The excessive exposure to mold can be the cause of various serious health issues, as it is extremely harmful to humans.
A mold is a fungus that develops as multicellular filaments known as hyphae and reproduces by forming invisible tiny spores which are omnipresent in the biosphere and the dust in our homes and workplaces.
Molds usually grow in poorly-ventilated rooms, water-damaged buildings, and in bathrooms. They can attach to clothes, carpets, books, paper, furniture, shoes, and even pets.
The main threats are the mycotoxins molds produce, which are toxic chemicals that inhibit the particle clearance in the lungs, prevent protein synthesis, boost sensitivity to bacterial endotoxins, and damage the macrophage systems.
Yet, a mold illness is rarely diagnosed, as conventional doctors believe that mold does not represent a serious health risk.
These are the most common symptoms of a mold illness:
-- Nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain
-- Metallic taste in the mouth
-- Sudden weight gain
-- Frequent headaches
-- Static shocks
-- Chronic fatigue and malaise
-- Sweats (especially night sweats)
-- Numbness and tingling
-- Sensitivity to light, red eyes, and blurred vision
-- Sinus infection, coughing, and shortness of breath
Mold toxicity is a part of the Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS), defined as “an acute and chronic, systemic inflammatory response acquired after an exposure to the interior environment of a water-damaged building with resident toxic organisms, such as fungi, bacteria, actinomycetes, and Mycobacterium as well as an inflammagens such as endotoxins, beta glucans, proteinases, hemolysins, mannans, c-type lectins and possibly spirocyclic drimanes, plus volatile organic compounds“ by Ritchie Shoemaker, an author of eight books, including Surviving Mold: Life in the Era of Dangerous Buildings.
He claims that 24 percent of the people are genetically prone to mold toxicity, which involves 95 percent of mold illnesses.
He also explains that individuals who are genetically susceptible to mold are not able to recognize specific toxins (such as mold) as toxins, and the toxins end up being recirculated in their bodies. This causes chronic inflammation which needs to be immediately medically properly treated.
Experts claim that a person needs to meet the following criteria to be diagnosed with CIRS:
- History, symptoms, and signs consistent with biotoxin exposure.
- A genetic predisposition to illnesses linked to biotoxins, based on HLA susceptible haplotype identification.
- Biomarkers consistent with the neuroimmune, vascular, and endocrine abnormalities related to CIRS.
- Abnormalities documented by Visual Contrast Sensitivity (VCS) testing.
In case you suspect that you have mold at home or at work, we suggest making the following steps:
- Read the book “Surviving Mold” by Dr. Shoemaker, and visit his website www.survivingmold.com to learn more about mold.
- Find a physician certified in the Shoemaker Protocol to work with.
- Hire an environmental professional to inspect your home and get the needed samples of the rooms to conduct the tests for mold, such as the ERMI test.