people with other health conditions may have more serious reactions. Mold may cause someone with asthma to go into an attack. In people with compromised immune systems there may arise a lung infection. Prolonged exposure can result in symptoms not unlike pneumonia.
The best way to prevent mold is to be proactive. Fix any plumbing leaks promptly. So avoid using carpets in rooms that tend to harbor moisture, like basements and bathrooms. If your home tends to be a bit humid or you live in a humid climate, consider buying a dehumidifier. Insulate well to avoid condensation and resulting mold.
If you do find you have mold. There are procedures for removal. If it’s a large area, you may need to call in a professional. For small, hard, non-porous areas, detergent and water should do the trick with a good scrub. Materials that are moldy, such as carpet and clothing, must be thrown away. If you have any health concerns after encountering mold in your home. Discuss this as soon as possible with your doctor.
You and your family’s health is the main concern. So if you suspect you have mold. Take steps to get it out of your home right away!