Molds are a big menace for a household. A mold is a kind of fungus that grows in your household. You must arrange for immediate removal of the black mole if you find its presence in your home. It’s a matter of the well being of you and your family, as we shall see. Mold can grow indoors as well as outdoors. There are different species of moles. While not all of them are harmful, a lot of them are. Black mold is one of the types of mold that can grow in your home. If you let it grow, it can pose serious health problems to you and your whole family. Even though there are many kinds of molds that have a black color, the one that is mentioned here is the Stachybotrys mycotoxins. They grow mainly in warm and moist areas like kitchens, bathrooms, etc. Moreover, they can even grow on dirt, paper, and wood.
Black molds are a serious problem not to be ignored at all. You must identify them and remove them as soon as possible. They get more and more difficult to get rid of as they grow. So you must try to get rid of them while they still are in the beginning stages of their growth. They grow mainly in areas where there is moisture. There are certain signs that might indicate the presence of mold. Also, there are certain areas that should be checked for the presence of mold.
Even though you can prevent the growth of mold in its beginning stages, you are advised to contact a professional mold remediation service. And if the mold has grown considerably, then you must definitely hire professionals from a mold remediation service. That is because in this case, only professionals have the kind of equipment to kill mold effectively and completely.
Symptoms of Exposure to Mold
Black mold can cause certain health problems. They contain mycotoxins, which is a toxic substance. For this reason, they are also called toxic molds. Though not necessary, they will cause some symptoms in the people who are exposed to them. If someone in your house shows one of these symptoms, it might be an indication of mold in your home. Black mold can cause health problems mainly in children, old people, people with weak immune systems, and people who have allergies or respiratory problems. People with healthy immune systems are generally unaffected by molds. Following are the symptoms that are shown by people who are exposed to black mold:-
The person who gets exposed to toxic black mold, or Stachybotrys chartarum, may show allergic symptoms. These symptoms include sneezing, runny or blocked nose, stuffy nose, wheezing, etc. Though these symptoms don’t necessarily indicate the presence of black mold. But they are still supposed to alert you about the presence of black mold in your home.
Black mold exposure may all cause irritations in a person. These include symptoms such as sore throat, skin rashes, red and itchy eyes, etc.
Although black mold doesn’t affect healthy people, it can considerably affect people who already have respiratory problems. It may cause asthma attacks on those suffering from asthma. It might also cause difficulty in breathing for a person who is suffering from a chronic respiratory disease. Molds in homes and mattresses are also a factor for children’s asthma.
Black mold cannot affect people with healthy immune systems. But they are capable of causing fungal infections in people who have a weak immunity system. In other words, a person with a weak immunity system would be more sensitive to mold.
Signs that might indicate the presence of black mold
When black mold is present in your home, you generally get some signs that indicate it. These signs would help you to detect their presence in your home so that you can get on with getting rid of them. Following are the signs that might mean the presence of black mold, or mold in general, in your home:-
When a surface is contaminated with mold, it gets discolored. In the case of black mold, it would develop black spots on the surface it occupies. If you are facing unexplained discoloration of a surface in your home, it might be the case it has been contaminated by mold. This sign is the easiest to spot since it is visual in nature.
When a surface is contaminated by mold, it generally gives off a musty odor. So if you are facing an unknown and unexplained musty odor, it might be the effect of the presence of mold in your home.
The presence of mold in your home may cause some symptoms of the health problems that have been mentioned earlier. Though these symptoms are not always caused by exposure to mold, they can be seen as a sign of the presence of mold in your home.
If your house has faced water intrusion due to a flood or a leaking pipe, chances are that it has developed mold. This is because black or any other type of mold spores thrive in water. So you might want to check for mold growth in the area that faced water intrusion.
Where to look for black mold in your home
Black mold, and molds in general, thrive in moist and warm conditions. But it is not that simple. In addition to warm and moist conditions, they may also grow on other surfaces that offer them food. So bathrooms and kitchens are not the only areas in which mold can grow. There are quite a lot of areas that you have to check for the growth of mold. Following are the areas of your home in which you must look for mold growth:-
1.Under the sink
The conditions under the sink are moist, warm, and dark. This is like an ideal condition for mold to grow. In fact, black mold spores thrive in a condition like this. So you must look under your sink for the growth of mold. In order to prevent the growth of black or any other type of mold under a kitchen sink, you must wipe the cabinet space under it with a hydrogen peroxide solution.
The growth of mold is not limited to only bathrooms and kitchens. They can also be present in our mattresses. If there is a part of the mattress which is humid and contains moisture for at least a part of the day, it is a potential ground for the development of mold. It must be noted here that mattress molds are a big factor in children’s asthma. So especially in case you have children at home, you must check your mattress for the growth of mold.
3.On or inside children’s toys
Yes, that’s true. Mold can also form on or inside children’s toys, especially bath toys of little children. This poses a big threat to the health of the children, especially the little ones as they like to put their toys in their mouths sometimes. And it must be noted here that little children have weaker immune systems. As a result, if their toys contain mold, it can easily cause them health problems. In order to prevent the growth of mold on a bath toy, you are advised to wash it in water mixed with 3/4 cup of bleach until you can’t see or smell any more mold inside it. You must also not forget to dry it thoroughly.
Mold can also grow on your dishes stored in the kitchen. This is a serious concern as it may lead to mold poisoning. To prevent the growth of black mold or any other types of mold on your dishes, you must wash them thoroughly and dry them properly before storing them.
5.Carpets and upholstery
The dirt that is gathered on carpets and upholstery is food for mold spores. So even though they don’t offer humidity, carpets and upholstery still provide a suitable ground for mold to thrive. So in order to make sure that they don’t develop mold, you must clean up your carpets and upholstery from time to time.
Even potted plants can develop black mold or any other type of mold. They provide the humidity and moisture that is needed by mold spores to grow. If there is mold developing on a potted plant, the reason could be that you have not been keeping them in the sunlight enough. The UV rays from sunlight kill mold spores. That’s why you’re advised to keep your potted plants under sunlight in order to prevent mold growth on them as well as kill off all the mold spores.
Other areas where you must check for mold growth include all the areas which have moisture and humidity. For example, in water damages on walls, between the pages of damp books, drywall, behind wallpapers, leaking pipes, etc.
Removing black mold
Once you have found mold in your home, the real task begins. Without any delay, you are advised to get on with removing the mold from your home completely. In case the growth of the mold spores is only in its early stages, you can remove it effectively on your own, but with a lot of precautions of course. And in case of extensive growth of mold, you must hand over the task to professionals from a mold remediation service. You can find many mold remediation companies offering their services. All you have to do is choose a reputed one that would give you a good and effective service. You wouldn’t want the mold to be requiring another mold removal service as a result of the mold regrowing.
In case you’re removing the mold yourself, you must take the following precautions:-
- The first thing you must do is cover up yourself completely from head to toe. You wouldn’t want the spores of the mold to escape in the air while you’re cleaning it and stick to your body. You would need masks, goggles, gloves, etc for this task. So make sure they are available with you.
- If there are any items in the room that have not developed mold, you must remove them first of all.
- You must arrange for proper ventilation while working in the room.
- In case you are removing a lot of molds, you are advised to use a disposable or a professional mold-resistant suit.
- You must make sure that the area is completely dry before renovating the room.