It’s not uncommon to encounter mold in your home one way or another. You might notice it one day when you never have before, or you might find the presence of mold while renovating your house.
Regardless of how you discover it, mold can lead to significant health issues over time. This is especially true for black mold.
If you’re wondering “what is black mold,” we’ve got all the info that you need to know. Let’s take a look.
So, What Is Black Mold?
Also known as Stachybotrys chartarum, black mold is a certain type of mold that often grows within homes. As the name suggests, it often appears black in color but could also be dark green.
In general, you can find it growing at a source of moisture. Leaks, water damage, and flooding can easily lead to the growth of black mold.
If you live somewhere that has a particularly wet climate, you might even find it growing within the general areas of your home as opposed to isolated locations.
What Are the Dangers?
Unfortunately, there are numerous dangers associated with black mold. These could also range from mild symptoms to severe health effects that need immediate treatment.
In general, infants are most at risk of the harmful effects of black mold. Similarly, those who have been diagnosed with asthma are likely to experience complications from prolonged exposure.
The most common symptoms include:
- Itchy/red eyes
- General congestion
If you happen to have an allergy to mold, however, your reactions may be much more intense. Some individuals experience shortness of breath while others have their symptoms go unnoticed.
In extreme cases, you may also suffer from memory loss or lethargy.
As you can tell, it’s in your best interest to take action as soon as you discover the presence of black mold. If you experience any of the above symptoms and are able to attribute a particular cause to them, it’s also worth investigating your home for black mold.
How Can I Prevent It?
Fortunately, there’s a handful of steps that you can take to help prevent the growth of black mold in your home. And, they are likely far simpler than you think.
Listed below are a few of the most notable.
Control the Presence of Moisture
This is one of the most important responsibilities that you have when it comes to preventing black mold from growing. Depending on where you live, it may be fairly difficult for you to control moisture within your home.
But, you should do so vigilantly in order to preserve your health. This obligation also applies to items that you store within your home. Anything wet or damp should be dried thoroughly before stowing it away.
Monitor Your Home’s Ventilation
A straightforward way that you can drastically reduce the likelihood of mold growth is by controlling your home’s ventilation. This is particularly true for those who have basements, as these are prime environments for mold to grow within.
In this scenario, you may need to install a foundation drain and utilize a dehumidifier in order to keep your basement sufficiently dry. If you find that mold has grown within other areas of your home, opening your windows on a regular basis can help resolve this issue.
You might also want to move furniture away from walls and keep closet doors open when possible.
Repair Leaks as Soon as Possible
When you notice a leak, it’s imperative that you fix it as soon as you can. More often than not, mold only takes two or three days to grow.
So, even a week could cause the growth of black mold in your home.
To help ensure that you catch these issues before they become a larger concern, check problem areas in your home approximately once per week.
These include under sinks, within bathrooms, etc. You should also check your attic, as it’s not unlikely for a roof leak to go unnoticed.
In regions that have particularly rainy seasons, you may experience a massive growth of black mold in this area of your home within a short period of time.
How Can I Get Rid of It?
If you do discover the presence of black mold in your house, you don’t need to panic. Getting rid of it is relatively straightforward.
It’s important to note that it’s virtually impossible to entirely remove the presence of mold. This is due to the fact that microscopic mold spores exist naturally almost everywhere on Earth.
Instead, a more practical response is mold remediation. This simply involves reducing mold levels back to a harmless range that has no negative impact on human health.
Fortunately, working with a professional can allow you to easily remediate any mold that you discover in your home. They can also test different surfaces in your home for the presence of mold, allowing you to eliminate issues before they arise.
So, keep this in mind when deciding how you plan to handle any black mold that you discover.
Dealing With Black Mold Can Seem Intimidating
But, it’s not as difficult as you might anticipate. The above information will ensure that everyone who is wondering “what is black mold” knows the appropriate course of action to take.
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