Mold in the House What Does It Mean?
Molds are organisms which are neither plant nor animal. They are part of the fungi kingdom. Mold is pretty much everywhere as dormant spores, both indoors and outdoors, just waiting for some moisture and the right material to activate and feed them. Mold’s purpose in life is to break down decaying organic matter. I’m sure many of you have done the early grade school experiment of leaving some damp bread on a plate overnight only to come back the next day to see the mold sprouting and then growing over the next few days.
What you witnessed were mold spores being activated by the moisture in the bread and sprouting into millions of tiny threadlike growths called hyphae. This mold is secreting enzymes that digest the bread and then the mold feeds on it, breaking it down into its basic components. This is nature’s way of recycling matter to be reused by the next growing organism. If this didn’t happen, there would be all kinds of organic matter piling up in its original state and not being reused in nature. Much of the leftover material is fertilizer for some other plant or organism to use. Obviously, mold is an important component of the cycle of life as we know it and is very important in nature.
Beneficial vs. Harmful Mold
The problem is that there are literally hundreds-of-thousands of different types of molds. Some are beneficial, such as in cheeses, helping to give specific tastes and textures. Some are used for antibiotics, such as penicillin. Some though, such as black mold, can cause disease and other allergic reactions. There are about two-thousand varieties that have been identified growing in homes, many of which can be harmful to humans. All molds are considered to be a potential hazard; it just depends on the conditions, the amount and the type of mold as to how much of a negative effect they will create.
When mold sprouts, the tiny threads will end in balls covered in spores, much like a dandelion grows hundreds of tiny florets. These numerous spores will be blown off by moving air and release millions of microscopic particles. You can literally place billions of spores on a pinhead. If indoors, these spores will be picked up by your air handling system and recirculated all through the premises.
Spores are very hardy and can sometimes last thousands of years. Once you’ve grown some mold in any part of your home or building, it’s pretty much a given that the spores have migrated throughout the entire property. These tiny spores are sitting on any available surface and are just waiting for some moisture and the correct type of organic material to allow them to sprout and start breaking down the material. These newly germinated molds will in turn grow more threads and release millions of more microscopic spores into the air. This is the “musty” smell that many people perceive when they walk into an older building.
These millions of spores, if one of the hazardous types of molds, will contain mycotoxins. According to Moldpedia.com, “Mycotoxins are toxins produced by some species of mold. Myco means fungal. These mycotoxins are some of the most toxic substances in existence.” These mycotoxins are what give people bad reactions and make them sick if they are exposed to them over an extended period of time.
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, “The symptoms of mold allergy are very similar to the symptoms of other allergies, such as sneezing, itching, runny nose, congestion and dry, scaling skin. Mold spores get into your nose and cause hay fever symptoms. They also can reach the lungs and trigger asthma.”
The awareness of mold being a threat to humans has been growing dramatically over the past years. Increasingly, it’s come up with doctors’ patients as well as being tied to autoimmune issues. Since mold is part of every person’s life, it’s important for all of us to have a basic understanding of mold and know its effects.
Fortunately, there is a way to get rid of mold in your home and that is mold remediation. You are dealing with a toxic organism, so when it comes to remediating mold, it’s always best to hire a professional mold removal and remediation service.
Mold Zero is a mold removal company that uses a highly effective and affordable mold elimination called Dry Fog Technology. It is patented, family-safe, non-toxic and EPA approved in all 50 states. Not only quicker and more effective than outdated remediation methods, it also saves you money. For more information, call 877-466-6530 or visit MoldZero.com. See ad page 5.
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