Did you know there are a hundred types of molds in the United States, and they may vary in color? If you own a home, you are probably familiar with mold sickness brought by black mold, but did you know that other mold, such as green mold, can cause illness, too? But can green mold kill you?
However, fungi can be harmful to humans regardless of color, whether black, yellow, blue, pink, or green. Green molds, especially, are one of the most common fungi inside the house. Hence, it would be best if you were extra vigilant of their growth in your home.
Are you familiar with green mold? Do you know how to get rid of it? Here’s what you should know about green mold.
What is Green Mold?
Green mold is the collective term for the fungi that grow in homes in the shade of green. They appear fuzzy, soft, and powdery. You may have seen it on food, bread, and other damp areas.
Although most species of mold can grow in hues of green, the most common are Aspergillus, Cladosporium, and Penicillium.
Aspergillus is a green mold usually found on spoiled food like bread. It can also grow in moisture-rich areas in the house, like the bathroom and basements.
This type of mold is olive green and can develop on plants. You can also find it on various surfaces at home, such as carpets, cabinets, and walls.
Penicillium is famous for its antibacterial properties. It is bluish-green or green-blue algae. However, it can be toxic to people because they emit mycotoxins. This fungus grows on wet items in the home and colder environments.
Can Green Mold Kill You If Eaten?
Nothing is more frustrating than sinking your teeth into your favorite bread and getting a mouthful of fuzzy, green mold. Even the thought of green mold on bread may cause you to lose your appetite.
But what happens if you swallow green mold? Can green mold kill you?
The good news, though, is there is a high chance that nothing will happen. You may get gastrointestinal upset, but green mold will be less likely to kill you.
According to an expert, you would have to have an underdeveloped immune system and eat tons of mold to get sick. But it doesn’t mean that it can kill you, either.
How Much Green Mold Can Kill You?
Everyone reacts to green mold differently. Your sensitivity to this fungus will influence how quickly it can harm you.
If you’re not allergic or sensitive to green mold, you would be safe after ingesting or exposure. It will take large amounts of mold to make you sick, and as mentioned earlier, that doesn’t mean it will kill you.
However, for people who are allergic and sensitive to mold, a small amount can trigger their allergic symptoms. Some symptoms include itching the nose, sneezing, congestion, vomiting, diarrhea, chest tightness, and shortness of breath.
You should be able to treat these symptoms instantly. However, if a person has a severe allergic reaction, exposure to even the slightest amount of mold may cause death.
If you know you have sensitivities to green mold, stay away from it.
Can Breathing in Green Mold Kill You?
While it’s common to be sick once you breathe in mold, it is unlikely it kills you. At least, for some people, living around green mold will not necessarily harm them.
But for others, green mold can kill you. This unfortunate event can happen to someone with a weakened immune system, existing autoimmune disease, and a strong allergic reaction.
Can Green Mold Make You Sick?
Generally, green mold will not make you sick, especially if you have a robust immune system. But if you have mold allergy, your immune system will react when you breathe in green mold spores.
However, even if you’re not allergic to mold, ensure you don’t allow it to touch your skin. Wear protective gloves if you want to remove it on your own.
How to Remove Green Mold In the House?
Some common household products can treat small mold colonies you have at home, like baking soda, vinegar, and hydrogen peroxide. Here are some items you can use to resolve your mold problems at home:
Mix one part water and one part baking soda in a spray bottle. Use the solution to spray the affected area. Allow it to sit for 10 minutes. Use a wet sponge to clean away the mold.
Mix vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Use the solution on the surfaces with mold colonies. Leave the water and vinegar solution for an hour. Wipe the green mold with a wet sponge.
A mixture of 3 parts hydrogen peroxide and 1 part water can also remove small growths of green mold. Apply the mixture to the mold infestation and let them sit for 10 minutes. Wipe away the green mold with a clean cloth.
Do You Need a Cleaning Professional to Remove Green Mold?
As mentioned earlier, green mold is toxic and can be dangerous to people who are allergic to it. These people should not try to remove it.
For those who are not allergic, removing it yourself is an option. If you want to remove green mold on your own, ensure the mold grown is less than 10 square feet. According to the EPA, if a moldy area is less than 10 feet, anyone can tackle the mold problem themselves.
Anything more than 10 square feet can be dangerous to remove by anyone. You may need a mold removal professional to resolve mold infestation in the house.
How Can You Prevent Green Mold Growth?
Moisture and leaks are the serial perpetrators of mold growth. Hence, the most effective prevention method for green mold growth is to prevent moisture buildup and leaks.
Here are easy ways to prevent green mold growth.
Clean the House Regularly
Clean the areas in the house where green mold usually accumulates. Also, clean up condensation on pipes, bathroom tiles, windows, and other moist areas.
Use a Dehumidifier or Air Conditioning
Use a dehumidifier or AC in areas prone to high humidity and moisture buildup. Dehumidifiers are great for high humidity in the basement of your house.
Use a Range Hood at Home While Cooking
Mold only needs a little moisture to grow. Even the fumes from cooking can cause mold growth. Thus, use a range hood when cooking food in your house.
Again, whether you have eaten, touched, or exposed yourself to mold, the odds are high that it will not kill you. You would need a large amount of mold to make you sick.
Still, if you know you have eaten some mold from your food and develop vomiting and nausea, consult your doctor immediately.
On the other hand, those with a fragile immune system and severe mold allergy should avoid mold exposure.
So, if you spot green mold in your home, remove it. However, if the infestation is too large, say more than 10 square feet, call a professional to help eliminate these species.