Black Mold - The causes of indoor air pollution
are numerous. They include the obvious, such as the presence of black mold.
Even if there is black mold present, further study is needed, as there are
several molds, which produce black spores including the common fungi cladosporium, alternaria and rhizopus.
We understand that
there are often several steps involved in determining the health risk due to
any black mold present. For example, the collection of air or wipe samples
may be needed to determine the particular type of fungi that is the cause of
visible black mold present in a home or business. A.Alan's Reliable personnel have the
necessary skill and expertise in removing and preventing the re-growth of
Can you battle Black Mold?
Stachybotrys (Black Mold) is
a greenish-black mold that grows on materials with a high cellulose and low
nitrogen content, such as fiberboard, gypsum board, paper, dust, and lint.
Growth happens when there is moisture from water damage, excessive humidity,
water leaks, condensation, water infiltration, or flooding. Constant
moisture is required for its growth.
Is the mold in my building Black
Stachybotrys occurs widely in North America, it is very common to find it in
homes. Black Mold requires water soaked cellulose (wood, paper, and cotton
products) to grow. While wet it looks black and slimy perhaps with the edges
white, and when dry it looks less shiny. But it is not the only common black
mold to be found in these conditions.
The Stachybotrys fungi cannot be identified by a routine visual inspection.
Remember all black mold is not necessarily Stachybotrys. It could be
non-toxic black mold. The only method to determine the type of mold present
is by sample analysis by an accredited laboratory. Also, it is important to
keep in mind that the mold is only a toxic risk or hazard if a person
breathes or comes into contact with the spores. Wet mold is not an indoor
air quality health risk, but there is a significant potential for the mold
to dry and released into the air.
What are the
health effects? (see Health Concerns
and Health Benefits)
Mold exposure does not always
present a health problem indoors. However some people are sensitive to
molds. Stachybotrys is toxic. And if the spores are inhaled they can lead to
a variety of ailments and even death. Experts say that it sometimes takes
years before the effects of black mold exposure are detected. This type of
mold is thought to be a possible cause of the sick building syndrome.
Centers for Disease Control (CDC) list the following as symptoms from
exposure to Stachybotrys mold:
- Respiratory problems, such as
wheezing, and difficulty in breathing
- Nasal and sinus congestion
- Eyes-burning, watery, reddened,
blurry vision, light sensitivity
- Dry, hacking cough
- Sore throat
- Nose and throat irritation
- Shortness of breath
- Chronic fatigue
- Skin irritation
- Central nervous system problems
(constant headaches, memory problems, and mood changes)
- Aches and pains
- Possible fever
- Possible hemosiderosis
- Immune suppression
Keep humidity level in your house below 50 percent. Use air conditioner or a
dehumidifier during humid months. Make sure your home has adequate
ventilation, including exhaust fans in kitchen and bathrooms. Use mold
inhibitors, which can be added to paints. Clean bathroom with mold killing
products. Do not carpet bathrooms. Remove and replace flooded carpets
Remediation of Black Mold
The removal and/or disinfection of these items can be performed by A.Alan's
fact, ARS employees are highly trained and experienced in containment
procedures. Containment procedures are needed when removing mold
contaminated building materials so as to prevent the dispersal of mold
spores into non-contaminated areas of a building or dwelling. Improperly
removed mold contaminated building materials can result in widespread
illness among the building occupants. The illness is a result of mold spores
being spread into a building or home as the contractor failed to use proper
containment procedures. Mold spores become airborne easily, and if a
containment fails, the airborne spores will readily spread into adjoining
areas and possibly the ventilation system.