Black Mold: The Facts!

Black Mold: The Facts!

You often hear about black mold in the media.

For instance, a news article featured a woman who thought she was poisoned by black mold. After being exposed to black mold Dana Anhalt: “became ravaged by excruciating joint pain….My symptom list stretched to four single-spaced pages. I started fading fast as every system of my body broke down.”

Anderson Brothers Steamatic is passionate about indoor air quality and specialize in mold removal. One of our goals is to educate consumers and business owners in Kalamazoo, Portage, Battle Creek, Grand Rapids, Ada, Holland, and Southwestern Michigan.

In order to accomplish this objective, we have launched this blog to offer you free and valuable information that will help you understand the many concerns caused by mold and assist you in making informed decisions in the event that you do find mold in your home or business.

This article explores the topic of black mold, explaining what exactly it is, why it grows, and the potential health consequences of exposure, listing the top 15 health issues that black mold, also known as Stachybotrys, causes.

If you are concerned that you may have black mold growing in your home or business, please contact us, we are here to help! 🙂

Black Mold Is The King Of Mold!

Black Mold Is The King Of Mold!

Stachybotrys molds decay organic matter. The most common species, Stachybotrys chartarum, sometimes referred to as Stachybotrys atra often grows indoors.

Ideal conditions for Stachybotrys growth include moisture, a nutrient/food source, temperature, and time. Ideal humidity for this black mold is a relative humidity of 90% or higher for it to begin the germination growth process. Stachybotrys feeds on materials with a high cellulose content such as hay, straw, wood chips, and building materials such as ceiling tile, drywall, paper vapor barriers, wallpaper, insulation backing, cardboard boxes, and paper files.

Stachybotrys is considered the King of Molds because it will develop into the dominant mold group if the conditions are favorable and will crowd out the other molds that began feeding on the material first.

Unlike other molds like Aspergillus, Penicillium, and Cladosporium which begin growing within one to two days, Stachybotrys takes one to two weeks to begin growing.

When Stachybotrys mold is growing on wet material, the spores do not disperse as easily because the spores are held together by a sticky/slimy coating. However, when the material dries out or is disturbed, the spores will spread through the air.

The main concern of Anderson Brothers Steamatic is to prevent the spread of toxic black mold. The most effective method of doing this is through containment, which is the process of creating a poly barrier around the area where the Stachybotrys mold is growing.

This procedure is so important because Stachybotrys spreads by releasing spores. Mold contaminated materials must be removed and disposed of because this mold does not just grow on the surface of the material; it has root-like tendrils called mycelia, meaning it is able to penetrate the surface.

Typically Stachybotrys mold grows in clusters at the end of stem-like structures known as hyphae.

Black Mold Can Make You Sick!

Black Mold Can Make You Sick!

According to the CEO of Wonder Makers Environmental, Michael Pinto, there is mounting evidence that mold causes sickness:

There is now good science that documents that exposure to fungal contaminants and damp environments not only triggers standard allergenic responses, but pushes certain parts of the immune system into overdrive. In essence, the body’s defense system ends up attacking the host as well as the biological invaders. (The Answer to the Mold Illness Questions Is: All of the Above)

In 2009, the World Health Organization, produced a 228 page document entitled WHO Guidelines for Indoor Air Quality: Dampness and Mould and concluded the following:

When sufficient moisture is available, hundreds of species of bacteria and fungi – particularly mould – pollute indoor air. The most important effects of exposure to these pollutants are the increased prevalence of respiratory symptoms, allergies, and asthma, as well as disturbance of the immune system. Preventing (or minimizing) persistent dampness and microbial growth on interior surfaces and building structures is the most important means of avoiding harmful effects on health.

Many mold survivors chronically exposed to mold develop a condition known as Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS), defined as:

An accute and chronic, systemic inflammatory response syndrome acquired following exposure to the interior environment of a water-damaged building with resident toxigenic organisms, including, but not limited to fungi, bacteria, actinomycetes and mycobacteria as well as inflammagens such as endotoxins, beta glucans, hemolysins, proteinases, mannans, c-type lectins and possibly spirocyclic drimanes, plus volatile ogranic compounds.” (What is Mold Illness? Better yet, do people get sick after being exposed to water-damaged buildings?)

CIRS is associated with 37 health symptoms, including asthma, dizziness, migraines, and bronchitis.

15 Health Problems Caused By Black Mold!

15 Health Problems Caused By Black Mold!

Stachybotrys produces a mycotoxin (i.e., poison from a fungus) named trichothecenes.

Stachybotrys black mold is a health concern because animal studies have shown that one of the major effects of trichothecenes is immuno-suppression.

In fact, even low level exposure can suppress the immune system resulting in bacterial and viral infections, coughing, skin irritation, and other allergic reactions, and there is some speculation that it may even cause cancer.

Listed below are the top 15 health conditions caused when toxic Stachybotrys black mold is inhaled or ingested:

  1. Sore/hoarse throat
  2. Cold and flu symptoms (headaches, slight fever, and muscle aches)
  3. Nosebleeds
  4. Tingling or burning of nose, mouth, and perspiration areas (under the arms or between the legs)
  5. Chronic fatigue
  6. Dizziness
  7. Nausea/vomiting
  8. Memory loss
  9. Attention deficit/concentration problems
  10. Personality changes such as irritability or depression
  11. Neurological disorders such as tremors
  12. Hair loss
  13. Coughing with blood
  14. Bleeding in the lungs (hemosiderosis)
  15. Damage to internal organs including blood, liver, kidneys, and lungs

Got Black Mold Questions?

Got Black Mold Questions?

If you are concerned that you may have black mold in your home or business that requires removal, contact Anderson Brothers Steamatic, serving consumers and business owners in Kalamazoo, Portage, Battle Creek, Grand Rapids, Ada, Holland, and Southwestern Michigan

For Immediate Assistance Call Your Local Office!

In Kalamazoo/Portage, MI call 269-327-9950

In Grand Rapids/Ada, MI call 616-949-2453

In Holland, MI call 616-399-8484

In Battle Creek, MI call 269-963-6989

Anderson Brothers Steamatic serves Southwest Michigan, call 1-800-564-4491