What Are The Common Types Of Household Mold?

What are the common types of household mold? There are over 100,000 species, but only a few you're likely to see. Mold is very common in most households and is a natural part of the plant world around us....

Mold is very common in most households and is a natural part of the plant world around us. "There are over 100,000 different species of mold" states Kevin Bristol President of Advance Mold Remediation and member of the Environmental Protection Agency. When mold grows outdoors it helps to break down dead trees, dead animals and other organic matter. Indoors mold can also break down the environment and structure of your home and therefore should not be allowed to grow. Mold can be a beneficial process in making food such as cheese and wine. Mold was also a key discovery in producing medicine such as penicillin. However mold has been shown to make people very sick and should be cleaned up and removed immediately if found in your home.

On the Environmental Protection Agency website there is this explanation of mold; "Molds produce tiny spores to reproduce. Mold spores waft through the indoor and outdoor air continually. When mold spores land on a damp spot indoors, they may begin growing and digesting whatever they are growing on in order to survive." The Occupational Safety and Health Act further explains: "All molds share the characteristic of being able to grow without sunlight; mold needs only a viable seed (spore), a nutrient source, moisture, and the right temperature to proliferate. This explains why mold infestation is often found in damp, dark, hidden spaces; light and air circulation dry areas out, making them less hospitable for mold."

According to the Toxic Black Mold Information center there has been a 300 percent increase in asthma in the past 20 years due to mold exposure in the home. Another study done by the Mayo clinic indicates that most sinus infections can be attributed to mold exposure. Different people react to mold in different ways. Some people are not bothered by it while others can have a severe reaction. Mostly infants, the elderly and people with a compromised immune system will have problems when exposed to mold.

As far as mold inside the home, "There are probably 10 different species you see on a regular bases," explains Bristol. "The most common types of mold found in homes are Aspergillus penicillium and Cladosporium."

Aspergillus penicillium is an allergenic mold which has 160 different species and is now known to cause the most disease in humans. This type of mold thrives in the dust in your air conditioning unit. When you turn on your air conditioner the mold spores are spread throughout your home causing illness. It is important to get your air conditioner serviced and cleaned regularly to avoid this problem. Aspergillosis is a fungal infection caused by this mold and requires the most hospitalizations in the United States.

Cladosporium is darkish green or black and has powdery substance that you can brush off of it. Cladosporium grows on dead plants, food, dirt, paint, wall board, and the surface of fiberglass ducts. Exposure to this mold spore can cause skin rashes, nail fungus, sinusitis, asthma, and pulmonary conditions.

Stachybotrys is more commonly known as toxic black mold and is blackish and slimy. Stachybotrys can produce mycotoxins which are tiny spores that are extremely hazardous to humans. Toxic black mold exposure has been found to cause cancer, asthma, fatigue, headaches and suppress the immune system.

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