Stachybotrys (Black Mold)
Do you know what causes black mold to grow?
Are you aware of the health effects of black mold exposure?
Do you know what to look for to identify black mold in your house?
Stachybotrys, also known as black or toxic mold, can be very harmful to those who are exposed to it for long periods of time. It’s commonly found in homes in hidden spots with excess moisture. To get a better idea of what to look out for and why it’s dangerous, read on!
Toxicity & Health Effects
Black mold is often called toxic, which is technically inaccurate. The mold itself is not toxic, but it releases toxins into the air which can be harmful. If these toxins are inhaled, it can result in serious health effects. To make things worse, mold is often hidden. People often have no idea that they’ve been exposed to black mold. If you think you may have inhaled black mold toxins, please see a doctor as soon as possible. Be aware of and look out for these symptoms of exposure:
- Skin inflammation
- Respiratory problems
- Damaged internal organs
- Mental impairment
- Suppressed immune system
Stachybotrys can look very similar to other types of mold, so we recommend that you contact an inspection company to identify what you’re dealing with. Black mold often appears as greenish-black substance that is slimy and wet on top. But keep in mind that it can also be dry and powdery depending on the climate.
Causes & Lifespan
Black mold can appear in a variety of ways. Warm conditions are usually needed to start it growing. Outside, it can grow on soil, plant debris, and other materials that are high in cellulose and low in nitrogen (common building materials). Inside, it starts in hidden damp spots, often caused by water leaks above ceilings, inside walls, and under floors.
Black Mold needs about a week with wet material to start growing. It can grow significantly over a span of 8-12 days. It is critical to take care of the mold as soon as you find it to avoid further growth and possible toxic exposure.
Since the toxins released from black mold are invisible and easily ingested, we strongly recommend that you don’t try to take care of it yourself. A certified professional will take all necessary safety precautions, classify the mold, and perform complete removal so you aren’t exposed to any more risk.
Guzi-West provides mold inspection and consulting services across northern California. If you’re worried that black mold may be growing in your house or business, give us a call! We’ll answer any questions you have and we’ll provide an accurate mold inspection to determine what kind of mold you’re dealing with.