Black Mold vs. Other Common Household Molds

Oct 02 2019

It can be hard to tell the difference between different types of mold. After all, most types that grow in homes are green, black, or dark blue and come with a musty smell. But the one type of mold notorious for making people sick is black mold.

Is black mold really that different from other common household molds? What’s the best way to deal with the different types that grow in your home? Why is it such a big deal? Here’s the difference between other types of growths and what you should know about the risk of black mold growing in your home.

What’s the Difference Between Black Mold and Other Types?

Most molds may look the same, but the impacts of it growing in your home or business vary. The growth known as black mold is a strain called Stachybotry chartarum. It is the most common cause of sick building syndrome and can produce mycotoxins, toxic substances to both humans and animals.

The mycotoxins created by black mold can cause stachybotryotoxicosis, which affects animals more than humans. However, it can still have a negative impact on your health as well. Some common symptoms of regular exposure include:

  • Coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Sore throat
  • Dizziness
  • Headaches

We’ve covered this topic more extensively to help you determine whether or not exposure to mold is making you sick.

What Are Some Other Types of Mold?

Mold spores are everywhere! If you’ve left your food out for too long and saw the gray, green, or blue fuzz, that could be aspergillus. Something you should also know it is that not all types are toxic. While they may aggravate allergies or cause asthma attacks, they might only make you sick if you’re exposed to it regularly. Some other common mold strains you might find in your home include:

  • Alternaria
  • Aspergillus
  • Botrytis
  • Cladosporium
  • Monilia
  • Manoscus
  • Penicillium

These growths can be found in your home in the bathroom, in the kitchen, on foods, and even outside on dead leaves or dirt. If your home smells musty, a simple deep cleaning can help you get rid of the signs of these more common growths.

Where Does Black Mold Grow?

While Stachybotry chartarum is not the most common type of mold growth, it can be found in your home or workplace. Like the other types of mold, it thrives on moisture, so any surface that’s been damaged by water is a potential growing ground. However, black mold is more likely to grow on porous substances, such as:

  • Walls
  • Insulation
  • Ceiling
  • Carpets
  • Paper

Black mold can grow beneath the surface of your walls and ceiling. So, if your walls were damaged by water, you’ll want to dig deep and make sure there was no structural damage done to the wood past the drywall.

If you do smell something musty, there’s a good chance it’s growing in your home, even if you can’t see it. We’ve covered a few other places where mold could be hiding in your home.

How Do I Properly Handle Black Mold?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the best way to handle black mold is the same way you should take care of any growths in your home: remove it. There are a number of ways you can remove it and prevent it from coming back, such as borax, vinegar, or even hydrogen peroxide. However, it’s important to do it safely.
A person wearing gloves and spraying and wiping down some green mold.
Porous surfaces, such as your carpets or drywall, with mold growing in them may need to be removed and replaced instead of simply cleaning up. Mold spores can grow in the small holes of these surfaces, making it almost impossible to remove entirely. A mold removal professional can help you determine what you can keep and what you should throw away.

Do You Suspect You Have a Mold Problem?

Don’t let mold growths make you and your family sick! Learn more about the risks of black mold growing in your home.

If you’re worried about mold growing in your home, the best next steps to take are to call a professional restoration company. Not only can they remove the mold growing in your home, they can also do any necessary reconstruction to remove and rebuild any areas that were irreversibly damaged.

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