Molds are tiny microscopic organisms that are present in both indoor and outdoor environments. In nature they help breakdown leaves, plants or other debris. Mold becomes a challenge when it makes its way into your home or business. Mold enters your home as tiny spores. For these spores to grow and multiply they need moisture. Moisture can be in the form of a roof leak, a damp basement, improper installed gutters, poor drainage, cracks in your foundation or leaky faucet. You can have mold growth from water damage that is not completely dried within 48 hours.
Mold can grow on almost anything from wood, ceiling tiles, wallpaper, sheet rock, insulation, carpet, books and the list goes on. When mold is disturbed they release spores into the air. You can have health related symptoms like runny nose, persistent cough, trouble breathing, skin irritation or headaches. Children, the elderly, and individuals with comprised immune system are at higher risk for mold related health issues. When the mold is not removed it can lead to asthma, or other serious medical conditions. Mold spores are light, microscopic and can land anywhere and not be detected by the human eye. You can be exposed by touching mold, eating moldy food, or accidental hand to mouth contact.
If you notice any colored spots on your wallpaper, ceiling, basement, bathrooms, or have a musty odor you should have your property evaluated for mold. Mold testing will provide useful information regarding your indoor air quality. Testing should be done by a professional industrial hygienist or mold tester. Testing will determine the best approach for improving your indoor air quality and determining if you have toxic mold commonly called Black Mold. It is important to follow through with a mold testing because if mold is present it will not go away until you address the moisture and humidity issues. As mold grows and spread it produces toxins called myotoxins. When individuals are exposed to high levels they can develop a mold allergy. Testing by your physician will determine if you have a mold allergy. Toxic Mold can make you sick and the symptoms will only get worse until the mold is removed.
Some common ways to avoid mold growth are repairing any leaky faucet, roof, ceiling or plumbing leak. Open windows and doors to improve air circulation when appropriate. Vacuuming with Heppa filters on a regular schedule will help to remove mold spores. Clean up any water damage quickly and completely paying attention to carpet pads, underneath vinyl flooring and any sheetrock that came in contact with water. Check for adequate ventilation in your crawl space or attic. Install exhaust fans in bathrooms, kitchen and utility room. Check your foundation to ensure that water is moving away from the slab or concrete wall.
Removing mold from your home should be left to the professional who have the certifications, equipment, and products necessary to return your property to a safe place to live or work.