Archive for the ‘mold’ Tag

Is It A Cold?… Or Mold?: How To Tell And What To Do Next (Part 2 of 2)

At the root of all of these physical reactions is an elevated level of toxic spores. Luckily, there are steps that you can take to protect your home and family from these dangers.

A simple visual inspection of you home can give you a good idea of whether mold is present. Keep in mind, though, that it prefers dark, damp growing conditions so you’ll need to check basements, under carpets and pads, and in other somewhat hidden locations in addition to what is readily visible. If any water damage or leaks have occurred, the chance of mold increases. Mold growth will usually show up 24 to 48 hours after water saturation occurs.

Mold may also hide inside cabinets, behind drywall, under baseboards, or behind wallpaper. Check behind bubbled or peeling paint, particularly on windowsills, in basements, crawl spaces, and attics. Any substance that looks slimy, dark, furry, or otherwise suspicious may be mold. It will typically be accompanied by a musty odor.

If you do locate mold inside your home, the next step is to identify what type of mold you’re dealing with. Specially trained mold inspectors should be brought in to determine the type, source, and extent of your infestation. They will identify the mold by collection samples and sending them to a lab for further analysis.

Another more cost effective option is to purchase a home mold testing kit. These do-it yourself kits are able to detect the presence of mold and provide you with the data you will need in order to have the mold identified. These kits can be purchased online and even at some home improvement and “super” stores.

Inside the kit, you will find instructions explaining how to collect a usable mold sample. You will then be asked to send the specimen to a laboratory for testing. The laboratory will then determine whether the mold is benign, allergenic, pathogenic, or toxigenic.

Once the type of mold has been analyzed, you will then need to decide on their next course of action. If the mold appearing in your home is found to be toxic, a mold specialist may be your safest bet. A mold specialist will be able to safely and professionally remove the mold infestation. Some homeowners insurance will cover the costs of professional mold removal.

In most instances, mold removal is a simple process involving the removal of a small section of wall or floorboards at the source of the infestation. In more severe cases the process could require some substantial deconstruction and reconstruction. In this sort of situation, other contractors including plumbers, roofers, foundation specialists, etc. could be required in addition the specialists doing the actual mold removal.

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Because of the growing number of infestation reported each year, some states have passed laws and started programs designed to help to protect consumers from the damaging physical and financial effects of toxic mold damage in the home.

Is It A Cold?… Or Mold?: How To Tell And What To Do Next (Part 1 of 2)

With warmer weather moving in, many fun and healthy outdoor activities will soon be able to be enjoyed by individuals and families all across the country. However, spring also brings with it an elevated risk of certain health hazards such as indoor mold infestation. Some types of mold commonly found in and around households can be considered little more than a nuisance and can be removed with a spray bottle of diluted bleach and a sponge. However, other types can cause very serious health problems, especially in individuals with preexisting conditions such as allergies, asthma, emphysema, and other respiratory problems.

Stachybotrys chartarum is the most dangerous type of mold to have in your home. Still, no type of mold is good to have around and all infestations should be dealt with correctly and promptly. It is important to know how to spot mold growth around the home and to be able to identify signs and symptoms of mold exposure in family members.

There are many different ways that mold allergy can manifest itself physically in humans. They range from mild allergy symptoms (scratchy eyes, stuffy nose, etc.) to severe and chronic upper respiratory infections and life threatening seizures. The more toxic the strain of mold you are exposed to and the higher the concentration and duration of exposure, the more severe the symptoms will be.

After exposure to mold, individuals may experience brittle nails, frequent nosebleeds, and even hair loss. Prolonged mold contact can even lead to cancer, anaphylaxis, reproductive organ complications, and major weight loss.

Scientists have been able to identify over one hundred different species of molds that exists within everyday living environments. Although not all molds are toxic, there are around fifteen species that have been proven to cause health problems in humans.

Doctors from all across the US have been reporting an increase in the number of patients with toxic mold related conditions. No one is sure as to what is causing this increase, but it is an undeniable fact that more people than ever are being affected by mold related health problems.

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