HOW MUCH OF A HEALTH PROBLEM IS MOLD?
Mold is a fungus type that occurs as tiny organisms found everywhere. When mold grows, it manifests in green, black, white, purple, or brown stains. Outdoors, mold spores play a crucial role in nature by breaking down dead plants, trees, and leaves to decompose. As you already know, molds thrive in moist or damp conditions and flourish in the form of lightweight spores that travel in the air all the time.
In tiny amounts, mold spores are harmless, but when they land in damp environments around your house, they multiply. You will likely find molds in bathrooms below leaking sinks, crawl spaces, basements, laundry rooms, and other environments constantly exposed to moisture. Your walls, floor, carpet, furniture, and other surfaces in your house provide a place for mold t grow as long as they are moist.
Mold health risk
Whether you experience mold allergy or not, extensive mold exposure can be harmful to your health. It can make you sick if you have respiratory allergies, asthma, and other lung problems. Mold exposure also irritates the nose, throat, eyes, skin, and lungs.
For individuals sensitive to mold, touching or coming into contact with molds can cause allergic reactions such as wheezing, coughing, sneezing, runny nose, red eyes, and skin rash. Individuals with severe mold allergies can experience breathing problems, and people with asthma can experience asthma attacks following mold exposure.
Individuals most likely to be sensitive to the effects of mold exposure include infants, toddlers, the elderly, and people with chronic lung disease. Also, individuals whose immune system is compromised by preexisting medical conditions such as HIV/AIDS, cancer, chemotherapy, etc. are at risk.
How to control mold growth
Since moisture is the thriving factor for mold growth, controlling moisture in your home is the best way to prevent mold growth. If mold is already occurring in your home extensively, it is best to seek professionals for mold removal and remediation in West Palm Beach to eliminate and mitigate it. This is important because if you do not identify the root problem of the dampness causing mold, it will reoccur even after cleaning.
You can reduce the build-up of moisture and humidity by:
- Use a dehumidifier or air conditioner if you live in a highly humid area and hot climates to reduce water in the air.
- Maintain indoor humidity at 60%. You can buy a hygrometer to measure your indoor humidity levels regularly.
- Keep your house warm during cold months. Note that as temperatures decrease, the air cannot hold moisture that can condense on surfaces and lead to mold growth.
- Install insulation in cold surfaces, including walls, floors, and windows, to reduce condensation.
- Keep all surfaces around the house dry.
- Fix seepage and leakages immediately as they occur. Mold starts to grow 24-48hours after water damage.
- Schedule repair and maintenance regularly in your heating and cooling system to ensure it correctly eliminates humidity. Also, ensure your technician checks the air duct for air leaks and contaminants such as molds.
- Always open doors between rooms to encourage air circulation.
- Dry fabrics thoroughly before storing them.
- Regularly clean your house and dry it well to prevent the risks of mold growth.
- Avoid installing carpets in bathrooms and basements.
- Use mold-killing products when cleaning your bathroom.