Water Damage and Mold | Part 2

Fungi Exposure
Personal fungi exposure may be from a variety of mold components including:

  • Cell fragments
  • Spores
  • Other cell-related products

They may be allergenic, infectious or toxic. Every person will react differently to mold. Some will suffer next to no symptoms from exposure, where others show immediate and severe signs of exposure. Children and the elderly are especially susceptible to the health problems caused by mold. Mold is systemic and opportunistic and can affect the entire body. Molds of different types can also grow together, and when they do, they magnify toxicity. This is a function that is called synergism.

What is Mold and Mildew?
“Mold” is a simple class of fungi. It’s often used as the term to describe any fuzzy growth seen on surfaces.

The terms “mold” and “fungi” are used interchangeably. “Mold,” however, is more commonly used to describe these kinds of growth.

The term “mildew” is often used interchangeably with “mold” and “fungi” although mildew is actually fungi that causes plant disease.

Spores
Spores are the reproductive structures (just like seeds) that allow mold to spread to other areas. They are small and light (half a million spores can fit on a penny) and are easily transported through the air.

Spores can remain dormant for longer than 20 years until the right conditions are present for growth. The good news is that only about 20% of spores are viable (able to produce more fungi), but whether or not the spores are literally dead or alive they can still produce allergens and may even be toxic to people!