Mold Related Frequently Asked Questions
You probably have an allergy to mold. 16-20% of the population has a genetic trait that makes them highly susceptible to mold allergies. You may be the only one in your house hold that has the trait.
Yes. Many new houses sit in the rain during construction. To assure that your home is safe, test with mold plates. If you are not sick, mold counts of 0-4 are OK. However, if you do feel sick much of the time with fatigue and sinus symptoms, you will feel best when your indoor mold counts are 0-2 colonies.
My doctor says mold is not an issue in my sinusitis. He says molds have been around forever, and mold is everywhere and there is nothing you can about it. Is he wrong
A 1999 White Paper from the Mayo Clinic established that 93% of chronic sinusitis is in fact mold related. Mold can be effectively removed from your nose and your environment and over 94% of patients get improvement.
We prefer a natural product containing a mixture of citrus seed extracts such as the EC3 products. If you or a family member is mold sensitive it is likely that chemical sensitivities are also present. If you do choose to use a chemical mold remover ensure that the affected person stays out of the environment for at least 24-48 hours after cleaning. Even then there may still be reactions.
When I turn on my car air conditioner there is a musty smell and I sneeze a lot. Could there be mold in my car
Probably. See environmental protocol instruction for information on treating cars. Treat the car and then test it for mold after treatment.
My husband and I and one of our daughters have constant sinus problems. We have looked all over our house and see no mold. Wouldn’t we be able to see it?
Not necessarily. Some of the worse trouble spots have no visible mold. Use mold plate testing and monitor the way you feel in your environment. If you feel bad, chances are there is something in your air that is affecting you. If the air test is OK, then “tap” test the mattress, pillows, sofa, carpet, and pets by tapping the mold plate media side down on the surface to be tested.
My basement has standing water. Everybody in my family is sick. Is there a relationship between the illness and the wet basement? What can I do?
You must find the source of the water intrusion and correct it before doing anything else. It is best to have a professional water damage company (like ServPro or other) do this for you within the first 24 hrs of the damage. Then dry the area thoroughly with a dehumidifier of sufficient size. Everything that got wet should be removed – Sheetrock, paneling, insulation, carpet. This is the key for maintaining good health. Then the affected area should be treated with a non-toxic, natural product to clean mold.
Yes. This is particularly true if you have a cooling system that adds moisture to your air, such as an evaporative or “swamp” cooler.
I had my house checked for mold and the tech told me I had levels in my house that were similar to the levels outside. Can my house still be causing me problems?
Yes. The spores in the outside air are less concentrated and are less likely to cause problems. Few people are affected by outdoor mold counts. However the same counts indoor can make you sick. For example, you can burn a pile of leaves outdoors and everyone is fine, but if you burn the same pile in the living room, everyone dies of smoke inhalation with the same amount of smoke that was OK outside.
We recently had a leaky roof fixed. The man found a lot of black mold in our attic. Will this go away with time considering how hot it gets up there?
No. It will be necessary for a professional to remove mold and everything that got wet and treat to prevent further problems. Mold will continue to be present and every time you bring something stored in your attic into your home you are reintroducing mold spores. Think Christmas, Halloween and suitcases…
Someone told me that the carpet in my house could grow mold. Is this so? If so what can I do to clean it?
Yes. Carpets harbor mold. Cleaning mold from carpets is nearly impossible. It is like vacuuming your lawn. Mold and dirt gets trapped in the deep fibers of the carpet and cannot be effectively controlled long term. So in the areas where you spend most time, the floor cover should be anything but carpet. Prefinished solid wood, not laminate (due to chemicals), or tile, or stone.
It is difficult. There are many mold inspectors, but few are trained in human health and really know the levels that are toxic to sensitive people. Of course, if the levels are extremely high, they know the air is toxic. However many cases of chronic sinusitis are in environments that are not toxic to people who are not allergic to mold, but are very toxic to those who are allergic to mold. Some industrial hygienists can give good advice and inspections and recommend someone to remediate the home. Moisture intrusion must be found and stopped and all items that were contaminated must be removed.
Either they did not fix the source of the moisture or they used toxic chemicals or both. Test the house and “tap” test the contents.
Mold / Sinus Symptoms & Diagnosis
I have been tested for mold allergies and my doctor has said that I do not have one. Could he/she be wrong?
There are two types of mold allergy tests: Immediate and Delayed. The Immediate Test is far and away the most common test used by Allergy/ENT doctors.
The Immediate Test (IgE)is based on a reaction to a skin test or IgE antibody blood test for immediate reactions to mold. It is the test that most insurance companies will cover.
The Delayed Test (IgG) requires a blood sample to be drawn and tested which is not frequently done for cost reasons.
FACTOID: People with Chronic Sinusitis (more than 90%!) show a positive mold allergen result when using the Delayed Test (IgG) blood test. However, only 30% of the same population will show a positive result when using the Immediate Test (IgE).
I have constant sinus problems. I also have joint pain and problems with my memory. Could these be caused by mold exposure?
Yes, many people notice an improvement in these conditions when they clear mold from their body and their environment.
I keep getting sinus infections. They are cleared up with antibiotics, but come back within a month. What can I do?
Check your environment for mold. Remember mold (antigen) removal from your body and your environment is the an effective way to control sinusitis. The constant re-exposure will continue to make you ill. Antibiotics are only temporary masking agents not a cure for chronic sinusitis.
You may likely have an environmental problem. Your home, work space, and car should be checked for mold. Recurrent sinusitis after multiple antibiotics, and or steroids and surgeries is most frequently due to failure to clear mold from BOTH the patient and their environment.
My daughter has been sick since she moved into a mobile home. When she visits me she gets better. What should she do?
The daughter should stay out of mobile home until it has been treated and declared mold free. This goes for anyone who suspects they are living/working in a mold contaminated environment. You can easily determine if there is mold by using simple mold screening plates. *Note – they do take 5 days to grow after exposure.
No. Mayo Clinic researchers determined in 1999 that 93% of all chronic sinusitis is caused by an immune reaction to fungus (Mold). In patients who have fungal allergies, mold causes white blood cells to attack the fungus in the sinus lining. In doing so the white blood cells burst, killing the fungus, but causing a pit in the sinus lining. The pits trap mucous, the mucous collects bacteria that cause an infection. When the infection is treated with antibiotics, the symptoms improve, but since the patient is still breathing mold in the air, when the antibiotics are stopped, the infection recurs over an over. The cause of the infection must be addressed. The antigen (mold) that causes sinusitis must be removed both from the patient and from the patient’s environmental air for lasting wellness.
Polyps are tissue growths much like an oyster in consistency and the size of a grape. They are caused by the inflammatory reaction of the tissues to mold. So when the mold is treated and the air is clear of mold, the polyps have a better chance of improvement. However, if they become obstructive, they can cause infection and the infection causes more polyps. Surgery is necessary to relieve the obstruction in these cases.
When I am at home and work I seem to be in a “fog”. When I go to the beach, this goes away. Is this just my imagination?
No. In this case, the home is an environment that is likely to have high mold counts while the beach has a zero mold count on the ocean. Mold and Yeast (Candida) are known to cause cognitive problems in people with delayed fungal allergies.
Even after the source of the mold has been removed spores can still be present in the home’s contents, such as clothing, mattresses, pillows, sofas, or pets. All pets have mold. Follow the pet treatment protocol on our web page and do not put the pet in the bed room. Also pine straw, mulch, bark, old furniture, cardboard, and old papers are known to cause mold illness. If mold is cleared from your body and your environment and you still have fatigue it is possible that you may have pituitary damage, which can cause low levels of all the hormones such as estrogen, testosterone, thyroid, parathyroid, cortisol, and most importantly Growth Hormone, which is responsible for cell replacement and growth and without which health, vitality, and energy is impossible.
The researchers distinguish chronic sinusitis — sinusitis that lasts three months or longer — from acute sinusitis, which lasts a month or less. They say that the cause of the acute condition is usually a bacterial infection. Antibiotics and over-the-counter decongestants are widely used to treat chronic sinusitis. In most cases, antibiotics are not effective for chronic sinusitis because they target bacteria, not fungi. The over-the-counter drugs may offer some relief of symptoms, but they have no effect on the inflammation. “Medications haven’t worked for chronic sinusitis because we didn’t know what the cause of the problem was,” says Dr. Jens Ponikau. “Finally we are on the trail of a treatment that may actually work.” Thousands of varieties of single-cell fungi (molds and yeasts) are found everywhere in the world. Fungal spores (the reproductive part of the organism) become airborne like pollen. Some people develop allergies to fungi. The evidence from the Mayo study suggests that many people also develop a different kind of immune system response.
Mold & Sinus Solutions / Products
Irrigation removes mucus and congestion and the mold (mold is the antigen or allergen) which is causing your problem. Antigen (mold) removal is the single most effective treatment for sinusitis. You should rinse twice a day simply because you are constantly breathing in airborne spores. We also recommend using CitriDrops since it has strong antifungal properties, far more so than plain saline.
Thymic supplements can boost your immune system by aiding in producing thymic protein A, which helps your body ward off infections. Our bodies stop producing this protein around age 20 and it is essential.
CitriDrops is an all-natural antifungal botanical. When used in facial steamer, added to normal saline for irrigation, as a specially formulated nose spray, or taken orally for GI issues related to your problem, it will reduce the Candida in your body.