Long-Term Effects of Mold Exposure

When completing a home improvement service call, it’s important to consider both visible and invisible hazards. Specifically, mold, which can enter a home through elements...

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When completing a home improvement service call, it’s important to consider both visible and invisible hazards. Specifically, mold, which can enter a home through elements that easily are exposed to and hold moisture, is a toxin that is not always easy to spot. Keep your clients safe and informed by understanding and communicating the signs of mold growth and the damage it’s capable of inflicting on the home.

Here are some long-term effects and signs of mold exposure:

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Respiratory Problems

Mold growth in a home forces tenants to inhale the toxins, which can produce an allergic reaction that is especially problematic for an individual’s respiratory system. At first, mold growth can be evident through homeowners experiencing sneezing, runny noses, watering or itchy eyes, or throat irritation. Over time, long-term effects of mold exposure can occur when tenants develop hypersensitivity pneumonitis, which is the swelling of the lungs that causes scarring and other irreversible damage. Mold toxicity has comparable symptoms to the flu and cannot be medicated with antibiotics. Asthma is also a common illness that worsens because of mold growth as consistent exposure weakens lung function in those with asthma.

Chronic Fatigue

Mycotoxins, the toxins that mold and other fungi produce, cause a variety of health issues. One of the most common health problems linked to this toxin is chronic fatigue. Feeling unrested after a full night’s sleep, memory and concentration problems and dizziness when laying are all related to chronic fatigue. In fact,mold inflames the hippocampus, which regulates our memory, comprehension, and sleep cycles. It can cause brain fog, which is essentially sluggish thinking. Chronic fatigue takes a toll on people’s day-to-day life through their relationships, job performance, mood, and exercise regime. It makes completing simple tasks more difficult, which becomes frustrating and defeating.

Recognizing Symptoms

Getting ahead of health problems inflicted by mold before they cause long-term damage means knowing the warning signs of mold toxins. Here are common signs of mold growth:

  • Allergy-like symptoms such as sneezing, coughing, runny nose, itchy throat
  • Fever
  • Headaches
  • Trouble breathing
  • Musty smell in the home

To an unsuspecting homeowner or technician, some of these symptoms may seem like a common cold or virus at first, but if your clients are noticing persisting pains and issues similar to those listed above, it’s time to inspect for mold. The severity of the long-term effects of mold exposure can be scary, so communicating simple mold prevention tactics like running a dehumidifier, purifying the air, and ensuring a home has proper airflow and ventilation are three easy tips to stop mold growth and side effects from getting out of hand. Even with this, technicians should frequently check homes for mold growth in order to get ahead of any potential problems that may arise.

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