There are many species of mold, and they have been on earth since the beginning of life. Some molds are beneficial, such as the mold species from which the drug penicillin is derived. Other mold is an integral part of cheese making, but there are some species of mold which can cause serious ailments, including a variety of respiratory diseases, when the mold is growing inside a building.
Mold in Buildings Linked to Respiratory Disease
Molds found inside buildings develop where there is moisture. This means bathrooms, laundry areas, areas under the kitchen sink, hot tubs, and spa areas are the most likely places for developing a mold problem. Basements, crawl spaces, and garages are also common places for finding mold growth. Molds can also develop inside air conditioning systems and vents.
Not everyone is affected in the same way when a mold is present in a home or other building, and the presence of mold is not always obvious or detectable by odor. Molds growing inside walls or under floors can still spread spores, even though the mold itself is not visible.
Some people do not experience any reaction to mold, but for other people, exposure to certain species of mold can cause wheezing, coughing, allergic reactions, fatigue, watery eyes, skin disorders, and bring on asthma attacks.
The best ways for preventing mold is by:
- Having adequate ventilation in bathrooms, kitchens, laundry, and spa areas.
- Quickly repairing leaks in water inlet pipes, drains, roofs, and around windows.
- Making sure downspouts funnel rainwater away from the building and not allowing it to enter crawl spaces or basements.
- Keeping indoor humidity at the correct level.
If you suspect mold inside a building is having an effect on your health, contact Tri Span Environmental for a consultation, and find out how you can eliminate mold and its health risks from your environment.
Mold and mildew are not exactly the same, and understanding the difference is important when remediation is needed.
Is It Mildew or Mold?
Mildews and molds are different kinds of fungus, and both come in a variety of species. Both of these fungi grow quickly when conditions are humid or moist, which means they are often found in bathrooms, kitchens, and crawl spaces where moisture is present.
In most cases, mildew grows only on the surface of a wall, floor, or ceiling, while molds are capable of extending deeper into the material, making them harder to treat and potentially more harmful.
Because it is restricted to the surface, mildew is easier to get rid of than a mold problem. If the mildew is not extensive, it can often be remediated simply by applying a disinfecting agent to the area.
While there are countless species of mold, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports there are five species commonly found causing problems in buildings. These are:
- Aspergillus, usually found on walls and insulation materials and appearing in many colors,
- Penicillium which often appears in areas with significant moisture,
- Alternaria, the most common mold type found in showers, under basins and sinks, and on window frames,
- Cladosporium, a mold which prefers colder environments,
- Stachybotrys chartarum, also known as the toxic black mold because it releases a poisonous dust which can cause asthma, allergies, sinus infections, and other serious health problems.
Whatever type of mold or mildew problem you may have, effective solutions are available from Tri Span Environmental.
Tri Span Environmental is a leader among Southern California building remediation businesses. As experts in the field, Tri Span Environmental specialists know removal of hazardous materials from a building starts with complete containment of the toxic materials within the worksite area.
The Dangers of Contaminants
Containment of dust and debris is the first step in the complex process of removing asbestos, lead paint, mold, and fire-damaged components from a building. Protecting people from air-borne hazards and dust contamination during a remediation project is the highest priority for Tri Span Environmental on every job. In many situations, containment of dust and debris from the remediation area can be done while normal use goes on in other parts of the building.
Remediation & Cleanup Services
Inside the containment area on a remediation project, air filters and pumps keep fresh air moving in and hazardous dusts fibers from moving out. Once the remediation site is contained within a protective barrier, specialized vacuum cleaners designed for use with hazardous fibers and dust are used by Tri Span Environmental as part of the decontamination step.
Containment of hazardous materials is the foundation step in removal of asbestos, lead paint, and mold from any building. If not done correctly, dust and particles from the contaminated building materials can cause continuing problems and toxic exposure in the reconstructed building. Installing the proper hazardous material containment system is the first step on every Tri Span Environmental remediation project.
Black mold, also known as Stachybotrys Chartarum to scientists, can become toxic when releasing its spores. The release of spores occurs when it feeds on organic materials including carpet, drywall, insulation, and subflooring that has received exposure to moisture. If these spores are inhaled or ingested, a myriad of unpleasant or dangerous symptoms could be the result. Continue reading “Health Effects of Black Mold” »