Mold allergy problems are common. A small number of mold types cause most allergic reactions. Other articles on this site cover specific types of mold.
Allergies are just one of many health problems that toxic mold can cause. Some of these health can potentially be very serious. This depends on the kind of mold. Some molds affect people only if they are allergic to it. Toxic mold is a health problem for everyone, especially when they are carcinogenic.
Is all mold bad? No, in fact certain types of cheeses are defined by the type of mold used to make them.
There thousands of species of molds. When it comes to a mold allergy, there are only a few dozen species that commonly cause allergies. The most common problems are caused by molds from the following genera:
Because mold is so prevalent, a mold allergy can be persistent. Unlike a pollen allergy, mold allergies can persist throughout the year.
There is a lot you can do to reduce your exposure to mold. This website will explain many of these.
Mold can be found anywhere that it is damp, and if you live in a humid climate, you will have mold in your living space. You can do a mold inspection yourself, but a good mold inspector can be very helpful in finding the source of toxic mold, and determining what areas are a problem, and which are not.
Even if you live in a dry climate, your house can have damp areas that grow mold, such as your bathroom and kitchen. This is usually not a problem, unless there are leaks in the plumbing, or around the sink/shower/bath that allow water spilled on the counter or other surfaces into dark areas that hold moisture and grow mold.
Note:Some soruces state that Helmin thosporium(sic) can trigger allergy symptoms in humans. This may not be accurate.
Mold Allergy in the Air
We are constantly exposed to mold spores and byproducts in the air. Dry areas have considerably less, and damp areas considerably more. Very dry locations may have no mold at all (assuming such locations have never been wet).
Most people live in an environment with at least some mold. Even if the geographical location is dry perfectly, the inside of your house is not.
The tiny amounts of mold present in the average healthy environment is not a problem for most people. Even if you have a mold allergy, it is usually excesivly damp conditions that pollute the are with mold.
Mold Allergy in Food
Most properly stored food is mold-free. There are notable exceptions: many types of cheese for example, and improperly stored food, or food that has been sitting about for too long.
If you are allergic to mold, you should not keep left-overs for more than three days. You can freeze left-overs if you need to keep them mold-free for extended periods.
- Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America
- Medical College of Wisconsin