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Mold Exposure & Toxicity Symptoms
Water damage in your home can not only leave you with structural damage and lost personal items, but you may also begin to experience symptoms of mold sickness.
Mold can cause upper respiratory issues, sneezing, stuffy nose, irritated eyes, dry skin, and in more extreme cases, bleeding lungs. These issues can abate after a few days away from mold exposure for some, but others may suffer long-term health issues for weeks or months.
The CDC notes that mold can begin to grow in just 24-hours after a water breach, and it can thrive in moist, dark, and warm areas long after the breach is stopped, especially if a mitigation process is ineffective.
At HRS, we use technology like thermal cameras and moisture meters to identify hidden moisture. This is pivotal in limiting health risks associated with mold growth, as fully drying areas conducive to mold stops its spread.
What Is Mold Toxicity?
The first question many ask when they realize that they have been exposed to mold after a water breach is, “is there mold in my home and what can mold do to you.”
Exposure to mold can lead, in some people, to mold toxicity.
Mold toxicity is a result of exposure, and it is primarily caused by mycotoxins, which are basically poisons produced by mold.
Some research suggests that mycotoxins from some types of mold can cause serious health problems in people who live in contaminated properties.
How Dangerous Is Mold?
Mold is a fungus that grows in moist, damp, and warm areas. It occurs commonly after a water breach in homes and buildings.
The dangers from mold exposure can vary based on several factors, including the health of those exposed, their ability to metabolize the exposure, the size and duration of the exposure, and the type of mold.
Though black mold, or Stachybotrys chartarum, has gained notoriety in recent years as a dangerous mold, it is not the only type of mold that can cause health problems for those who are exposed.
The color or texture of mold is not an indication of its level of danger.
For people sensitive to mold, health dangers can include asthma, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, psychiatric illness, and long-term upper respiratory disease.
Mold Poisoning Symptoms
Mold can begin to grow quickly after a water breach. This can lead to exposure and, for sensitive people, an illness called mold poisoning.
Mold poisoning symptoms can appear in individuals who have been exposed to certain types of molds.
The symptoms that people feel vary depending on a range of factors, including the type of mold, the length of exposure, the individual’s sensitivity to mold and the extent of mold growth in the affected area.
There are some symptoms of mold poisoning that are more common for people who have suffered exposure. These include aches and pains, changes in mood, headaches, memory loss and nose bleeds.
Aches & Pains
Mold toxicity symptoms in humans include a list of symptoms, but among the most common are aches and pains.
These general pains can come after relatively short exposures to mold. For some people, these can last as long as the exposure continues or beyond.
The aches and pains are often described as affecting joints, and a general tiredness in some individuals.
Changes In Mood
According to the CDC, mold poisoning symptoms can include changes in mood for some individuals.
In fact, psychiatric problems are often found in those who have suffered from mold exposure.
Psychiatric problems sometimes included in mold exposure symptoms include not only changes in mood but also anxiety, depression, and brain fog.
Increased headaches, fatigue, and dizziness sometimes are symptoms of mold poisoning.
As with all other symptoms, these can occur in individuals who are sensitive to mold and who may have been exposed for even short periods of time.
Some research suggests that mold exposure and poisoning can lead to symptoms that are similar to those suffered when people contract viral or bacterial illnesses.
Memory loss is one of these instances and is a potential side effect of mold exposure.
Nosebleeds are common for people who suffer from allergies such as hayfever.
In the case of mold poisoning, nose bleeds can come to those who have been exposed for a longer period of time and may be the result of irritated nasal passages which have become inflamed as a result of mold spores being inhaled.
Allergic Reactions To Mold
A mold allergy is a body’s response to breathing in or touching mold and happens when your immune system overreacts to this contact.
Coming into contact with mold can lead to symptoms of mold illness that appear similar to hay fever.
If you suffer from an allergy, mold exposure can make you cough, make your eyes itch and cause other symptoms that make you miserable.
For some people, mold allergy is linked to asthma and exposure causes restricted breathing and other upper respiratory symptoms.
A runny nose is a common body response to a mold allergy.
Your nose may increase in the number of secretions it produces in response to irritation from mold spores.
Watery, Red Eyes
Much like the irritation that your nasal passages can suffer, your eyes can also become itchy and watery as a result of being in a mold-infected space.
Dry, itchy, or watery eyes are a result of your body increasing its immune response to protect against the spores.
In some cases, eyes can become painful as a result of this irritation.
Upper respiratory infections and cold-like symptoms are often reported by those suffering from mold allergies.
When you breathe in a mold-infected space, you inhale mold spores that are in the air.
This, in turn, leads to your lungs becoming inflamed and they produce a dry cough as a result.
This cough is your body’s effort to eject the offending spores from your lungs, though it can be painful for some individuals.
Irritation happens both internally and externally to those who suffer from mold allergies after being exposed to the fungus.
Skin rashes range from hives to blotches and even pin-sized acne-like sores.
The range of intensity of a skin reaction is wide as individuals have different levels of allergy, time of exposure, and underlying illness that can change the reaction.
Many who suffer from mold allergies report a sore throat after coming in contact with the spores that mold produces.
This happens when spores are inhaled through the mouth and cause the soft tissue in your throat to become inflamed.
People who suffer from mold-induced sinusitis can feel a range of symptoms including fever, facial pain or numbness, swelling, cough, nasal discharge, and headache.
The symptoms can look similar to a sinus infection for many who suffer from its range of potential symptoms.
Upper respiratory illnesses such as asthma are among the most common of the effects of exposure to mold and mold allergies.
These can lead to wheezing in some people. Wheezing is described by some as a feeling of tightening of the chest when you try to breathe.
This can be disconcerting and may be a sign of asthma for some individuals.
What To Do If You Find Mold In Your House
When there has been a water breach or leak, mold begins to grow in as little as 24-hours. That is why it is important to address a mold issue quickly.
The first step is to determine where the moisture that is allowing the mold to thrive is coming from. Then, stopping the moisture will help slow the growth of mold.
Drying out, cleaning, and disinfecting all areas affected by mold is essential to ensuring the health and safety of those living or working in the affected space.
Finding and remediating mold can be challenging as it can hide in any dark, warm and moist space.
Bringing in professional help is typically one of the best ways to effectively remove all evidence of mold from a property, especially one that has recently suffered water damage.
Why Choose HRS Disaster Restoration
HRS is a proven leader in water and mold mitigation and remediation. With decades of combined experience, our certified technicians are able to quickly assess a mold situation and offer solutions to ensure the health and safety of those who use the space.
At HRS, it is our mission to be there when you need us most, especially after trauma events like water damage, fire, or mold infestation.
Contact HRS Disaster Restoration Today!
When you discover mold growing in your home or property, it is essential that you contact the HRS and its certified mold remediation and restoration experts to protect the health and safety of those who live and work in the space.
We are here to help you in an emergency – whether it’s from a fire, mold, water, or trauma. When you need mitigation and restoration services to return your property to its pre-damaged state, trust HRS, the leader in Phoenix and Denver.
IICRC stands for the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification. Formed nearly 40 years ago, it is a non-profit organization that establishes globally recognized standards for the cleaning and restoration industry, as well as providing certifications, journeyman and master designation, and education.
By choosing a firm with IICRC certified team members, you are assured the cleaning professionals have undergone rigorous training and will handle your disaster restoration with the highest standard of care.
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Figuring out what steps to take when disaster strikes can be a daunting task. HRS is here 24/7 to walk you through the process and bring your home or business back to habitable condition(s).
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At HRS, we understand the panic that can set in when your basement floods or a fire breaks out at your business. We are here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to repair damage and give you peace of mind.