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Toxic Mold

All You Ever Wanted to Know About Toxic Mold:
What is Toxic Mold?

There are often mold spores scattered throughout homes…on surfaces, in the air, in ventilation systems. It is important to understand that not all mold is “toxic mold.” The molds themselves, in fact, are not toxic at all. Molds only become “toxic” when they produce secondary metabolites that then produce toxins.

How Can I Prevent It?

  • Mold thrives in moist conditions. Keeping a clean, dry home will go a long way toward preventing mold growth.
  • Fix leaky or broken pipes right away.
  • Make sure windows and doors are tightly sealed.
  • Make sure that roofs are secure and do not leak.
  • Any time a leak or flooding occurs, clean up the water right away so that mold spores do not have time to grow.
  • Use of a dehumidifier can reduce humidity in the air and , thus, reduce mold growth.
  • Make sure there is adequate ventilation in the home.
  • Carpeting in the home can promote mold growth. If possible, do not carpet the home. At the very least, however, it is important that carpet not be used in bathrooms or basements.


How Do I Know if I Have It?

  • Large mold problems can often be seen. Keep a lookout for black or green spots and patches around the home.
  • A musty odor is a sign of a potential mold problem.
  • Areas of high humidity are the perfect breeding grounds for mold spores, and, therefore, can indicate mold growth.
  • Leaking pipes or roofs, excess water, or flooding in or around the house allow mold to thrive. Signs such as warped wood or peeling paint can be indications of excess moisture.
  • Chronic health/allergy or respiratory trouble can be a result of mold (see below).
  • Although they can sometimes be expensive, mold tests can also show that mold is present.


What Health Symptoms Should I Be Looking For?

  • Allergic reactions such as itchy and watery eyes, runny nose, coughing, sneezing, and, in severe cases, chronic sinus infections
  • Throat irritation
  • Headaches
  • Decreased attention span
  • Dizziness
  • Asthmatic problems such as coughing, wheezing, or difficulty breathing
  • Often, in mold-related cases, these symptoms will be present in the offending environment and then clear up in other environments.