How Do You Know If Mold Is Making You Sick?

Are you sick and suspect it might be from mold?

Determining whether exposure to mold is making you sick isn’t always easy.

Each person’s body is affected by mold toxicity in different ways. Some experience constant migraines and headaches, shortness of breath, brain fog, fatigue or even depression.

Since symptoms differ from person to person, they may not be quickly associated with mold exposure. Many people suffering from mold illness struggle to get a proper diagnosis and investigation.

It’s common to think “my house is clean” it can’t be mold! However, mold comes in many forms. In this article, we’ll share what toxic mold is, the signs and symptoms, and how it can be treated.

What Is Mold?

Mold is different types of fungi that grow in moist environments. It’s often found in bathrooms, basements, kitchens, and anywhere moisture resides for long periods of time.  Unfortunately, leaks or floods are not the most common reason for mold growth in a home. Most often mold growth is caused by improper ventilation based on how the house is built and retained moisture behind the walls and floors of a basement.

These fungi spread by invisible “seeds” called spores, which travel through the air. They then take root wherever they find a humid surface. These spores proliferate quickly and can take hold in places with poor ventilation and high humidity in less than 24 hours.

The problem starts when you inhale these spores. They produce toxic substances known as mycotoxins that can produce an immune response in some individuals and actually extremely toxic themselves. This is why some molds are called “toxic molds”.

What Causes Mold Sickness?

The toxins in your system from breathing in mold spores add to the total amount of toxicity in your body. We call this the Total Body Burden. When your burden is high, you start experiencing symptoms – many which are seemingly unrelated.

For most people, toxins get flushed out from the body when eliminating waste.

For some, the toxic load is so high that it’s too much for the body to eliminate them all efficiently. For others, they may have poor detoxification processes or they may even recycle or reabsorb these mycotoxins back, as the body tries to eliminate them. Genetics plays a huge role in this difference from person to person

In short, multiple symptoms happen because, as we say in environmental medicine – genetics points the gun, and then the environment pulls the trigger.

What Are The Symptoms of Mold Sickness?

If your Total Body Burden is high, or you are genetically predisposed to recycling toxins, regular exposure to mold can cause allergy symptoms, such as:

  • Wheezing/shortness of breath
  • Rash
  • Watery eyes
  • Runny nose
  • Itchy eyes
  • Coughing
  • Redness of the eyes
  • Long standing or frequent sinusitis

And, serious pain and neurological symptoms, such as:

  • Headaches and migraines
  • Joint pain
  • Muscle cramping, aches and pains
  • Persistent nerve pain
  • Numbness, tingling or tremors
  • Vertigo/Dizziness
  • Frequent colds and flu
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Poor memory, brain fog, difficulty with focus

In some cases, the spores from mold take root and grow in specific parts of the body, such as the lungs and sinuses. This can cause serious respiratory illnesses and infections.

How Long Do Mold Symptoms Last?

The tricky thing about mold exposure is that it’s different for each person. The amount of time mold exposure symptoms persist depends on:

  • What type of mold they are exposed to,
  • How long the exposure has been,
  • How well their bodies eliminate toxins

Those who process toxins well can see their symptoms disappear as quickly as a few days.

Others who eliminate toxins slowly can experience symptoms for much longer. They could be ill for months or even years after the source of mold is eliminated.

What Are the Signs of Mold in Your House?

Musty smells are a tell-tale sign of mold. Another common indicator is visible signs of water damage.

As mentioned earlier, mold grows fast. Within 24 hours of a water leak, or a flood, mold will begin to take hold. This mold can grow on anything that’s humid – walls, floors, ceilings, furniture, and even wet laundry.

When there is a chance of mold, it’s important to have a professional in to test. Professionals qualified to do environmental investigations can:

  • Check the surfaces of your house for mold
  • Test the air for spores
  • Help you to identify sources of moisture
  • Identify where the mold is growing and help you decontaminate your house
  • Use natural enzymes to kill mold spores

If you don’t get rid of all sources of mold, you risk getting sick from it.

Getting a Diagnosis For Mold Sickness

While symptoms to mold exposure are not uncommon (some studies suggest that mold allergies may affect up to 24% of the population), many health care professionals struggle to pinpoint the cause behind these symptoms.

Often only a few people or one person and not everyone, in a home or workplace experience symptoms. This is frustrating and confusing for the sick person. When their doctors can’t find any reason for the illness, they can start to feel like the sickness is all in their mind.

People suffering from mold exposure can often be misdiagnosed with disorders such as:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Lyme disease

It’s essential to find a health professional that recognizes the symptoms associated with mold and then test for it. Diagnosis is a combination of lifestyle and environmental assessments, and urine and blood tests.

Mold Exposure Treatment

Once the sources of moisture that lead to mold growth are identified, it must be fixed and the mold needs to be eliminated.

This must be done by professionals. Unless an expert permanently removes the mold, it will quickly return.

Finally, the body needs support to eliminate the toxins and reduce the Total Body Burden. Common treatments for mold-related illnesses include:

  • Environmental and dietary overhauls
  • Cleansing specifically for mold
  • Using IV nutrient  therapy and colonics
  • Supporting detoxification by using natural medicines and supplements

Are You Sick But Don’t Know Why?

If you are experiencing mystery symptoms and have not been able to figure out why, you may be suffering from mold sickness.

At Enviromed Clinic, we have years of experience diagnosing and treating allergies and illnesses related to mold exposure.

Book a free exploratory consultation to find out if we can help you.