A Noxious Substance: Mold

Moldy Window Frames

Noxious substance

Potentially mold can cause health problems. Many of these health problems are due to the fact that mold can be an allergen as well as a toxin and carcinogen. Allergens are the core of allergic reactions. Toxins are actual poisons. Touching or inhaling mold can invoke either complication, depending on if the person is vulnerable and/or the mold is an allergin, or contains a toxicant. Once mold has gained a foothold in your house, the contamination can be difficult to control. Hidden in your basement, walls, attic, or crawlspace, corners of your moistest rooms like bathrooms or laundry rooms, or kitchens, mold can quickly develop to dangerous levels.

Vigilance is essential if your household contains someone sick, or chronically ill, elderly, or very young because these individuals are the most vulnerable. Cold or asthmatic symptoms can be caused by mold exposure, such as sneezing, runny nose, red eyes, skin rash, and dermatitis.

Mold test kits are available, but if mold could be the result of negligence on behalf of a landlord or contractor, it makes sense to have professionals check your air quality. Professional mold inspectors can not only provide reliable test results, they can also provide documents which can be used in court if a lawyer determines if a party might be liable based on carelessness or negligence, or some other factor.

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Mycotoxins are toxins produced by mold and fungi. Mycotoxicoses are actual diseases caused by mycotoxins, i.e. secondary metabolites of molds. Hundreds of mycotoxins have been identified, and many are pathogenic. But all illnesses from mold are not related to mold-poisons.

The most common reaction to mold is allergic in nature. It can be from exposure that is either dermal or by inhalation, and includes symptoms like wheezing, rash, watery eyes, runny nose,itchy eyes, coughing, and redness of the eyes.

Testing your home or work environment for mold is a healthy move. That cold you have that’s been going on for months may be a mold allergy coming from mold in your walls or crawlspace.

Black mold fungi Aspergillus which produce aflatoxins and cause pulmonary infection aspergillosis. 3D illustration

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Introducing Cladosporium

Cladosporium is a genus of mold that rarely produces lethal disease in humans except for causing skin and nail, sinus and lung infections. There are about forty individual species of Cladosporium, most of which are plant pathogens. When Cladosporium species spores are airborne, they can be allergens, and in large amounts might affect asthmatics, children, the elderly and individuals with respiratory disease or sensitivity. Cladosporium does not produce major mycotoxins, but the odor can be tied to volatile organic compounds, i.e. VOC. Species feed on dead herbaceous and woody plants, textiles, rubber, paper, food, floor, carpet and mattress dust, damp acrylic painted walls, wallpaper, drywall, HVAC insulation, filters and fans and wet insulation in mechanical cooling units. (Not a complete list.) This is a very common species of mold, found outdoors all year, with lesser concentrations in the winter. If the indoor concentration is not lower than the outdoor concentration, you probably need to do something about it.


Kingdom: Fungi
Division: Ascomycota
Class: Dothideomycetes
Order: Capnodiales
Family: Davidiellaceae
Genus: Cladosporium

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Toxic Mold in Seeds Are Possible Carcinogen

Sunflower seeds contain a toxin produced by mold that could increase health risk. Michigan State University researchers found that sunflower seeds, corn, peanuts, pistachios, and almonds contaminated with aflatoxin can contribute to liver cancer. Aflatoxin is considered as a potent liver carcinogen. The carcinogen makes its way into the food systems of low income countries after it is processed.

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Providence High School Closes 19 Classrooms due to Mold Infestation

Several classrooms at Central High School in Providence, Rhode Island, have been closed due to mold problem.

Authorities said 19 classrooms have been closed after mold was discovered in the East Wing of the school.

The school district said in a letter, “The city has also hired an environmental company to conduct certified cleanings of the classrooms that require any mold remediation… The repairs have been timed over vacation to minimize disruption to students and teachers. Please note that any water-damaged rooms will not house classes until necessary interior repairs have been completed and rooms are cleared by contracted experts.”

If you have a mold-related problem, please contact us.

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Mom Finds Large Clump of Mold in Fruit Pouch

A woman in Springfield, Missouri, reported mold in a fruit pouch purchased at the local ALDI store.

According to Ashley Lamb, she found a large clump of mold inside her 2-year-old son’s favorite Little Journey Apple Mango pouch. “He came running back in, ‘It’s yucky. It’s yucky!’ and spitting, and he normally doesn’t spit, and he was just spitting and drool running everywhere,” she said.

The grocery chain ALDI issued the following statement on March 30th, “ALDI takes the safety and integrity of the products we sell very seriously and our Little Journey baby line is no exception…. Our Little Journey Organic Food Puree pouches are USDA certified organic and contain no artificial preservatives. While extremely rare, if a pouch is punctured and exposed to air, mold can grow. It was brought to our attention that this occurred with pouches that were available for purchase at our Springfield store located at 421 E. Battlefield. Out of an abundance of caution, we have removed all Little Journey Organic Food Puree pouches from our store shelves in the Springfield area… We sincerely regret any inconvenience or concern this situation may have caused. If a customer has any concerns about this product, we encourage them to visit their local Springfield ALDI store and we’ll gladly refund the purchase price of the Little Journey Organic Food Puree pouches.”

If you have a mold-related problem, please contact us!

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Experts Warn About Possibility of Mold Growth in Hay Bales

As snow from winter has started to melt, the experts are warning about the possibility of mold growth in stored hay bales.

According to Montana State University forage specialist Emily Glunk, the excess moisture conditions produced due to melting, freezing, and re-melting of snow increases the risk of mold-infestation.

“It is always a good idea to test hay before feeding it to your livestock, especially if it has been stored outside,” she said.

Feeding Mold-infested bales to the cattle can cause several health issues, including respiratory problems.

If you suspect a mold problem, have your house/farm tested for mold.

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Do You Have Mold in Your Apartment?

Mold is a health hazard and living in a mold-infested apartment can cause serious health issues including lung diseases, asthma, and allergies.

Therefore, if you think your apartment is prone to mold-infestation, here a few tips that can help you address this situation:

  1. Take steps to reduce moisture in the susceptible areas, especially bathroom and kitchen. Using fans and opening the windows in these areas can go a long way in this regard.
  2. Make sure to open all the windows in your apartment for at least 5 – 10 minutes every day. Improving overall ventilation discourages mold growth.
  3. Dusty, moist surfaces provide an ideal condition for mold growth. Therefore, try to increase the frequency of dusting/cleaning the window frames and outside of your toilet tank.

Meanwhile, have your home tested for mold to ensure a healthy life for your family.

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Nugents Rock Waco with Killer Black Mold Story

Fifteen years ago, Ted Nugent and his wife Shemane moved from Michigan to Waco because their 5000 square foot Michigan home was contaminated with black mold. Shemane was the American Heart Association’s keynote speaker at the Go Red for Women luncheon in Waco. Ted and Shemane recovered from the effects of four different types of mold living in their bloodstreams.

Worried you’ve got mold? if you’re in California, call Byebyemold

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Mold Compensation

A woman got $32 million after mold decimated her Texas mansion, but the money won’t begin to fix the mental anguish she suffered. She sued Farmers Insurance Group. Mold can cause headaches, nosebleeds, respiratory issues and other symptoms, especially if an individual is a child, elderly, or infirm with a compromised immune system.

Worried you’ve got mold? if you’re in California, call Byebyemold

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