Following are some excerpts from the EPA publication "A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture and Your Home". Learn more about mold by going to the EPA website at http://www.epa.gov.
Concrete before & after CONSEAL
Molds are part of the natural environment. Outdoors, molds play a part in nature by breaking down dead organic matter such as fallen leaves and dead trees, but indoors, mold growth should be avoided. Molds reproduce by means of tiny spores; the spores are invisible to the naked eye and float through outdoor and indoor air. Mold may begin growing indoors when mold spores land on surfaces that are wet. There are many types of mold, and none of them grow without water or moisture.
Molds are not usually a problem indoors, unless mold spores land on a wet or damp spot and begin growing. Molds have the potential to cause health problems. Molds produce allergens (substances that can cause allergic reactions), irritants, and in some cases, potentially toxic substances (mycotoxins). Inhaling or touching mold or mold spores may cause allergic reactions in sensitive individuals. Allergic responses include hay fever-type symptoms, such as sneezing, runny nose, red eyes and skin rash (dermatitis). Allergic reactions to mold are common. They can be immediate or delayed. Molds also cause asthma attacks in people with asthma who are allergic to mold. In addition, mold exposure can irritate the eyes, skin, nose, throat and lungs of both allergic and non-allergic people. Symptoms other than the allergic and irritant types are not commonly reported as a result of inhaling mold.
It is impossible to get rid of all mold and
mold spores indoors; some mold spores will be found floating through the
air and in house dust. The mold spores will not grow if moisture is
not present. Indoor mold growth can be prevented or controlled by
controlling moisture indoors. If there is mold growth in your home,
you must clean up the mold and fix the water problem. If you clean
up the mold, but don't fix the water problem, then, most likely, the mold
problem will come back.
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