Mold refers to fungi that grows in thread-like filaments called hyphae with the capability of traveling through air. Some molds can cause spoilage of food while others play a role in biodegradation and production of enzymes, antibiotics and foods. Mold grows either indoors or outdoors but in humid, damp and warm environment despite the season.
The common types of molds found indoors include: Alternaria, Penicillium, Cladosporium, Aspergillus and Stachybotrys chartarum, also called black mold. Black mold is a less common greenish-black mold mainly found indoors in homes. Stachybotrys is known to grow on household items especially those with high cellulose content such as dust, paper, boards and wood. Some molds can even grow on food and carpet surfaces.
Molds can reproduce to form microscopic spores. They are hardy and can thrive or survive in harsh environments where mold cannot grow. mold spores are able to move through indoor and outdoor air. When the spores land in a moist surface, mold begin to grow.
Outdoors, mold assist in breaking down of organic matter such as leaves, compost and dead trees. Outdoor molds are majorly found in dark and moist areas with decomposing plant matter. Indoor molds are mainly found in shower stalls and basement areas. Molds found indoors can cause health complications and damage to surfaces they grow onto.
Mildew is fungi that appears in white. It’s unlike mold that comes in shades of green, blue, black and red. Mildew is thin and grows superficially with tiny hyphae produced on organic matter such as paper, leather or wood and living plants. Mildew produces offensive smell and also causes health problems to humans.
Mildew belongs to the species of fungi, order Erysiphales and to the family of Peronosporaceae. Sometimes mildew can be used to mean mold growth. It also means honeydew, a substance secreted by aphids on leaves. Previously it was thought to come from air-like dew but later came to mean fungus.
Breathing mold spores can cause your immune system to overreact causing allergies. Mold allergies can cause eye itchiness and coughing. Mold allergies can also be linked to asthma attacks in some individuals especially if exposure causes limited breathing. The best control measure for people with mold allergies is to always minimize exposure to any mold type that can trigger an allergic reaction. Medications can also be used to help control the allergic reactions
If you want to know if you have a mold allergy, look out for signs and symptoms such as: dry and scaly skin, coughing, sneezing, runny nose, watery and itchy eyes and itchy throat and nose. The symptoms vary depending on a person and the severity of the reaction. Some symptoms only show up in certain seasons of the year. Others when the weather is damp and warm and whenever you are in an environment with high mold concentration.
Mold allergy symptoms are triggered a sensitive immune system response. When you inhale the minute mold spores, your body will recognize them as foreign materials and develop defensive antibodies to fight them. Even after the exposure passes, your body will still produce antibodies that remembers the spores as an invader. This causes reaction of your immune response when your body comes in contact with the mold again.
Histamine is released as a result of the reaction which is responsible for the mold allergy symptoms. With the many types of indoor and outdoor molds, only a few types are able to cause mold allergies. You can be allergic to a specific mold type and fail to react to other types.
Most molds can affect your health. They produce toxins, irritants and allergens can cause reactions. The reaction depends on how much you are exposed to it, your sensitivities and your age. The same amount of mold if exposed to different people can cause adverse health effects in one person and fail to do so in another person.
Allergic individuals who have come into contact with molds either by touch or inhalation of the spores can have allergic reactions such as itchy eyes and nose, watery eyes, runny nose, sneezing and nose congestion. If you are allergic to molds then you are likely to experience asthma attacks. It causes shortness of breath, tightening of the chest and wheezing. Sometimes, though in rare cases, pneumonia can develop.
Infections can develop especially in people with immune systems that are weakened such as those immune-suppressed or immune-compromised maybe as a result of drug treatment. Such infections can cause effect on the eyes, skin and lungs. They are known as opportunistic infections because they don’t affect people who are healthy.
Mold can be hard to eliminate but with the help of an air purifier, its removal can be easy. Mold air purifiers can effectively capture and kill mold. The filter mold spores while eliminating them from the air. Molds growing on surfaces especially those blown indoors from outside can be difficult to control. This makes permanent mold elimination impossible. However, with the help of an air purifier, air remains clean and healthy.
Mold purifier with HEPA filtration system is the most effective type. Effectiveness of an air purifier depends on the capabilities of its filtration system. Efficiency of air purifiers are usually rated for efficiency depending on size of particle that can pass through the filters. Some air filters also has carbon filters to help remove bad odors from the molds. The smell becomes neutralized as it passes through the filter.
Running air purifiers continuously increases their effectiveness. The best thing about air filters is that they are energy efficient; they do not consume much electricity. For optimal results to be achieved, consider changing your filters. Air purifiers can also remove smoke, pet dander, dust and pollen and separate them from the air. The result of using air purifier is remaining with clean air having less irritants responsible for allergy and asthma attacks. Air filters are portable making them flexible hence easy to be operated on whenever needed.
Personally, I have always been fascinated with home items. I’ve learned long ago that when buying these products, there needs to be a balance between functionality and creativity. Otherwise, they get old and boring, and I don’t get to use them as much.