Mold-induced health effects are (at best) difficult to establish due to the fact that everyone reacts differently. Mold and micro-organisms are a natural part of our environment. What’s not so natural is when you can see them or when they grow (hidden) to a point that they degrade Indoor Air Quality (IAQ).
How Does Mold Make Us Sick?
Molds produce millions of spores that can be air, water, or insect-borne. They can also produce toxic agents known as “mycotoxins” that are toxic, immunosuppressive and potentially carcinogenic. And even the body of mold (or Hyphae) itself can make us sick. We can ingest, breathe or just touch mold spores, hyphae or mycotoxins and have a reaction. Household dust tends to concentrate mold stressors that can have a wide variety of health effects when inhaled.
As everyone reacts differently, having a few of the following symptoms could be an indication of a mold issue in your home worth investigating:
Common Health Effects of Mold Exposure
Mold exposure does not always present an immediate health problem. Occupants frequently experience symptoms often associated with an “allergic-type reaction”:
- Type I & II Hay Fever
- Runny-Stuffy Nose / Nose Bleeding
- Nasal Congestion / Sneezing Fits
- Sore Throat / Cough / Ear Infection
- Itchy / Watery Eyes / Eye Redness
- Flu-Like Symptoms / Fever
- Wheezing / Asthma
- Skin Rash / Itching / Blotchiness
- Headaches / Body Malaise
- Rashes / Skin Infections
- Shortness of Breath
- Get Sick / Better / Sick Again
Advanced Health Effects of Mold Exposure
Health symptoms associated with mold-related illness as reported by the Experts and what GWE has experienced include the following health effects:
- Abdominal Pain / Vomiting / Reflux
- Chronic Fatigue / Weakness
- Chronic Cough / Congestion
- Dementia / Brain Fog / Insomnia
- Hair Loss / Blurry Vision / Tinnitus
- Arthritic-Like Joint Pain / Stiffness
- Overactive Sinus/Shortness of Breath
- Memory Loss/Mood Instability Anger
- Skin sensitivity/Tingling/Numbness
- Light Sensitivity / Headaches
- Pin-Prick Type Red Rashes
- Sudden Chemical-Food Sensitivity
- Extremity Swelling / Lymph Nodes
- Metallic Taste / Burning Sensation
- Rapid Weight Gain / Loss
- Difficulty Concentrating
People at Greatest Risk from Mold Exposure
Individuals w/allergies, asthma, sinusitis or other respiratory issues; weakened immune system; elderly; pregnant women & young kids are at increased risk. And yes, pets are also susceptible to the effects of mold exposure. The EPA and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) are excellent resources to learn more.
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