Mold is a type of fungi found in many places, especially in wet, damp, and dark environments. Their presence is vital to the sustenance of the environment since they are needed to break down dead materials and keep the food chain going. It is common to find them in places such as dark basements, bathrooms with leaking taps, damp walls, and within air vents. Prolonged mold exposure comes with a myriad of health complications, and it is something that should always be avoided. If you suspect mold infestation within your living spaces, be sure to call for mold remediation services as soon as possible to avert all the potential risks following exposure.
The population at risk of mold exposure
If you live or work in spaces with poor lighting or in places under constant damp conditions and poor ventilation, then you are likely to be exposed to this type of fungi. Some of the population segments that are at great risk of long-term effects of breathing in mold include elderly persons, infants and children, people with existing respiratory conditions such as asthma, and people who are already immunocompromised.
If you are wondering what might happen to you in the long term if you breathe air infested with mold, then read below to find out more:
Allergies and asthma
Allergies and asthma are not only the most common long-term effects of breathing in mold, but are also the very first symptoms that may draw your attention to the presence of this type of fungi within your living spaces. If you already suffer from allergies, or if you have a respiratory condition such as asthma, then breathing in air containing mold spores will make the condition worse both in the short term and the long term.
If you don’t have any of these conditions, however, but you keep on breathing air filled with mold, then it will be just a matter of time before you start developing allergies and respiratory conditions such as asthma. Therefore, if you suspect that there could be a mold infestation within your living quarters, be sure to call for mold removal services to come and make your living spaces safe again.
Infections within the respiratory tract
Allergies and asthma are not the only health risks you may run into when you breathe air filled with this type of fungi for a long time. There are several studies that suggest that spending time in moldy environments increases your chances of suffering from respiratory infections and bronchitis. One of the conditions that you are likely to suffer from under such circumstances is allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis.
This is a condition caused by the aspergillus variant of mold. It can potentially lead to conditions such as asthma, cystic fibrosis, and other immune deficiencies that may end up compromising your health. The other fungal infections you are likely to develop owing to prolonged exposure to mold include thrushes and athlete’s foot.
Pulmonary hemorrhage is a condition developed when there is bleeding in the lungs. It is a condition associated with prolonged exposure to this type of fungi, especially mycotoxins from a fungus known as Stachybotrys chartarum. The condition is predominantly common in children below the age of five years. As such, it is vital that if you have children within this age bracket, you must not expose them to moldy conditions. In case you suspect an infestation, it is important that you call for mold remediation services as soon as possible before the health of your loved ones is affected.
Studies suggest that long-term mold exposure may also lead to problems such as memory loss, low concentration, and poor judgment. In addition to memory loss, you may also suffer from short-term memory if you have been breathing air filled with mold for a long time.
Poor mental health
Those who have been exposed to moldy air for a long time have also reported poor mental health normally associated with the physical issues and the stresses associated with dealing with moldy environments. Some of these stressors that may end up causing the victims to have poor mental health include mood swings, depression, confusion, and anxiety, among others.
When you constantly breathe in air infested with mold, your immune system will be in a constant fight against all the diseases that this type of fungi may cause within the body. As such, your body will be compelled to work harder so as to fight the diseases and keep you healthy. In the process, you will be left in a state of constant fatigue. If you have pre-existing conditions such as asthma, it may worsen and you may feel lethargic most of the time.
In addition to a pulmonary hemorrhage that is predominantly common in children exposed to mold, breathing in air with mold over a long time may cause additional lung issues. This is because mold usually attacks the pulmonary system in general, and even before accessing the lungs, it can cause serious damage to all the associated components within the pulmonary system.
How to get rid of mold from your indoor spaces
With all the risks associated with breathing in mold, it is prudent that you should take all the necessary precautions to ensure that you don’t have any form of mold infestation within your living spaces. You can start by fixing all water leaks around the house. Leaky faucets or broken pipes will normally help in creating the perfect conditions for mold propagation.
You also need to conduct a visual inspection for signs of mold. Should you notice black, grey, or green patches on the wall that might suggest the presence of mold, call for mold removal services immediately so that the infestation can be stopped as soon as possible.
Also, ensure that damp conditions don’t prevail within your living spaces. Open all the windows to clear humidity and to allow for proper circulation of air to avoid indoor mold growth.