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About Mold

What is Mold?

“Mold” is a non-scientific term that generally refers to members of the fungi kingdom. Mold is the fungi that grows on the surfaces of objects, within pores, and in deteriorated materials. Mold growth on building materials can influence air quality because spores are dispersed into the air and can be inhaled.

Mold is a cause of increasing concerns, with many case studies linking mold to a wide range of adverse effects on respiratory health. Molds cause three major diseases in humans-

  • Allergies
  • Infections
  • Toxic Reactions

Molds can produce adverse health effects in humans through exposure by inhalation, ingestion, or skin contact. Certain molds can produce Aflatoxins (carcinogens) that lead to very serious health problems. The four most toxic molds are-

  • Fusarium
  • Aspergillus
  • Penicillium
  • Stachybotrys

Mold is a living organism that reproduces itself and grows. Mold needs only oxygen, a food source (such as wood or drywall) and water to survive. Molds produce microscopic cells called spores that easily spread through the air. These live spores form new growths and the process repeats itself. Mold can begin to grow in 24 to 48 hours in the right conditions. Moisture control is the key to controlling mold.

Why the increased concern about Mold?

  • Warming of the climate
  • Increased rainfall
  • Tighter home construction
  • More cellulose bearing materials used in modern homes
  • Lumber not dried prior to shipment
  • People spending more time indoors (90%)

Indoor Air Quality is more important and more challenged than ever. The more we learn about Mold and its’ impact on humans, the more important it is to determine the presence of Mold and takes steps to remove and prevent Mold from recurring.

Links

  • www.aiha.org
  • www.epa.gov
  • www.moldpro.org