In Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (one of my favorite video games), among the main antagonists are the “Molded”, lumbering zombie-esque monsters that appear to spawn out of areas of the environment covered with Mold. They are all remnants of humans that have been infected by the Mold, in which their bodies have been mostly consumed by the bacteria.
These creatures are quite scary and horrible to look at, the creators of Resident Evil 7 used photographs of buildings infected with a lot of mold as inspiration to design them and boy they were successful.
Mold is not really like those monsters that devour people, but when it is out of control it can be very harmful to health, and certain types of mold are highly toxic and cause lung and allergic problems.
Here are some real facts about Mold:
- In spite of the dry climate along the South Valley – Santa Fe, New Mexico corridor, 27% of newer and old homes in New Mexico still have mold growth. It takes no more than persistent moisture and dark areas with poor ventilation. Molds are fungi that occur in the natural environment. Their role in nature is to cause the decay of dead plant and animal matter. Molds create tiny spores to reproduce, just like some plants produce seeds. These microscopic spores travel through the air and when they land on a damp spot they may begin to grow and feed on organic matter to survive. Although mold growth outdoors is a good and necessary process, mold growth indoors is a potential for major problems and should be avoided.
- Avoiding mold spores indoors is impossible because they are always in the air and get indoors through open doorways, windows, vents, and heating and air conditioning systems. Mold spores can also attach themselves to clothing, shoes, bags, and pets and be carried indoors. Everyone is exposed to some amount of mold every day. Not everyone is mold sensitive. Continual exposure to active mold spores in the home, workplace or outdoors can, over time, cause or worsen health effects. The effects can be anything from severe illness, exacerbated asthma or chronic sinus infections to the more common feeling of being tired or more susceptible than others to getting sick. Conditions conducive to mold and other pathogens are a particular challenge for older adults in need of home health and younger children with compromised immune systems.
- The New Mexico Health Department recommends New Mexicans to be proactive about preventing mold from growing in their homes. If you don’t immediately dry out your home and clean your belongings, you could be setting yourself up for problems down the road. If you see a discoloration or growth on surfaces in your bathroom, water heater closet, on your window sills, under your kitchen sink, on your baseboards or under rugs and carpeting, it may be mold. Clean-up of small areas of mold can be safely done by an individual home owner, who takes the proper precautions. It is important to take precautions to limit your exposure to mold and mold spores. (https://www.nmhealth.org/about/erd/eheb/mp)
The following are basic steps recommended by the EPA:
- Scrub mold off hard surfaces with detergent and water, and dry completely.
- Fix plumbing leaks and other water problems as soon as possible. Dry all items completely.
- Absorbent or porous materials, such as ceiling tiles and carpet, may have to be thrown away if they become moldy. Mold can grow on or fill in the empty spaces and crevices of porous materials, so the mold may be difficult or impossible to remove completely.
- Avoid exposing yourself or others to mold.
- Do not paint or caulk moldy surfaces. Clean up the mold and dry the surfaces before painting. Paint applied over moldy surfaces is likely to peel.
To get your home completely free of mold call a certified remediation company We are MoldBusters New Mexico, and there is no job we can’t do.