Being around black mold is very bad for your health and can increase the chances that you’ll develop allergies, depression, asthma, and other health problems. A story showed that almost all chronic sinus infections can be traced back to mold exposure – yikes!
The toxins in black mold can also affect your immune system and central nervous system. Generally speaking, when the body is exposed to toxins, bodily functions are affected and eventually degraded.
Some of the signs that you’ve been exposed to mold include airway problems, coughing, runny nose, itchy/watering eyes, and more. A more severe reaction could include sinus infections, trouble breathing, nausea, fatigue, and more. An extreme reaction might include effects on your central nervous system, trouble concentrating or staying attentive, headaches, dizziness, and more. When it’s breathed in, certain types of black mold can kill cells needed to smell. And since your sense of smell triggers memory, this can lead to memory loss.
The scariest part is that black mold often looks like mildew or doesn’t have much appearance at all. It’s called “black mold” because it usually is black but technically it could change both in color and composition.
Like other types of mold, black mold grows in dark, damp places. So usually in places that are hidden such as cabinets, crawl spaces, basements, or places where water and steam are prevalent like kitchens and bathrooms. These spaces in particular should be properly ventilated to help prevent black mold growth. Black mold can be airborne or invisible, leaving it mostly undetected. When this happens, the amount of time you are exposed to it increases, which also increases your risk for the health problems associated with black mold.
While exposure to black mold is harmful at any age, it’s particularly bad when you are very young or very old. A child’s immune system is still developing and so when exposed to mold or toxins, it can react very badly and hinder development and growth.
The National Institute of Environmental Sciences says that very extreme exposure can result in death.
The best way to prevent black mold is to inspect your home and workspace often – a musty smell is usually a sign that mold is present.