4 Major Health Issues Caused by Mold
High Levels of Austin Mold Growth & What It Means for Your Health
Mold can be a major headache, literally. In addition to creating problems with your Austin home or structure, mold can also wreak major havoc on your health.
You may have heard that lately there's been a higher than average mold growth throughout Austin. The truth is mold is everywhere - that's why complete mold removal is not a reality; however mold remediation is an absolute priority, when you've experienced mold growth. If you're wondering what the difference is, check out this article, where you'll find information explaining the differences between mold removal and mold remediation. If you have seen mold growing in your Austin home or business, it's a necessity that you have it treated immediately, so the mold does not continue to grow, and cause additional issues with your health.
The good news is that mold remediation companies, like our SERVPRO team can help. From the initial stages of an Austin mold inspection to the remediation process to the restoration of your home or business - we're available 24/7 to help with your mold issues.
How does mold develop?
One of the major causes of mold is actually water damage Austin. But there are also many other ways in which mold can develop. These can range from poorly ventilated spaces, excessive moisture in the air and very high levels of humidity.
Mold: Moisture and Humidity
Being microscopic, mold is able to grow on practically any surface, including wood, paper, gypsum (drywall), and on fabrics. The key to stopping the spread of mold is to reduce moisture by using proper ventilation. Appliances such as a dehumidifier or an air conditioner can help to greatly improve ventilation and alleviate the presence of mold in your Austin home.
While mold can be stopped, you can still find traces of it, as its spores are microscopic. By controlling the amount of indoor moisture in your home or business, you can greatly reduce the spread of hazardous mold spores, which can affect your health and also damage your home or business; mold growth can actually compromise the structural integrity of a home or building.
4 Health Issues Associated with Mold in Austin
As mold spreads and goes ignored, your ability to experience a variety of serious health issues from mold increases. Nasal and sinus congestion, sneezing, eye and throat irritations, coughing, respiratory issues, and other health issues can be caused by different strains of mold.
Some of the more harmful mold strains are known as mycotoxins, which are toxic compounds that are released in certain environmental conditions, and can be extremely dangerous. While outdoor molds can be tricky to remediate, the biggest issue is actually indoor molds, because if these continue to go unchecked, they can also make you highly ill.
Not surprisingly, many mold allergies tend to escalate during the summer months. With asthma, for example, people can be affected year round, with symptoms, such as itching, runny nose, sneezing, scaly skin and congestion. Many are affected by molds that grow on trees, grass and leaves. The general misconception is that these spores die off in colder weather, when in fact they instead become dormant and reappear once it becomes warm again.
Humid areas in your Austin home or office, such as bathrooms, showers, kitchens, and areas with very little ventilation and basements, can be high-risk breeding grounds for mold and can greatly escalate the spread of mycotoxins.
Here are some of the major health issues that can be caused by different kinds of mold.
1) Asthma: Asthma is a chronic respiratory disease, which has no cure. Mold can definitely trigger it if spores find their way into the inner lining of your nose, causing symptoms that can make you feel feverish. Gradually, the mold spores will travel into your lungs, which can cause asthma symptoms, depending on how sensitive your lungs are. In many cases it tends to be seasonal, but if you’re allergic to indoor mold spores, then it can be a year–long issue. Indoor humidity can also cause upper respiratory issues for people with asthma.
The most notable asthma symptoms include coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing and tightness in the chest. In some cases, an asthma attack can be so extreme that it may require medical attention.
2) Allergies: Alternaria and cladosporium are the two most common allergy causing molds, which, if inhaled can cause serious reactions. Allergic Rhinitis is also known as hay fever, and is one of the more common afflictions caused by mold. Its many symptoms include sneezing, red and itchy eyes, a runny or stuffy nose, all of which can affect your ability to sleep and concentrate. Hay fever is often brought on by pollen, pet dander, dust, and, of course, mold. However, it should be noted that the mold involved here is usually outdoor mold, with pollen serving as the major culprit.
3) Pulmonary Hemorrhage is a disease that causes bleeding in the lungs. Mold spores can get into the lungs, leading to a wide variety of respiratory problems. Pulmonary Hemorrhage tends to have a profound effect on infants, seniors and individuals with pre-existing pulmonary disorders.
3) Bronchitis: While alternaria and cladosporium are known to cause allergies, these two pesky molds can also cause bronchitis. Bronchitis is caused when the air passages that lead to the lungs become inflamed. Black mold can be a leading cause of this, especially if you have leaky or damp walls and ceilings. In addition to black mold, another type of mold, stachybotrys chartarum, can cause chronic bronchitis if not treated, and it can also lead to death.
4) Depression and Toxic Mold Syndrome: Excessive exposure to toxic mold can also lead to insomnia, anxiety, memory loss, confusion, shortness of breath and depression. There have been cases where individuals developed bipolar like symptoms, only to discover that Toxic Mold Syndrome was actually the cause. If not remediated properly, Toxic Mold or Black Mold can cause cognitive and emotional issues, as well as brain toxicity. The exposure to black mold can be so severe that there have been reported cases of brain swelling. However, if caught early, many of these effects can be reversed, but it’s important to always get a second opinion if you suspect a misdiagnosis.
While you may think that mold may not have that much impact on your health, there are numerous symptoms that can be caused by exposure to different kinds of mold. These symptoms can include include: Fatigue, Headache, Morning stiffness, Red eyes, blurred vision, sweats, mood swings, sharp pains, joint pain, diarrhea Static shocks, blurry vision, tingling skin, and many others.
How to Solve the Mold Problem
The first step is to stop mold in its tracks. If you should experience any type of water damage, extreme humidity, or even start to see the slightest traces of mold, you should make every attempt to find the source and clean and dry the affected areas as soon as possible.
Mold can often be removed from hard surfaces by cleaning with soap and water. Should your carpets and walls show any signs of mold, they could be very difficult to clean; if this is the case, you may have to throw out your carpets and replace your walls. Mold and other bacteria can also appear if you have pools of standing water around your property, so be sure to remove those if they exist.
If your mold situation becomes way too problematic and overwhelming, then you may have to reach out to an Austin mold removal specialist, to help remove and remediate the mold in your home or business.
How SERVPRO Can Help:
Granted, mold removal can be extremely difficult, and if it spreads and is beyond your ability to conquer, then you should contact a mold remediation specialist, like SERVPRO of East Central Austin, who can help stop the spread mold, so that you’re no longer at risk.
Our SERVPRO team is centrally located in Austin and consists of highly trained mold damage specialists, with specific training and required certifications to handle your mold remediation needs. We use only top of the line, state of the art equipment to treat your home.
The more that mold spreads, the more complex it becomes to remove. SERVPRO of East Central Austin will examine and detect any possibility of mold at your home or business. We can provide an immediate mold inspection and if one should exist, we’ll get right on it to start remediation and stop if from spreading.