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Mold refers to multiple types of fungi that grow in filaments and reproduce by forming spores. It is common in the natural environment and is constantly introduced to indoor living spaces by outside air, on people, and through food.
How do molds get in the indoor environment and how do they grow?
Mold spores may enter your house from the outside through open doorways, windows, and heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems with outdoor air intakes. Spores in the air outside also attach themselves to people and animals, making clothing, shoes, bags, and pets convenient vehicles for carrying mold indoors.
When mold spores drop on places where there is excessive moisture, such as where leakage may have occurred in roofs, pipes, walls, plant pots, or where there has been flooding, they will grow. Many building materials provide suitable nutrients that encourage mold to grow. Wet cellulose materials, including paper and paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, wood, and wood products, are particularly conducive for the growth of some molds. Other materials such as dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation materials, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery, commonly support mold growth.
The most common types of mold that are found indoors include: Cladosporium, Penicillium, Alternaria, and Aspergillus. Stachybotrys chartarum (also known as Stachybotrys atra and sometimes referred to as “black mold”) is a greenish-black mold that can also be found indoors.*
Individuals respond to mold exposure in a variety of ways. There is a large variation in individual susceptibility to the same exposure levels and the possibility of a person becoming sensitized to specific specie of mold growing in a certain location.
– Michael A. Pinto, January 2005 issue of Services magazine
Most fungi generally are not pathogenic to healthy humans. A very limited Click to see more}
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