Outdoors, mold plays an important part in nature by breaking down dead organic matter such as fallen leaves and dead trees. Molds are actually fungi those reproduce by releasing tiny, microscopic spores. With good air circulation and sunlight, mold growth stays in check. Harmless mold spores are always in the air. They drift into the home through tiny cracks around windows, enter every time that you open the door, travel when the dog shakes his wet coat. However, certain moisture and temperature conditions allow a dangerous opportunity for it to flourish. Mold will grow in places with a lot of moisture, such as around leaks in roofs, windows, or pipes, or where there has been flooding. Consider damp paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, and wood products as fertile ground for mold. It can also grow in dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery.
What dangers to humans and pets could mold cause?
While molds pose little to no threat outside, inside your home and business mold growth should be avoided and removed. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), exposure to damp and moldy environments may cause a variety of health effects. Some individuals are more even sensitive. For these people, molds can cause nasal stuffiness, throat irritation, coughing or wheezing, or eye irritation. People with mold allergies may have even more severe reactions. Immune-compromised people and people with chronic lung illnesses, such as obstructive lung disease, may get serious infections in their lungs when they are exposed to mold. In 2004 the Institute of Medicine (IOM) also suggestive evidence linking indoor mold exposure and respiratory illness in otherwise healthy children.
According to Petmd.com, mold poisoning in a pet basically falls into three categories: inhalation, allergic reactions, and ingestion. If you suspect your pet may have inhaled mold, keep an eye out for the following respiratory symptoms: respiratory distress (breathing that takes more effort or occurs more rapidly than normal), nasal discharge, coughing, wheezing, sneezing, lethargy, and in the severest of cases bleeding from the mouth and/or nose. Physical symptoms of an allergic reaction to mold exposure might include excessive scratching, chewing, or licking, which sometimes progresses to the point of fur loss and the development of sores.
How can I clean up mold in my home?
Household bleach can kill the spores and prevent mold growth. However, are you trained to remove mold? Mixing bleach with other chemicals will produce dangerous, toxic fumes. You must open windows, provide fresh air, and wear non-porous gloves and protective eyewear. Plus, bleach will only eliminate surface mold and in most cases, surface mold is just a small fraction of a mold problem. Most mold contamination lays under the surface where bleach can’t reach. Consult the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guide titled Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings. You can get it by going to the EPA website http://www.epa.gov/mold/mold_remediation.html.
When should I call in a professional?
If the area to be cleaned is more than 10 square feet, working with bleach could cause you more harm than benefit. The longer water damaged items remain wet, the greater the damage becomes. Your water damage problems will most likely compound and repair expenses could increase by failing to act quickly. Your home and business are your two most important assets. Don’t give tiny spores of mold a chance to harm either. Instead of exposing yourself to even more toxins by cleaning it on your own, call Challis Restoration Services. We have safely removed mold from hundreds of homes and businesses and ensured our customers had safe places to work and live.