Black Mold is a thin, black fungal growth, more properly known as Stacybotrys Chartarum that can usually be found in places with a high humidity or too much dampness or poor ventilation. Black mold can be found in any part of your home or office, as building materials such as sheetrock, wood, cardboard, paper or jute-backed carpeting etc. are very conducive to the growth of black mold. It’s a huge concern to home buyers, because it affects air quality and destroys surfaces it grows on if left unchecked.
Black Mold spores occur naturally in the atmosphere and cannot be avoided. They settle and grow wherever conditions are suitable for them. They float in through your open windows and doors, or come inside being transferred on your clothing or your pets. In order for black mold to develop in homes or buildings, certain conditions must be present. First and foremost, there must be sufficient moisture present. Real problems in homes and buildings rarely occur unless there has been intense flooding, usually in basements, sometimes from leaky roofs, or where there has been an extensive plumbing problem.
If spores land on a moist or damp surface, usually in a poorly lit area, they can grow. So the key to mold control is moisture control. Water-damaged areas must be dried within twenty-four to forty-eight hours to prevent mold and mildew growth.
Most people have a natural immunity to the effects of mold, but some are more sensitive than others. Still a moldy home is not a healthy home. Individuals that are mostly at-risk are infants, the aged and asthmatics being treated with steroids. The people with the highest concern are those with pre-existing respiratory problems such as tuberculosis or cystic fibrosis. Others that are at risk are those undergoing chemotherapy or other treatments that adversely affect the immune system.
The most common health issues include symptoms similar to hay fever. Others may experience eye or skin irritations or respiratory difficulties. There are other extreme reactions reported but they have yet been proven. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, determining the level of health risk is mostly determined by looking at the individual and assessing whether they fall into one of the risk groups.
Black mold or “toxic black mold” usually is a kind of greenish-black in color. While there are only a few molds that are truly black, many can appear black. Not all molds that appear to be black are Stachybotrys or Toxic black mold. It does not grow on bathroom tile as these organisms depend on the breakdown of organic material in order to thrive.
Exposure to mold is not a healthy living condition for anyone and if found in your home it should be removed as quickly as possible. This removal should be handled by professionals trained to deal with mold removal. Often insurance restoration companies are trained at mold removal.
Black Mold produces harmful toxins that can be very dangerous for humans. People affected by long term exposure to Black Mold can develop respiratory problems, sinus problems, headaches, asthma, skin problems, and mental deterioration and instability. It has been known to prove fatal in cases of pregnant women and very young children. For these reasons, Black Mold removal, mold remediation, and mold abatement is very important.
Black Mold is not something you want to be growing inside your home and the moment you see the fungi anywhere on your clothes or household items or room walls or ceiling, you should take steps to have it removed immediately.