A cold, wet winter or warm, humid summer can lead to high humidity and mold in the home. It can grow on walls, bathtubs, curtains, clothes, books, toys – literally anything. Mold in the home can turn valuable items into musty heirlooms that look more like trash. Mold fungi produce large quantities of spores that spread through the air. There are so many of them in the atmosphere outdoors and indoors that we are always breathing spores – to a greater or lesser extent.
Types Of Household Molds
Mold is a colony of a single-celled fungus that develops from spores, which in a preserved state are constantly present in the air in huge quantities. Molds grow on concrete, paint or stone. You can see them as spots or dots in black, brown, blue or green. Mold destroys building and decorating material almost to the ground, forcing more and more often to repair and sometimes rebuild buildings.
The color of this type of mold depends not only on its species, but also on the stage of development and the material on which it grows. As a rule, the following strains are black:
|Ulocladium||Group 4 pathogenicity, affecting not only materials but also products. Very demanding to the presence of moisture.|
|Cladosporium||In mycological examinations, it is the third most frequently found fungus, following Penicillium and Aspergillus.|
|Penicillium||They belong to groups 3 and 4 of pathogenicity and pose a significant danger to human health, in addition, they are very often found in apartments.|
|Alternaria||A very common fungus of group 4 pathogenicity. It most commonly affects fruits and vegetables, but can also grow on the skin and respiratory tract in humans.|
|Aspergillus||This type of mold causes aspergillosis in humans and animals. The fungus itself is initially white, but its spores are black. It is most commonly found indoors.|
|Chaetomium||Typically colored black. Causes allergies in humans. The main danger is when entering the digestive tract. There are known fatal cases caused by this fungus.|
|Phoma||The fourth group of pathogenicity. Almost always the fungus is black and the spores are colorless.|
|Wallemia||It is colored black, does not pose a serious danger to humans, can grow in conditions of low humidity and high temperatures.|
White mold, unlike black mold, is much less disturbing to people. Most often it can be found on the ground, wood, plants, bread and cheese. In apartments, it is usually found in flower pots and quite rarely on walls. If white mold gets on the ground in a flower pot, some strains will die if watered regularly with dilute citric acid.
The bluetongue fungus affects the fibers of the wood, and the surface of the wooden house is not at all a noble gray-blue color. The damage from bluetongue is not only aesthetic. It easily penetrates through the paint film. It creates pathways for water to enter, which in turn increases the moisture content of the wood. Then there is nothing to prevent the penetration and attachment in the neighborhood and mold. Pine is particularly susceptible to bluetongue.
How Mold Gets Into the House
Mold spores are everywhere, both indoors and outdoors, but they are not visible to the naked eye. Spores can get into homes:
- With the air: through open windows, doorways and ventilation systems.
- By attaching to objects and people: on clothing, shoes, and on the hair of pets.
But mold will only appear in the house if the spores get to the place where there are conditions for its growth. In particular, such as humidity and a supply of appropriate nutrients. If the environment doesn’t suit them, mold spores usually don’t develop.
Environments in which mold frequently appears include:
- Places where water leaks and flooding have occurred;
- Windows where condensation accumulates;
- Places where there is poor air circulation, such as behind a closet.
There are mold spores in all rooms, but they are dangerous to humans only under certain conditions. In particular, people with weakened immune systems have a higher risk of getting sick if mold and mold spores are present in their environment. This risk is especially high for those who also have problems with their respiratory system. Such, as well as allergic sensitized individuals, may feel allergic reactions. Keeping a room clean, dry, and well ventilated is the best way to prevent mold from developing. Anyone who is having problems with mold in their home, workplace, school or other facility should seek medical advice.