What Is Mould?
Mould, which is a fungus, is a eukaryotic microorganism that decomposes dead organic materials like wood, plants and leaves. The hair-like, spory bodies of a single mould colony are too tiny for us to see with our naked eyes and are best viewed under a microscope. However, when a colony accumulates and grows big, it will often appear as black, green or blue. It is important to note that the colour is determined by the type of mould and is influenced by its nutrient source, the age of the colony, and the surface substrate.
For mould to grow, it needs water; without water, it just cannot thrive. At the same time, mould also needs oxygen, a food source, and a temperature that ranges between 4 to 37 degrees Celsius. Since it decomposes dead organic matter (lignin, hemicellulose, and cellulose), mould can grow on paper, wood, and other materials made using wood.
The Dangers Of Mould
Since most of our homes are made from or using wood, most of them are highly susceptible to mould infestations. It is important to note that this fungus can be quite dangerous when not taken care of in good time. Exposure to mould spores from indoor fungal growths happens more often than people realise and the presence of the fungus may not be immediately noticed. When these spores are inhaled, they trigger symptoms like asthma or sinus congestion and could even lead to other health issues – this is because mould produces mycotoxins which are toxic to different organs of our bodies.
Mould Infestation: Signs To Look Out For
As such, it is important that you be keen enough to know when you have a mould infestation so that you can have it removed before it becomes a problem. Here are some warning signs that will let you know if you have a mould problem in your home.
- A strange, musty odour: Mould has a rather pungent smell. When there is a mould colony in one area of your home, it is likely that you’ll notice an unpleasant smell when you enter the area. This fungus can sometimes live behind wallpaper or within walls, and this could make it quite hard to associate the strange smell with mould. If you notice any unusual and persistent odours in your home, then the number one culprit could be mould.
- The appearance of a mould colony: Since mould thrives in wet and damp conditions, it is important to investigate areas of your home that are in contact with water or moisture constantly like in your bathroom and kitchen - the good thing is that it is quite easy to distinguish between mould and soap scum. In areas like a cellar or basement, you probably will have to do some more investigation to find it. Mould usually takes hold of damp areas. Therefore, investigate areas in the basement or cellar that seem a bit damp for any signs.
- Health symptoms: As mould isn’t always visible, it can, sometimes, be difficult to realise that you have a problem. However, if you feel congested, listless and your eyes water while in your home, then it is likely that there’s mould present.
- Discoloration: Most mould strains cause the material they are consuming to change colour. Be it the food source is dry wallpaper or human food, as long as the colony has had enough time to establish itself, then there is a likelihood that the affected area will have a change in colour, revealing a mould problem.
If you experience or see some of these issues when you get home or do your investigations, then it is highly likely that you have a serious problem and need mould remediation services to get rid of this fungus. Talk to a mould removal expert today for more information, advice and help.