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Archive for February, 2011

Health Risks of Toxic Mold

Friday, February 25th, 2011

If you live in a humid area you are very liable to experience health risks related to toxic mold. As explained in this article, Black Mold is a greenish-black fungi found worldwide that colonizes particularly well in high-cellulose material such as straw, hay, wet leaves, dry wall, carpet, wall paper, fiber-board, ceiling tiles, thermal insulation, etc. The fungus, before drying, is wet and slightly slimy to touch.

This is one of the toxic molds and it is one of the main contributors to mold-related health risks. This type of fungus does not grow on plastic, vinyl, concrete products, or ceramic tiles. Neither is it found in the green mold on bread or in the black mold on shower tiles.

Black mold often occurs in areas where flooding has taken place, but also sights of minor water leaks, condensation, and water releases. To some people exposure to Black mold will merely present a health risk, but to others it could be fatal.

The 10 most common health risks associated with toxic mold are:

1. pulmonary hemorrhage or pulmonary hemosiderosis (primarily in infants)

2. nose bleeds

3. immune system suppression (resulting in increasing numbers of infections)

4. hair loss

5. dermatitis

6. chronic fatigue

7. psychological depression

8. diarrhea

9. sore throats

10. headaches and other flu-like symptoms

The only method to determine the type of mold present is by sample analysis by a laboratory. Be aware of your health concerns. If symptoms like any of these are persistent look into a mold problem around your home.

For any of your Environmental needs contact Atlantic Environmental Solutions here!

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Are These Spots Mold or Mildew?

Friday, February 18th, 2011

Mold and mildew are things that are present in most homes. As presented here, there are easy ways to identify both. Mold and mildew thrive in wet places. But, there is a difference in their infestation sites. Mold is usually present in places where there is organic matter such as wood, food, and plants. Mildew survives easily in places of inorganic matter such as moist walls, cracks and fabrics.

One way to detect mold is by its smell. Mold seems to have a much more apparent odor than mildew. It is usually a scent similar to that of rotting food. If you suspect a spore is mold but cannot smell it, simply vacuum the area and release the spores into the air to release the scent.

Another way to determine if you have mold or mildew is to perform a basic home test. Simply wash a patch with soap and water and do not dry it. If the stain does not resurface it is mold. However, if it grows back, it is likely that it is mildew.

The look of a spot can also determine whether it is mold or mildew. Mildew typically has a black or dark-grayish coloration while mold can range from black to white to gray, green or red. If the color is difficult to identify, check the texture. Mildew is usually velvety or powdery.

Lastly, mold can be detected by humans by allergic reaction. Although allergies to mildew are possible, reactions to mold are very common and can be severe. Children, asthmatics, and people with breathing issues are more susceptible to reactions to mold, so keep an eye on what could be mold for this reason.

For any questions about your home environment, mold, or mildew, contact Atlantic Environmental Solutions today.

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There’s water — and then there’s contaminated water.

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

Home flooding due to the ravages of Mother Nature – or something as simple as a broken pipe – means there’s unwanted water in the house to be dealt with quickly and correctly. When the water is or becomes contaminated, a homeowner’s troubles are compounded. This article let’s take a look at these twin problems.

Indoor flooding most often involves a basement or crawl space as water invariably seeks the lowest levels in a home. Prompt action with efficient drying and ventilation is what’s called for in such instances. Remedial steps can involve repair or replacement of furnishings, wallboard, or other structural elements. The goal is to fully dry out damaged goods and prevent the growth of mold or mildew on surfaces – easily seen surfaces or hidden-behind-wall surfaces that can offer a damp and dark environment for mold.

But when water in a flooding situation becomes contaminated by coming into contact with sewer water, the stakes are higher. This is often what happens with major flooding of the sort that makes news headlines. Wherever the water flows, bacteria can thrive and cause illness due to the presence of high levels of E. coli and coliform bacteria.

Home flooding requires solutions that are fast and effective. Contaminated or not, unwanted water is not a homeowner’s friend. Contact us to learn how we can help you deal with it.

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Diagnosing dampness in the basement

Saturday, February 5th, 2011

Basements can be particularly susceptible to moisture and mold growth. It’s important to understand why this is in order to avoid the problem. This article offers a pretty good explanation.

Moisture mainly enters a basement mainly by migrating through the concrete foundation. It can appear as condensation on cold walls and floors when the air is particularly humid. Finally, leaking pipes and fixtures can contribute to basement moisture.

If your basement is damp and musty, you need to get it dry before mold starts to grow. We can help you do this as well as fix any mold that has grown. Contact us for assistance.

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