Mold comes in a range of colors and textures. They can be black, brown, yellow, pink, and green. Sometimes they smell, and at times they appear fuzzy. You may be familiar with the greenish-black Stachybotrys chartarum, or toxic black mold, as it is commonly known. It is found on wood, fiberboard, gypsum board, paper, dust, and lint, and according to Dr. Jill Carnahan, is a sign of past water damage or higher than usual moisture. However, black mold is hardly the only mold worthy of concern. As the National Capital Poison Center explains, mold is a broad term used to describe different types of fungi. These fungi spread through pores activated by moisture, which is why damp bathrooms, cellar floors, air conditioners, and potted plants are ripe environments for mold.
Mold sensitivity varies from person to person. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cite a study that found mold exposure is linked to respiratory issues in otherwise healthy people. Mold exposure can trigger an asthma attack in asthma patients and can be especially dangerous to people with chronic lung illnesses. Parents with young children should be particularly wary, as mold exposure at a young age is linked to the development of asthma. In other words, mold is nothing to take lightly.
If you believe you may have been exposed to mold, scan your body for such symptoms as skin rashes, recurring coughing, and frequent headaches. If your symptoms worsen on rainy days, you should contact your doctor, as urged by the CDC. When checking your home for mold, Dr. Jill Carnahan advises looking for water damage, discoloration and leaks in the roof. Wherever you find mold, spray straight vinegar on the offending spot. Allow it to sink in and then wipe away with a rag, sponge, or paper towel. The Huffington Post says you can also use vodka in the same manner.
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