Mold growth is a homeowner’s worst fear. Not only is it aesthetically displeasing, but it can also cause structural damage that requires costly repairs. Even more concerning; exposure to mold has the potential to cause a variety of health problems.
While certain types of cleaning agents may be effective at removing mold, homeowners who would like to eradicate any existing mold in their properties and prevent future growth can benefit from learning about mold and why it can grow inside their homes.
Mold is a general term used to describe a collection of fungi that grows both indoors and outdoors. There are numerous species of mold; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that more than 300,000 strains of mold may exist. Some of the most common types of mold that grow indoors include penicillium, cladosporium, alternaria, and aspergillus.
How does Indoor Mold Growth Occur?
Mold thrives in damp, warm conditions. When airborne mold spores enter a home, if the conditions are right, they can colonize and begin growing on any surface. Mold spores can travel into a home through open windows, open doors, cracks in the foundation, siding, and roofing, and any other opening. It can also travel indoors on clothing and shoes.
When mold spores travel indoors, they can begin growing in areas that are damp and warm. Some of the most common locations where mold can be found indoors include poorly ventilated bathrooms, damp basements, and around appliances that use water or create moisture. Mold spores are very small and cannot be seen with the naked eye. However, when they collide with wet surfaces, they attach and begin to grow; that’s when homeowners begin to notice that they have a problem.
What are the effects of mold?
Molds are a natural and important part of the environment. When they grow outdoors, they rarely cause any issues; in fact, they are beneficial, as they aid in process of decomposition.
The Institute of Medicine pinpointed sufficient evidence that supported the link between exposure to mold growth in indoor locations and respiratory tract issues, which can include coughing and wheezing. Other symptoms can include itchy, watery eyes, skin irritation, mood changes, fatigue, headaches, and fevers.
The same report issued by the Institute of Medicine revealed that mold can trigger asthma attacks in people who have been diagnosed with the condition, as well as hypersensitivity pneumonitis, a disease that causes inflammation in the lungs.
While the majority of people who are affected by mold are those who have pre-existing health conditions, individuals who are otherwise health can also be sensitive to mold exposure.
How to Decrease Mold Growth at Home
To decrease mold growth, make sure that your home is properly ventilated. Clean up any water that may develop on surfaces and repair leaks. Controlling humidity levels can also prevent mold growth.
Mold Inspection & Testing Las Vegas has vast experience performing mold assessments in residential properties throughout the city. We strongly urge Las Vegas residents to arrange for regular mold testing to ensure their safety and the safety of their families. To speak with an MI&T representative, call 702.800.0155.