Common indoor strains include: Cladosporium, Alternaria, Penicillium, Aspergillus and the infamous Stachybotrys “Black Mold” which produce Mycotoxins that, through elevated and prolonged exposure, can damage living tissue and contribute to several health concerns including:
- Allergic Reactions/Human sensitivity – By far the most common through inhalation or contact with spores (i.e. itchy eyes, irritated skin, change in breathing patterns, odors, irritated sinus)
- Asthma – Exposure to spores can trigger or escalate an asthma episode
- Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis (a lung disease) – May develop after acute or chronic exposure
- Opportunistic Infections (OIs) – Exposure to an immunocompromised (weakened immune system) individual can lead to infections
- Organic Dust Toxic Syndrome (ODTS) – Produces flu-like symptoms
Another adverse outcome of a mold infestation is the deterioration of building materials which can compromise the structural components of the home. Not to mention the unwanted aesthetic effects mold can produce both visually and aromatically.