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Mold Health Effects

Mold can have allergenic, pathogenic, and toxigenic health affects on people. Senior citizens, children, and immune compromised people are most susceptible. People who live with mold for a long time are also susceptible.

Mold effects on health are many. Mold symptoms include headaches, wheezing, asthma attacks, allergies, hypersensitivity, irritants such as itching, and glucans (flu-like symptoms). The cause is mycotoxins on mold spores.

From the Center of Disease Control (CDC) Website:

What are the potential health effects of mold in buildings and homes?

Mold exposure does not always present a health problem indoors. However some people are sensitive to molds. These people may experience symptoms such as nasal stuffiness, eye irritation, wheezing, or skin irritation when exposed to molds. Some people may have more severe reactions to molds. Severe reactions may occur among workers exposed to large amounts of molds in occupational settings, such as farmers working around moldy hay. Severe reactions may include fever and shortness of breath. Immunocompromised persons and persons with chronic lung diseases like COPD are at increased risk for opportunistic infections and may develop fungal infections in their lungs.

In 2004 the Institute of Medicine (IOM) found there was sufficient evidence to link indoor exposure to mold with upper respiratory tract symptoms, cough, and wheeze in otherwise healthy people; with asthma symptoms in people with asthma; and with hypersensitivity pneumonitis in individuals susceptible to that immune-mediated condition. The IOM also found limited or suggestive evidence linking indoor mold exposure and respiratory illness in otherwise healthy children.

Most Common Types of Hazardous Mold

The common types of hazardous mold found in houses include alternaria, chaetomium, cladosporium, penicillium/aspergillus, and stachybotrys.  Of these, cladosporium and penicillium/aspergillus is the most common.

Penicillium/aspergillus is what is found in higher quantities, but both cladosporium and penicillium/aspergillus are usually found together.  Mildew is a type of penicillium/aspergillus.

The Black Mold

When people think about mold, they tend to worry about the black mold, stachybotrys.  It's a green-black mold that causes folks to worry.  Replace fear with facts by reading our article on The Black Mold.

Bottom Line

The mold assessment and mold remediation practices don't differ as far as mold remediation is concerned.  All the molds are treated the same.  In general, the worst mold is assumed everything is cleaned up accordingly.

Health treatment does differ, under the care of allergists and pulmonologists.

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