If you are constantly feeling sick and suspect it might be as a result of mold exposure, there are higher chances that you may be right. However, it is not always easy to determine whether mold exposure is the cause of your respiratory problem, as it could be caused by other elements such as dust, pet dander, and poor ventilation. People react differently to mold toxicity, which usually requires a proper diagnosis to evaluate the cause of their condition. Below are several ways to know if your respiratory problem stems from mold exposure and when to seek medical help.
- Visual Indicators of Mold Growth
Visible mold is definitely a sign that you are subject to mold exposure. Mold can easily be noticed by its green, black or gray color and slimy texture residue. Some types of mold spores often go unnoticed because they look like ordinary dirt or soot. No matter how small you see any visible mold, there are high chances that some mold spores are lingering in the air. The fact that you have visual indicators of mold growth means that your home has the right conditions for mold to grow.
- Positive Mold Test Results
If you had samples taken from your house to test for mold presence, the professionals will carry out extensive research before processing the results. If it turns out that your indoor air quality is compromised by mold spores floating around your house, then you may have been exposed to mold. Inhaling the spores accidentally causes respiratory problems such as breathing problem, runny nose, throat irritation, coughing, and sneezing. All these symptoms are natural mechanisms used by your body to get rid of mold spores that you inhaled or ingested. The mold test results will also determine the appropriate method of mold remediation so that your home can be safe for you and your family.
- Musty Moldy Odor
Smelling a musty odor is one of the early signs of mold growth. Once mold has found a good place to grow, it continues to multiply by releasing mold spores and other mycotoxins that may impact negatively on your respiratory health. The fact that you cannot see mold does not mean you do not have a mold problem. In most cases, you will notice a musty odor when walking through your front door or entering a particular room such as your basement. Most often, you will notice the difference in the smell as you transition from the fresh air in the outdoors to the musty odor awaiting for you indoors. Since you spend most of the time at home, it is most likely that you will suffer from a breathing issue because of prolonged mold exposure.
- Frequent Allergies and Asthma Attacks
If you always feel better when away from home but feel sick when at home then your respiratory problem could be stemming from mold exposure. People who are allergic to mold will often react by sneezing, coughing, or wheezing every time they get into a room that has a mold problem. Others may also experience a runny nose, watery or itchy eyes, and rashes. Individuals who are asthmatic may constantly suffer from asthma attacks that can reach critical levels if nothing is done to mitigate the problem.
- Indication of Water Issues
If you have ever experienced flooding in your home, there is a high likelihood that your house was affected by mold. It usually grows in areas where stagnant water stayed the longest. Basements are usually the most vulnerable areas in a home because water might have slipped through the cracks in the walls or foundation. Burst pipes and leaking roofs create a perfect environment for mold to grow. They are the primary reason behind hidden or recurring mold which causes severe health problems. You are more likely to suffer from respiratory problems due to prolonged mold exposure that came due to the water issues.
Mold exposure needs to be taken seriously since it could cause serious health complications. It does not always matter whether the mold is visible or not. What matters is that any mold presence poses a significant threat to your respiratory health. It is important to seek medical help if you start noticing mold symptoms such as sneezing, coughing, wheezing, asthma attacks, itchy eyes, and runny nose. Although not all symptoms stem from mold exposure, a thorough diagnosis helps identify the primary cause of your respiratory problem and how your condition can be treated.