Mold can be a major problem in homes and buildings not just in terms of unsightly and unpleasant stains but also; and much more importantly, because of the health implications of breathing in spores.
Mold can grow on a variety of building materials including: drywall, carpet, insulation or sub-flooring and in order to grow, mold needs certain conditions:
- Nutrients – mold needs food. Wood, paper, cotton all contain enough nutrients to allow mold to grow, and are all to be found in most buildings.
- Darkness – Mold cannot survive in conditions where it is exposed to ultra-violet light, so you’ll find it in the darker corners such as basements or cupboards without windows.
- Warmth – Mold is inhibited and cannot grow when conditions are too cold.
- Moisture – Mold needs water, so it will thrive where there are leaks, condensation or high levels of humidity
- Oxygen – Mold and mildew need oxygen to survive
The really important thing to notice is that mold needs moisture
Everything else on the list above can be found in pretty much every building, but when you add high levels of condensation – say a shower room without an extractor fan or adequate ventilation, or a cupboard where there is a tiny leak from a pipe perhaps. That’s where you are most likely to find patches of mildew and mold forming.
This is why there tends to be higher incidences of mold in warmer, more humid climates. The humidity in the air is perfect for mold.
There are many reasons why you should guard against mold, or take immediate action if you should find any mold in the home or workplace, but the most important of these is the fact that inhalation of mold spores can be highly dangerous. Toxic Black mold (Stachybotrys chartarum) has been shown to lead to many health problems.
Health Effects of Toxic Black Mold
- Irritation to the eyes
- Irritation of mucus membranes
- Irritation of the nose and throat
- Chronic fatigue
- Persistent Headaches
Those with prior respiratory problems or who fall into vulnerable groups such as; babies and young children; the elderly; anyone with a weakened immune system; anyone prone to skins problems such as eczema or psoriasis and people who suffer from asthma and similar conditions.
If you find mildew or mold, or if you think you may have a problem you should get professional help to get rid of it, and of course take care not to brush against it if possible, as it is this that will release the allergens in the spores into the air.
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Permanent Prevention Of Mold
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