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Mold appeared on our planet more than 200 million years ago. Actually, these are microscopic fungi, very toxic.
Mold spores are invisible, allowing them to spread everywhere. When favorable conditions are created, the fungus will begin to multiply actively.
Among those who are faced with mold infestation, there are many myths about this fungus. After all, mold can appear not only on the walls, but even on our food.
Mold is generally not hazardous to health. Some people think that mold is just an ugly fungus, not seeing it as a danger. And this myth is only strengthened thanks to the careless employees of housing maintenance offices. They tell people that moldy walls in their homes are not dangerous. But in no case should you believe this. Indeed, in the sanitary and epidemiological standards there is a list of types of molds, and the diseases that they cause.
The maximum that mold threatens is a small runny nose. In fact, these fungi belong to the III-IV group of pathogenic microorganisms. It is harmful both by inhalation and by simple skin contact. The result can be both wide spectrum allergic reactions (rhinitis, bronchitis, asthma, dermatitis) and deep damage to internal organs.
Mold can cause cancer. There is no scientific evidence that mold can cause cancer. The connection between them is possible only indirectly - through interaction on the immune system.
Only black mold is dangerous. In those rooms that have been damp (this can be the result of flooding or leakage), different types of molds with different properties can develop. For humans, they are all harmful to varying degrees. Nevertheless, such a manifestation itself is a reason to sound the alarm. You cannot live in rooms with mold! This is especially true for children, old people, as well as people with chronic diseases.
There should be no mold spores in the air at all. The air environment that surrounds us is initially a source of mold spores. So in the background, their presence is normal. It is impossible to get rid of them completely, and it is not necessary. One has only to know that as soon as favorable conditions are formed (usually this is humidity), then small spores will immediately begin to multiply rapidly.
To prevent spores in the apartment from multiplying, you must use an ultraviolet lamp at home. In itself, the use of such radiation sources is quite dangerous for humans. After all, these lamps form free radicals in the air. The use of ultraviolet radiation is permissible for medical institutions, but not permanently for an apartment. It makes no sense to get rid of single disputes, especially since they will appear after the airing accompanying the radiation session. And it itself is much more effective against viruses and bacteria. In many fungal spores, the cell walls are quite thick, which allows them to be protected from ultraviolet radiation. So it will be more correct to simply maintain the correct microclimate at home and prevent waterlogging of materials and the appearance of condensation on surfaces.
If mold once appears in the apartment, then it will no longer be possible to remove it. There is nothing supernatural about getting rid of mold in your home. First, you need to get advice from mycologists about exactly how much contaminated materials need to be removed and what antiseptics would be better to use when treating surfaces. Another option is the services of specialists who specialize in mold removal. They will even give a guarantee for their work. It is worth remembering that not all anti-mold products from those presented in hardware stores will be effective. In reality, only 2-3 remedies work, really reliably removing the mold and not allowing it to reappear. It would be naive to believe that there is some kind of remedy that will protect the house from mold forever, despite all possible cataclysms. Even the highest quality antiseptics decompose over time, a strong water leak will simply wash them away. And in the conditions of an apartment, some especially powerful agents are simply prohibited from using due to their high toxicity.
If you close up the mold with finishing materials, then there will be no harm from it. This myth is very dangerous because it downplays the danger of mold. But the spores of the mushrooms are so small that they can penetrate even the smallest gaps. This will allow them to infect the air in the apartment and create the very dangerous microclimate for allergy sufferers. Do not think that you will be able to brick up the mold once and for all. In this state, under the finishing materials, it will find itself in free conditions, in a kind of incubator. There the fungus will grow and over time it will still get out. Few people know that mold can decompose and destroy not only organic materials, but even metal, plastic, glass, concrete, brick and ceramics. Mold underneath the finishing materials will create a specific musty odor resulting from the production of VOCs. But by themselves, these ketones and aldehydes are harmful to humans.
Mold cannot appear in a week. Molds grow quite quickly, especially against the background of an abundance of moisture. If an accident occurs - a leak, a flood, a fire, then mold can appear on the walls after 5-7 days, if the room is not properly dried. In addition, modern finishing materials (plasterboard, vinyl, plastic) prevent the premises from drying out quickly. As a result, mold invisible to humans almost always develops under wall and floor coverings within 1-3 weeks after moisture gets there, and this infection is massive.
If there is no mold smell, then there is no mold itself either. And this myth is also cultivated by employees of housing maintenance offices. After all, this is how you can justify your inaction and lull the vigilance of residents after accidents and floods of apartments. But the appearance and development of mold is not always accompanied by the appearance of a characteristic musty smell. It all depends on the duration and degree of damage, on the type of fungus that has appeared.
If the mold is treated with an antiseptic, then its remnants can no longer be removed. This myth is also dangerous, because even after treatment with an antiseptic, mold spores retain toxic and allergenic properties. The allergenicity of the fungus has little to do with its viability; the components that make up the mold cells play a role here. That is why it is necessary to completely remove the building materials affected by mold - wallpaper, paint, putty, plaster and drywall.
The best remedy for mold is copper sulfate. This remedy has long been an anachronism in the fight against mold. Vitriol is a poisonous heavy metal compound. In large quantities, it is simply dangerous to human life. And it takes a lot of copper sulfate to really defeat the mold. Today, there are much more effective and safer means to resist the fungus.
Mold can appear a year after the flooding of the apartment. If the apartment is quickly dried after the flood and after a couple of months there are no signs of mold, then its appearance in a year will be associated with other reasons. It is important to remember that mold can quickly develop not only on a damp surface.
After a flood, mold can "migrate" away from neighbors. If a strong flood hits several apartments or floors, mold is likely to appear everywhere, maybe not at the same time. Then, in each apartment, it will most likely appear independently. After all, there are many internal sources that "shoot" under the influence of moisture. Damp ceilings, walls and floors will make themselves felt. It cannot be denied that if there is a highly contaminated housing near the apartment for many months and even years, then mold can grow from there. But in case of accidents, do not blame the neighbors. After all, mold spores are always invisible next to us, and moisture will quickly help them germinate.
You can eat food if you remove mold from it. This issue should be approached with extreme caution. It all depends on the type of mold. If we talk about the fungus that affects meat, bakery or confectionery, as well as fruits, vegetables, cereals and nuts, then it produces toxins that penetrate very deeply into the product. Eating such food, even after superficial cleaning of mold, can lead to poisoning of the body and damage human health. But mold-affected cheese can be consumed, but you will have to remove a layer of at least a centimeter thick. Jam, jelly, and jam are also edible if you remove a couple of centimeters of the affected layer. But is it worth taking such a risk?