Let’s talk about mold for a minute, shall we?
There are thousands of species of mold in the world, and horrifyingly, 12 of them are commonly found in homes. Homes just like yours with families just like yours living in them. However, that mold may have been there for years and you never realized, although you may very well have felt the effects.
So how do you recognize whether or not there’s mold in your home? Some people, especially those with allergies, are more sensitive to mold than others. But given enough mold in an enclosed space, most people will start to have at least low-level symptoms.
Here are some common symptoms to watch for:
- Coughing, sneezing, runny nose
- Watery, itchy eyes
- Frequent migraines and/or headaches
- Difficulty breathing
- Sinus problems
If you or other members of your household experience these types of afflictions regularly it could be ordinary allergies. But it could also be that you have some mold growing in your home. Mold likes to live in warm, damp environments such as bathrooms, attics, basements, and under sinks.
Another prime environment for mold is in your duct work and/or your air conditioning system. Mold just loves to grow in places like this and the bad news is that if it does get into your ducts or AC, it will blow throughout the home. And that, understandably, wreaks havoc on your family’s health.
You can absolutely have your home tested for mold if you suspect you might have a problem (call us for a referral to some great companies who can test for you).
But if you aren’t quite ready to shell out the money for mold testing, there are other measures you can take, including:
- Fixing any leaks in your home (roof, pipes, etc.)
- Putting dehumidifiers in areas of your home with high humidity
- Ensuring you have proper ventilation throughout the home
- Regularly cleaning areas prone to warmth and moisture (with bleach, if you can)
And last, but not least, invest in getting your duct work cleaned every 3-5 years.
A good duct cleaning company will not only ensure that your duct work, furnace, and vents are clean; they will also use a sanitizing spray that kills any mold and bacteria lingering in the duct work.
And having your duct work cleaned is usually cheaper than testing for mold and then hiring a mold remediation company to fix the problem.
For a deeper dive on mold, how it affects your health and home, and what to do, you can also check out these excellent resources:
The Center for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) – Facts About Mold & Dampness
Nat’l Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) – Dealing With Mold in Your Home
Nat’l Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) – Tips for Preventing Mold Growth in Your Home