What Effects Does Breathing Black Mold Have on the Body?

Black mold produces toxins called mycotoxins that can irritate the skin and air passages following exposure, notes MedicineNet. Severe reactions, such as difficulty breathing, may also develop, although this is uncommon. Allergic reactions, such as sneezing, tearing, coughing and wheezing, are the most common bodily effects related to mold exposure.

Black mold is greenish-black in color and typically found indoors. While it is not as prevalent as other types of mold, it can be just as harmful. All molds can trigger an attack in individuals with mold allergies or asthma, and mold can also cause fever and negative health reactions in those with compromised immune systems, according to MedicineNet. Short and extended periods of mold exposure have also been linked to hypersensitivity pneumonitis, a immunologic disease similar to pneumonia. Mold is also known to cause allergic reactions in healthy individuals. The degree and severity of the effects depend on the level of susceptibility in the individual and the extent of the mold exposure.

Mold forms tiny spores that have the ability to survive in very harsh conditions. These spores are invisible to the naked eye and travel quickly to different locations. Mold spores can survive in very dry environments, and when they come into contact with moisture, they begin to reproduce. Since all molds thrive in damp environments, controlling moisture is the best way to prevent or eliminate it, suggests MedicineNet.