Simply put, mold is a type of fungi. It is the growth of multicellular filaments called hyphae and is considered a single organism. This single organism is made up of a connected network of branch-like hyphae and is referred to as a colony or in technical terms, a mycelium.
Like all fungi, mold draws energy from the organic matter in which they live. By decaying complex biopolymers into substances that they can absorb, mold plays an important role in the decomposition of organic material.
Basically, mold recycles.
We see this in the occurrence of spoiled food, composting, etc.
While mold is a form of recycle, it is also a form of healer. As some species cause disease or rot, others play an important role in the production of various foods, beverages, antibiotics, and enzymes.
In our daily lives mold is present everywhere in nature. It only becomes visible once mold colonies begin to grow. In artificial environments such as our homes, the humidity and temperatures are often perfect enough to begin its growth. These colonies take on the appearance of downy or furry coats growing mainly on food and other surfaces but can also be found airborne. Mold spores can remain airborne indefinitely as well as cling to clothing or fur and may be able to survive extreme temperatures and pressure.
Although mold spores are a common component of household and workplace dust, large quantities begin to cause health hazards to people, such as allergic reactions and respiratory problems.
In addition, there are some species that produce greater harm by their production of mycotoxins. Some studies have claimed that high levels of mycotoxins can lead to neurological problems and in some cases, death.
Molds found within the home are usually located within damp, dark, or steam filled areas such as bathrooms and basements. Regular symptoms to these household molds include watery, itchy eyes, chronic cough, headaches, migraines, difficulty breathing, rashes, tiredness, sinus problems, and frequent sneezing.
If mold is a problem within your home, it is important to clean it up and remove all excess water and moisture. Removing the moisture issue could be as simple as fixing leaky plumbing or sealing concrete floors, but repair of the problem depends on its degree and the issue at hand.
When cleaning mold of off hard surfaces, it is best to use detergent and water making sure all surfaces are completely dry when finished. For materials that are more porous, such as ceiling tiles, drywall or carpet, removal of mold may not be possible. These items may then need to be replaced by a trained professional.
If you believe that you have a mold issue in your home and wish to find out the extent of it, contact Golden State Home Inspections. The inspection process will help to determine how large of an issue mold is within your home.
If you have concerns about health issues related to mold, visit your family physician. They will be able to assess your health concerns and answers any questions that you may have regarding this matter.