Have You Been Told About Mold
An often overlooked cause of chronic illness is mold. Almost all of us have been exposed, but if your immune system is weakened while you’ve had repeated exposure to toxic mold spores, the mycotoxins can cause disease symptoms in your body. A mycotoxin (from the Greek μύκης mykes, "fungus" and τοξικόν toxikon, "poison") is a toxic secondary metabolite produced by organisms of the fungus kingdom and is capable of causing disease and death in both humans and other animals.
A mold exposure can present itself in a variety of ways. The following symptoms can be an indication of a mold reaction:
- -Multiple food allergies
- -Chemical sensitivity (especially to fragrances)
- -İnflammation and joint soreness
- -Stuffy nose and itching eyes
- -Chronic upper respiratory and sinus infections
- -Yeast infections (i.e. candida thrush, jock itch, vaginal infection)
- -Chronic digestive problems (bloating, gas, constipation)
- -Brain fog
- -Behavior changes (ADHD type symptoms, depression, aggression, negativity)
Candida yeast, a normal part of your microbiome, is opportunistic and can overgrow in your body when your internal terrain has been damaged by mold or antibiotics (many of which are actually mycotoxins from mold such as penicillan).In fact, if your child is allergic to an antibiotic or certain foods that contain mold like cheese or peanuts, that is also a sign that they are sick from mold.Likewise, the opportunistic Candida albicans overgrowth can be seen as white coating on the tongue and/or some of the symptoms listed above coupled with increased sugar cravings.If you have taken your child to the doctor or doctors multiple times for chronic upper-respiratory and sinus issues (asthma, wheezing, congestion, sinus infection) or any of the above symptoms, but are not getting better after treatment, it’s time to asess your environment to see if you have toxic mold in your house.
Mold spores are everywhere in the indoor and outdoor environment and they grow and reproduce in moist dark conditions. If there has been water leakage (e.g. from roofs, pipes, openings in exterior walls or windows, plant pots) or flooding in the house and mold spores are present they will begin to grow. It is critically important to fix leaks promptly and thoroughly dry out all building materials that got wet because many building materials provide nutrients that encourage mold growth.Materials have to be wet for at least 48 hours to begin growing mold.Ceiling tiles, wood and wood products, and paper products are particularly conducive for the growth of some molds.Other materials such as dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation materials, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery, commonly support mold growth. Sometimes mold can go undetected for a long time because it is hidden inside a wall.
Not all molds make mycotoxins, but if you have a suspicion, you should test.Remediation companies can detect mold by collecting dust and air samples to determine if your house is infected with a variety of mold that produces toxins. Common places to find mold are under sinks, refrigerator ice makers, baseboards in a basement, an overflow drain from the laundry, bathrooms and window sills.If you find the source of mold wipes off a surface after a thorough scrubbing with bleach or borax (be sure to where a mask when cleaning the area) and doesn’t come back, then your safe.But if it returns, you need to replace all the damaged building material in that contaminated section.The first step in mold remediation is to find the source of moisture that caused the damage.Ice damning, leaking pipe or appliances, water seeping from outside at the foundation, or condensation of moisture due to poor insulation in old or poorly constructed homes are common sources.Next, all damaged building material and any upholstered furniture or household goods located near it that can’t be thoroughly washed in hot water need to be removed and discarded because they will contain spores.Special care needs to be taken during the repair or remodel to prevent mold spores from spreading to other areas of the house.Walls and floors should be washed and a deep house cleaning completed.Since mold needs moisture to grow, you can prevent it’s proliferation by controlling the moisture level in your house.A dehumidifier in the basement or other problem area is a useful tool. Lastly, if the mold problem can’t be completely addressed quickly because of costs or other factors, the essential oils of cinnamon, frankincense, tea tree, lemon, clove, rosemary can be diffused into the air to kill mold spores which along with good housekeeping can at least reduce the level of air-borne toxins in your living environment.
Hopefully, if you have completed remediation and cleansed your house of mold, your child’s health will begin to improve. If symptoms persist, there are some useful diagnostic tests you can ask your physician about to determine if the mold mycotoxins are still causing a problem. GI Map stool testing and Organic Acids Tests look for markers that can indicate mold and yeast overgrowth in the body. In the book “The Dirt Cure” by Dr. Maya Shetreat-Klein, she gives advice on how to gently support children’s detoxification pathways to allow for safe internal cleansing so they can recover from a toxic mold exposure.She recommends plenty of outdoor fresh air exercise (trampoline is optimal for cellular detoxification) and/or very short supervised sauna sessions to help them to sweat (be sure to have them drink extra water). She also suggests a rotation of regular Epsom salt or baking soda baths which helps their bodies eliminate toxins through the skin, thereby lessening the burden on their internal organs.Binder supplements like activated carbon, diotomaceous earth or edible clay can be taken in small amounts between meals to bind with mycotoxins in the digestive tract so they are more easily expelled in their stool.She also suggests some food based nutrients that optimize mitocondrial function like fish oil, liver, green drinks, CoQ10, ALA, L-Carnite and vitamin B12.Another great resource for anyone dealing with toxic mold is the book Nature’s Mold Rx by Edward R Close, PhD, and Jacquelyn A Close.Mold in not something to ignore as it can have a profound negative effect on your family’s health.But if you have the right information and take the appropriate steps, you can recover and be well again.