Mold, It’s Everywhere!
Mold and their numerous floating spores are all around us. It’s inside our houses. It’s outside. And everywhere in between. We can’t avoid it, nor should we. Mold spores are not inherently a problem, but it’s how our body reacts that is the issue.
Some people can distinctly smell that musty odor, which gives them a clue there may be a mold issue. Others feel a scratchy throat, headache or sinus issues. The negative affects of mold display a variety of symptoms.
Is Mold Dangerous
When someone finds suspect mold in their home, the most common questions I get asked are, “Is mold dangerous?”, “Is this black mold toxic?” or “Is my home safe?”
My common answer is…maybe, but maybe not.
I wish I could draw a line in the sand and say, on this side of the line is harmful. Or, on this side of the line it’s safe. But it’s not that easy. There are several variables as to why mold may affect one person but not another.
Allergies Don’t Affect Everyone
Allergies are a simple segue to expound on this issue. One person may have a reaction to mountain cedar pollen. Another person may feel the effects of increased ragweed in the air. Simply put, what affects one person doesn’t necessarily affect another. Just as different people have different allergic reactions, we are unique and our reaction to mold spores are just as individualistic. It is the same concept with mold allergies. What may affect one person, may not be harmful to another.
As a side-note, people prone to allergies are more susceptible to fungal infections.
All that being said, there are some types of fungal spores that are particularly harmful to humans. Stachybotrys is one main offender. Penicillium/Aspergillus is another problematic fungus. Finding out if these types of spores (and a myriad of others) are floating around in ones home is a helpful first step.
Having indoor air quality checked is a great place to start. Once an individual has good solid data about air quality of the living spaces, better decisions can be made about how to handle potentially problematic mold.