After a flood, water leak or fire, any materials exposed to moisture can become the perfect breeding ground for various species of mold. Once one of these mold colonies start to reproduce, toxic spores enter the air and settle on other surfaces inside the structure. People and pets draw them into their bodies by simply breathing the air.

Consider these three reasons why you must remove mold from a home or commercial building as quickly as possible after a natural or man-made event that creates too much moisture in the structure:

1. Mold Exacerbates Asthma and Allergies

Initial exposure to mold can cause wheezing and make it difficult for asthma patients to breathe. Reactions to mold can also cause painful and unsightly skin rashes. Sometimes people have such severe reactions that the breakouts result in permanent scars. Reactions can also include painful inflammation, sinus congestion, nasal discharge, itchy eyes and oral allergy symptoms. Someone who has a mild mold allergy can develop a more severe one over time and even allergies and sensitivities to things that never caused problems before. Healthy people who have never had allergies can develop ones after prolonged mold exposure because their immune system becomes damaged by mold toxins.

2. Mold Compromises Systems in the Body

Toxic mold syndrome, a subset of sick building syndrome related to mold, can cause far more insidious physical harm than allergic reactions. The toxins in mold can adversely affect and even permanently damage the brain and central nervous system resulting in a person having physical, cognitive and emotional problems. Beyond causing immune system dysfunction related to allergies, mold can also affect how the immune system handles other things. For example, although mold doesn’t seem to cause lung, skin or other cancers on its own, mold can damage the immune system so badly that it can’t fight existing cancer cells as well. As a result, cancer then spreads more rapidly and increases the rate at which the immune system weakens. The chronic inflammation caused by reactions to mold can damage healthy cells and create an environment that helps existing cancer cells grow.

3. Mold Helps Other Microorganisms to Take Over

With a weakened immune system, the human body has more difficulty fighting off infections and infestations. Mold can colonize in the body as a primary infection. The body can also develop secondary infections from overgrowth of other species of fungi that normally exist in small quantities inside the body like Candida albicans. The body also can’t fight bacteria, viruses and parasites that people are often exposed to every day as easily. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria can become an even bigger problem in someone who has become immunocompromised from mold exposure.

It’s important to remember that symptoms caused by mold can mask other acute and chronic health conditions that develop concurrently. Mold’s affect on the body can make diagnosing and treating these conditions harder as a result.

As you can see, mold colonization in a high moisture environment is no laughing matter. The best way to remove existing colonies and prevent future ones is via professional restoration services. Gateway Restoration is proud to offer residential and commercial owners mold removal in Mesa, Phoenix, Scottsdale and other major metro areas. Our experienced technicians do more than make a structure safe again by eliminating mold from surfaces and the interior air. They also educate clients and teach prevention. For more information about this topic or to schedule a free evaluation, contact us today.