A picture showing the true color of black mold (rhizopus sp) spores, which is green using Light Microscope, Normal image without any coloring or processing By researcher El sayed Al gayar, Faculty of Agriculture Damietta University

Toxic Mold, Is Black Mold Dangerous?

In recent years you have likely seen a lot of information out there about dangerous mold. You probably have heard a lot about toxic mold, and I belt it was all about toxic black mold. Now every time you see mold your wondering if that cough you have is in fact from black mold symptoms. Maybe it is, if you have mold in your house you need to remedy the problems as soon as possible so those black mold exposure symptoms your worrying about don’t become something more serious. Many mold exposure symptoms will clear up once the problem is fixed, unfortunately some mold long term health effects can develop and become more serious.

If you have mold in your home, it is important to recognize that a lot of mold species are not dangerous to most people. In fact, mold itself is not inherently dangerous to humans. It is what mold makes that can be a problem. If you have mold allergies you will actually react to molds that other people would not. So if you have mold allergies it is even more important to fix the problem quickly.

Some mold species, stachybotrys chartarum (black mold) being the most famous, create what are called mycotoxins. These chemical compounds are released into the air and can cause cumulative negative health effects on humans.

While any black mold usually gets the worst reputation for creating mycotoxins, the reality is that molds of any color, size, and texture can be dangerous. Some of the most dangerous molds common in United States households are stachybotrys chartarum, aspergillus flavus, aspergillus fumigatus, aspergillus niger, aspergillus versicolor, and pencillium chrysogenum—yes, pencillium. While it has medicinal uses, you don’t want it in your house.

There are thousands of species of mold, and only a few can produce mycotoxins harmful enough to significantly threaten your life. Your environment also needs to have a huge build-up of the dangerous mold to affect a person’s health. So, it is important to remove any mold as you spot it and regularly check for growth in hard-to-see areas of your home like basements, attics, and behind walls.

JUST NEED TO KNOW HOW TO CLEAN UP MOLD: HOW TO CLEAN UP MOLD IN YOUR HOUSE

Can black mold kill you?

In the right conditions, black mold and any other mycotoxin releasing mold can kill. This conclusion is rare, since dangerous mold’s effects are not instantaneous. Thus, the longer you are exposed to dangerous molds, the more likely that your health and life is in jeopardy.If you begin to feel any of the symptoms of mold-related illness, you should have your home checked right away. This is especially important if you or your loved ones have severe allergies or chronic respiratory conditions like asthma.

Is black mold toxic?

Technically, black mold and all mycotoxin releasing mold are not toxic, they are toxigenic. This means that they can produce a toxin or toxic effect. The toxin in harmful mold’s case being the mycotoxin.Mycotoxins are potentially dangerous to humans. So, you should always call in professional mold remediation specialists when you see large areas of mold in your home. But, the severity of mycotoxin’s effects on an individual person will depend on a lot of factors. The presence of a harmful mold in your home does not guarantee a life-threatening situation.

How Dangerous is Black Mold?

Is black mold dangerous: When people mention toxic black mold, they are usually referring to stachybotrys chartarum, commonly referred to as black mold. This species of mold is known for releasing potentially deadly mycotoxins into the air. While this type of mold has been known to be harmful, it is not the only dangerous mold species. See this link to  Read More about stachybotrys chartarum

As mentioned above, there are thousands of different types of mold. Most are not harmful to humans, but some like black mold, release mycotoxins which can have a negative effect on your health. But, not all of these dangerous molds are black.

If you are concerned about whether the mold you see in your home is toxic, you call a professional mold specialist immediately. Most dangerous mold’s effects are cumulative, which means that they will get worse over time.

How does mold affect your health, Mold Poisoning?

The severity of mold’s effects on a person’s health will vary from individual to individual. Some people are more naturally sensitive to molds. Plus, people with moderate to severe allergies can be more effected by mold’s presence than others. Mold poisoning or mold exposure will vary depending on the person and may or may not show symptoms. To really be considered poisoning you would have had to have harmful effects. The exposure time, amount, and type of mold will all effect your symptom’s.

Black Mold Symptoms (the truth about black mold)

Black mold symptoms in humans can be matched to many different types of mold poisoning symptoms in humans. Instead of just being concerned just with black mold symptom’s instead all molds should be treated as a problem. All molds need to be properly cleaned up and prevented. Not all molds are toxic, but without testing it is nearly impossible to tell if the mold in your house is going to cause health problems or not. Toxic mold can come in all different sizes, shapes, and colors, this is why we should focus on all mold and not just be concerned with black mold. Below is a list of areas mold can affect, as you can see just about everything system in your body can be affected by toxic molds. Each person will react differently to Molds depending on Exposure, a person’s overall health, age, and genetics. Just because symptoms are not obvious does not mean you are not being affected.

Toxic Mold Can affect/cause

Respiratory symptoms

Mental and neurological issues

Circulatory symptoms

Skin problems

Immune system problems

Vision and eye problems

Reproductive system problems

Tiredness and discomfort

Other illnesses and health effects

 Mold Exposure Symptoms (signs of mold illness and allergy)

Not matter the severity level, mold tends to affect a person’s upper respiratory and sinus systems.

Symptoms of mold sickness

If you have a reaction to mold, you can experience a variety of symptoms of varying severity levels.

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Mild Symptoms

Cough and congestion

Itchy eyes

Runny nose

Watery eyes

Moderate

Dry skin

Wheezing

Chest tightness

Aches and pains

Severe

Asthma attacks

Shortness of breath

Central nervous system issues

Lung, liver, and kidney infections

Typically, people will experience these symptoms progressively from mild to severe as if mold exposure continues unchecked. However, people with severe allergies or asthma may begin having moderate or severe reactions to mold right away.

Can you get sick from mold in your house?

Most of the problems related to mold exposure occurs in a person’s own home. The sicknesses will progress more quickly if you spend a lot of time in your home and/or there is a lot of mold growth.

You can experience any of the above symptoms from mold in your home. Depending on the type of mold growth, you may only experience the mild symptoms, or they may progress to the moderate or severe varieties. Just because you don’t typically have allergies does not mean that you are protected against the effects of mold in your home. Mold can cause reactions in people who do not have other allergies.

Symptoms and effects of breathing mold?

In general, breathing mold spores directly causes similar health problems as any other type of mold exposure. Symptoms of breathing mold range from dry or watery eyes, a mold causing cough, or runny nose. In locations with extremely high quantities of mold spores, some people may experience the poisoning effects of mycotoxins—depending on the types of mold present—or a fungal infection. If you have Asthma, COPD, or a compromised immune system than the side effects of breathing mold can be more dangerous and put you are at a higher risk of breathing difficulties and illness.

How much mold exposure is harmful

The amount of harmful mold exposure it takes to create health effects varies from person to person. But, in general, for the most sever and life-threatening effects to occur, a person needs to be exposed to an extremely large amount of mold.

To experience the mildest mold-related effects, you only need slight exposure to mold. So, if you are suffering from cold or allergy symptoms without a likely cause, they may be related to mold allergy symptoms This should cue you to begin looking for a mold outbreak in your home, and thus prevent any of the more moderate or severe symptoms of mold-related sickness. Be aware that mycotoxic mold exposure is harmful at any level and should be cleaned up immediately.

How much mold exposure is harmful

The amount of harmful mold exposure it takes to create health effects varies from person to person. But, in general, for the most sever and life-threatening effects to occur, a person needs to be exposed to an extremely large amount of mold.

To experience the mildest mold-related effects, you only need slight exposure to mold. So, if you are suffering from cold or allergy symptoms without a likely cause, they may be related to mold allergy symptoms This should cue you to begin looking for a mold outbreak in your home, and thus prevent any of the more moderate or severe symptoms of mold-related sickness. Be aware that mycotoxic mold exposure is harmful at any level and should be cleaned up immediately.

Related Mold Infections

Some people will have more that just mold allergy symptoms from exposure to mold. Breathing in Mold can cause infections from mold in sinuses which may produce allergy like symptoms, congestion, sore throat, and respiratory issues and infection. Mold allergy symptoms are a common response in many people to being exposed to mold.

In addition to the more common upper respiratory infections and symptoms associated with mold exposure, some (few) people can get related mold skin infections. These can manifest like in skin rashes and fungal infections. Yes, black mold rash is a real thing. Find more information on different kinds of mold that causes symptoms here.

Most often these infections occur in places where the mold came in direct and repeated contact with your skin. This condition is called systemic mycosis, and usually only occurs in immunocompromised people—such as those people undergoing chemotherapy. Immunocompromised people can also get more serious infections of the sinuses, digestive tract, and lung because of mold exposure.

If you do not have a condition that makes you immunocompromised, then you have a much less likelihood of getting one of these infections. It is much more common for healthy individuals to exhibit less serious symptoms like a runny nose or dry throat.

Asthma (Lungs)

Respiratory Conditions: Mold and Asthma

Because mold exposure tends to target the upper respiratory tract, people with a preexisting condition in this area should be especially careful around mold. Asthmatics, most of all, are at risk for complications because of mold. Additionally, immunocompromised may be at the most risk for serious or life-threatening illnesses in their respiratory system because of mold. Mold causes asthma in children: There is also some evidence to suggest that mold exposure in the early years of childhood can cause asthma. So, if your household has children in it, you should make certain that it is free of mold. Side effects of Mold Can be More serious than you think

We’ve mentioned multiple times already that people with chronic and immunocompromising conditions are at a greater risk from mold. But, it is worth making this extremely clear. The more exposure you get, the more you put off cleaning it up the worse your health will get.

 Mold-Asthma & illness don’t mix

Be even more concerned if you fall into this category. Preexisting chronic conditions like asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, and lupus can react badly to mold exposure. Also, people or children who have a weak immune system are likely to experience more severe effects from dangerous mold. If you or anyone in your family suffers from one or more of these conditions, you should be especially careful to remove all mold from your home.

How to get mold out of your body

Now that you know the symptoms of mold exposure, you may be wondering what to do once you know mold has been causing a health problem. The most important thing to do first is to stop the exposure. Fix the problem. If you are experiencing health problems because of exposure to mold, the first thing you should do is to remove all mold from your environment. This most likely will involve talking to a mold remediation specialist.

Next, you should talk with your doctor about managing and curing your symptoms. For mild cases of mold exposure, the symptoms will subside once you have had mold remediation. But, with more severe symptoms or in homes with immunocompromised people or those with chronic conditions, the help of a doctor and antibiotics may be warranted. If you are concerned about the effects of mold exposure, your family doctor is the best person to talk to about treatment options.

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