Black mould, also called toxic or black mould, is a type of fungus that forms its conidia, or reproductive spirals, in black sludge or slime. It can be found in dry soil and rock grains, although the preferred location for the fungus is in damp or moist building materials from water-logged or wet areas. Toxic black mould can be found in homes, offices, and other buildings built over a century ago when drainage systems weren’t as efficient as they are today, making the building more susceptible to mold growth. Mold growth is not the only hazard posed by toxic mold; it is also responsible for a range of health problems, including allergies, fatigue, headaches, dizziness, sinusitis, asthma, depression, and chronic respiratory illnesses.
One of the primary symptoms of toxic mold is the accumulation of a black powdery substance on surfaces that come into contact with it, such as bedding, walls, ceiling, flooring, or storage. This powdery substance is usually odorless or has a mild toxic odor. In addition, it releases spores into the air, which can be inhaled by humans or animals if exposed. However, there are some types of toxic mold that release toxins into the air when the conditions are right. When this happens, people living or working in the area are at risk of developing serious health problems, even if they have only been exposed to the mildest of the toxic forms of black mold.
When the environment is constantly moist, such as during the summer or fall months, the structure is more likely to accumulate damp walls and floors that are prime spots for mould growth. Leaks in the walls and floors will let dirt and grime seep into the walls and the ground, where it is easily ingested and can build up. The environment is also at risk when there are not enough barriers between the floor and ceiling, or a section of the ceiling is leaking. These gaps allow moisture to escape, creating an environment that is perfect for mould to grow.
If there are not enough barriers to prevent moisture from escaping, the ceiling and walls will condense, causing them to swell and become soft, making it more likely for water to enter the building. This condition, which is called sagging and ceiling dew, will result in cracked and crumbling paint, wallpaper, and drywall. Low condensation levels in the building are another sign of poor ventilation. If the moisture is not removed quickly, the moisture will find its way into the air by collecting on window panes, causing interior moisture problems and the development of mould.
To get rid of black mould, you must first get rid of the conditions that make it grow in the first place. It cannot be eliminated, but it can be controlled so that the risk of it starting is greatly reduced. For this to happen, you need to make sure the following things are in good repair:
Examine the inside of walls and ceilings: if they are cracked, look for signs of dampness and condensation. This may mean that they have had a leak recently. If you see discolouration on the interior, the walls are probably damp. It is recommended that you use a special mould killing solution to get rid of any damp areas and to clean and paint the walls immediately to eradicate any mould that does appear.
Clean gutters regularly to prevent the build-up of damp moss on roof tiles and shingles. Remove debris from gutters to allow them to drain properly and to prevent the accumulation of moisture on the roof. If you see any moss growing anywhere around the house, this needs to be removed as soon as possible. The moss can grow into black mould very quickly if it is allowed to grow unchecked.
Remove high levels of indoor dampness: this can cause serious health problems later on in life. Mold grows best where there are high levels of moisture present, such as behind doors, windows and in cupboards. You should also remove high levels of humidity, such as from a shower. If you do have mold growing anywhere inside your home, you should seek advice from a health professional as soon as possible to avoid the build-up of other health problems.