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What Are Mycotoxins?

Mycotoxins are metabolites produced by numerous types of mold. Since metabolites are toxic to our cells, they are essentially what makes mold harmful to humans. Without the aid of a microscope, mycotoxins are invisible to the eye, making them silent killers to those who are vulnerable and unaware of their presence.

Negative Health Effects
Mold emits noxious mycotoxins into the air in the form of spores, which can enter the body through the mouth, nose, eyes, and the pores of the skin. When they enter our system in large amounts, they can greatly affect our health. Exposure to high concentrations causes mycotoxin poisoning. Those who either work or live in an environment where mold (especially toxic black mold) is present are at the highest risk of having their health compromised by mycotoxins. Below is a list of some of the negative health effects that can be brought on by heavy exposure to harmful metabolites:

  • MycotoxinsRespiratory conditions (e.g. difficulty breathing, bleeding from the lungs, burning sensation in the throat and lungs)
  • Mental and neurological problems (e.g. dizziness, confusion, hallucinations, depression, anxiety, difficulty concentrating)
  • Vision impairments
  • Dermatological problems (e.g. rashes, crawling skin sensation, blisters, jaundice)
  • Decreased immune function
  • Circulatory problems 
  • Digestive issues (e.g. nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach bleeding)
  • Infertility
  • Hair loss and brittle nails
  • Frequent urination
  • Fatigue and difficulty sleeping
  • Death

Moreover, some doctors have theorized that mycotoxin exposure and poisoning may be linked to autism and autism spectrum disorders.

Allergy blood tests do not always reveal the presence of mycotoxins in the system, so mycotoxin poisoning should not be completely ruled out if the results of allergy tests are negative. When symptoms persist, further medical attention should be sought.

Preventative Measures
To reduce the risk of mycotoxin poisoning, it is important to be on the lookout for mold growth in the home, workplace, and other locations where a substantial amount of time is spent.  Mold is especially fond of humidity, so damp areas, such as under the kitchen sink, around the bathtub and shower stall, and in basement spaces, are the ideal spots for the development of mold. 

To prevent mold growth, keep the humidity in your home at the recommended level. If some rooms are especially damp, you may want to consider investing in a home dehumidifier to reduce the risk of mold settling in.

Because mold is not always obvious, as it often develops beneath surfaces, it can be difficult to detect its existence.  Should you suspect mold growth in your environment, do not hesitate to take action. Hire a professional in order to either negate or validate your suspicions, and if the presence of mold is confirmed, it must be removed immediately, particularly if it is toxic black mold, one of the most dangerous types .

Mold does not only cause damage to your health, but also to the surface areas of your home such as walls, ceilings and cabinets; it also permeates the room with an unpleasant, musty smell . Its negative effects on your well-being can be permanent and even life-threatening; so make sure that your health and the health of your loved ones is not jeopardized by mycotoxins.

 

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