What is mold?
Molds are microscopic organisms found virtually everywhere, indoors, and outdoors. Mold spores are tiny, lightweight and easily detached by airflow, vacuuming, or walking on carpet. Indoors, they grow in air-conditioning ducts, carpets, pots of household plants, etc. They produce and release millions of sporessmall enough to stay airborne and threatening to invade the human respiratory system. In large quantities, molds can cause allergic symptoms similar to those caused by plant pollen.
Where does mold come from?
Remember, mold is everywhere in small doses, indoors and outdoors. But before fungi / mold can colonize and become a potential hazard, four requirements must be met: air, livable temperature, moisture, and food. Humidity and water leaks are the cause of most mold infestations.
Is all mold the same?
No. Allergenic molds are normally not dangerous in low amounts, but they can cause allergenic or asthmatic symptoms such as wheezing or runny nose. These molds can be abated safely with the assistance of gloves and a disposable particulate-removing respirator. Mycotoxic molds can cause serious health effects in humans and animals. Health effects range from short-term irritation to immunosuppression to cancer and even death. If any toxic molds are identified, it is suggested that you seek advice from an Industrial Hygienist or other indoor air quality professional. Coastal Restoration will assist you in referring a professional in this field. Pathogenic molds can cause serious health effects in persons with suppressed immune systems, those taking chemotherapy, those with HIV or autoimmunity disorders. Seek professional help when these molds are present (or if you think they are).
What should I do if I think I have mold?
Determining the amount of mold you have in your home or office requires the services of an indoor environmentalist or air quality expert. They can come to your building, test for mold, and report their findings. If clean up is required most will develop a protocol and recommend a company such as Coastal Restoration to do the cleanup. Note: Because of the misinformation in this industry, we strongly recommend that you retain an environmental expert independent of the remediation company.