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What health problems are associated with exposure to black mold?

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Quick Answer

Black mold and other types of mold can cause eye irritation, wheezing or skin irritations, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Certain people can have severe reactions and experience fever or shortness of breath. People with certain medical issues can develop fungal infections in the lungs.

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What health problems are associated with exposure to black mold?
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Full Answer

A study by the Institute of Medicine links exposure to indoor molds to upper respiratory tract symptoms and respiratory illness in otherwise healthy adults and children, states the CDC. People with asthma or COPD may have difficulty breathing. Black mold is a species of mold called Stachybotrys chartarum or Stachybotrys atra. This type of mold may look black or greenish-black in color. It grows in an environment where constant moisture is present.

Despite popular belief, it is not necessary to determine the type of mold in a home, explains the CDC. All mold should be treated as potentially hazardous to the health and be removed. Black mold may grow on paper, dust, lint, fiberboard or gypsum board. Water damage, water leaks, flooding, condensation or excessive humidity can lead to black mold growth. Any absorbent or porous materials such as ceiling tiles, drywall and carpet that harbor mold cannot be cleaned and must be thrown away.

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