Fungi is pretty much indigenous to where ever it turns up. As an opportunistic life form, it can turn up anywhere there is moisture and cellulose, indoors or outdoors. There are hundreds of molds just outside your door, though in relatively small concentrations, depending on the weather and the time of year. The quantities found outside are the set point. Indoors, the rule of thumb is that there should be up to the quantities of mold as there are outside. If it is less, you’re doing well. If there is more, you have problems.
Here are some things to think about when dealing with mold inside your home.
- If you disturb dry mold when you are cleaning, it will naturally go into the air. To prevent this from happening, remediators tend to spray dry mold before they sweep it up. It might be sprayed with a bleach-water solution first. The idea is not just that spraying kills it, but dampening it will help prevent it from becoming airborne; and it would be foolish to dampen it with water, which makes it grow. That would be like putting out a fire with gasoline.
- Mold can be dead and still bother you. Even if it is dead, if allergy is your problem, you’re allergic to what the mold is made of, whether or not it is dead or alive. If mycotoxin is your problem and your mold is dead, at least it is not producing any more mycotoxin.
- Make note of your symptoms and if they worsen. Allergies can develop with exposure…just as immunity can. See Allergic response and Immune system.Sensitive people may experience skin rash, running nose, eye irritation, cough, nasal congestion, aggravation of asthma or difficulty breathing. People with an immune suppression or underlying lung disease, may be at increased risk for infections from molds.
- If you are exposed to mold and develop an autoimmune reaction, all is not lost. The condition can be treated by IVIg and antifungal treatment.
- If you are hunting for mold in your environment, look where water has damaged building materials and furniture from flooding or plumbing leaks, along walls where warm moist air condenses on cooler wall surfaces, such as inside cold exterior walls, behind dressers, headboards, and in closets where articles are stored against walls.
- Stop water leaks, repair leaky roofs and plumbing. Keep water away from concrete slabs and basement walls.
- Open windows and doors to increase air flow in your home, especially along the inside of exterior walls. Use a fan if there are no windows available.
- Make sure that warm air flows into all areas of the home. Move large objects a few inches away from the inside of exterior walls to increase air circulation.
- Install and use exhaust fans in bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms.
- Ventilate and insulate attic and crawl spaces. Use heavy plastic to cover earth floors in crawl spaces.
- Clean and dry water damaged carpets, clothing, bedding, and upholstered furniture within 24 to 48 hours, or consider removing and replacing damaged furnishings.
- Vacuum and clean your home regularly to remove mold spores.
- Check around your windows for signs of condensation and water droplets. Wipe them up right away so mold can’t start to grow.
- If you have more then ten square feet of mold to deal with, call a professional.
If you’re in California, you might want to give us a call and see about getting an assessment from Byebyemold.