Can Black Mold Trigger Eczema?
Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is a chronic skin condition that causes dry, itchy, and inflamed patches of skin. Many factors can trigger eczema. Researchers now believe that one of those triggers is black mold.
Black mold, also known as Stachybotrys chartarum, is a type of fungus that can grow in damp environments, such as bathrooms and basements. It produces spores that can be inhaled or enter the body through the skin, leading to a range of health problems.
One 2016 study, published in Allergy and Asthma Proceedings, found that indoor environmental factors, including mold, water damage and humidifier use, increased the risk of eczema.
How Toxic is Black Mold?
Exposure to black mold spores can cause a range of health problems when inhaled or ingested. Exposure to these spores can lead to respiratory problems, such as coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath. Prolonged exposure to black mold can result in even more severe respiratory issues. Black mold has also been linked to neurological symptoms.
One scientific study published in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine investigated the effects of black mold exposure on workers in a water-damaged building. The study found that workers exposed to black mold experienced a range of symptoms including respiratory problems, eye irritation, and skin rash.
The most serious health consequences of exposure to black mold include:
- Respiratory problems. Black mold can cause respiratory problems, such as coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath and asthma attacks. Prolonged exposure to black mold can lead to chronic lung illnesses like bronchitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
- Neurological symptoms. Exposure to black mold can also cause neurological symptoms, such as headaches, dizziness, confusion and memory loss. Some studies have even suggested that exposure to black mold may be linked to neurological disorders like Parkinson's disease.
- Allergic reactions. Black mold spores can trigger allergic reactions, including skin rashes, itchy eyes, and a runny nose. In severe cases, exposure to black mold can cause anaphylaxis, a life-threatening allergic reaction.
- Immune system suppression. Exposure to black mold can suppress the immune system, making individuals more susceptible to infections and other illnesses.
- Skin problems. Exposure to black mold can cause, worsen and prolong symptoms of eczema.
The severity of the health consequences of exposure to black mold can vary depending on the individual's sensitivity, the level and duration of exposure, and other factors.
How Can Black Mold Trigger Eczema Flare-up?
Black mold produces mycotoxins that can activate the immune system and trigger an inflammatory response in susceptible individuals. The immune cells in the skin, such as mast cells and T cells, can release pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines that attract more immune cells to the site of exposure. This immune response can result in increased skin inflammation and aggravation of eczema symptoms.
Moreover, exposure to black mold can lead to an increase in histamine levels in the body, which can also worsen eczema symptoms. Histamine is a molecule that is released during an immune response and plays a role in inflammation and itching. It can bind to histamine receptors in the skin and cause itching, redness and swelling.
In addition to the immune system, black mold exposure can also disrupt the skin barrier function. The skin barrier is composed of a layer of lipids and skin cells that prevent water loss and protect the skin from external irritants. Exposure to black mold can damage this barrier, making the skin more vulnerable to irritants and allergens that can trigger eczema flare-ups.
Finally, some individuals with eczema may have a genetic predisposition to a defective skin barrier and a hyperactive immune system, which can make them more susceptible to environmental triggers such as black mold.
What are the Symptoms of Toxic Mold Skin Rash?
Toxic mold exposure can cause a range of symptoms, including skin rashes. The symptoms of toxic mold skin rash can include:
- Itchy or red skin
- Swelling or inflammation of the affected area
- Dry or scaly patches on the skin
- Blistering or peeling skin
- Pain or discomfort in the affected area
- Burning or tingling sensation on the skin
- Hives or raised bumps on the skin
- Widespread rash covering large areas of the body
How to Treat the Condition
In the first signs of any health condition, call a doctor!
If you suspect that mold may be exacerbating your eczema symptoms, it is important to speak with a healthcare provider and take steps to address any mold issues in your home, such as improving ventilation and preventing further exposure by addressing any sources of dampness.
How to make your home safe?
Here are some steps you can take to prevent black mold growth and keep your home safe:
- Identify problem areas: Look for areas in your home that are prone to moisture, such as bathrooms, kitchens, and basements. If you notice any leaks or water damage, address them promptly.
- Control humidity levels: Mold thrives in humid environments, so it's important to keep the humidity levels in your home below 60%. You can use a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture from the air.
- Increase ventilation: Proper ventilation can help to prevent mold growth by allowing fresh air to circulate and by reducing humidity levels. Open windows when possible and use exhaust fans in bathrooms and kitchens.
- Clean and dry wet areas: If you have any spills or leaks, clean them up immediately and thoroughly dry the affected area. Don't let moisture linger.
- Use mold-resistant products: Consider using mold-resistant materials in areas prone to moisture, such as bathroom tiles and drywall. You can also use mold-resistant paint on walls and ceilings.
- Regularly clean and inspect your home: Keep your home clean and tidy, paying attention to areas that are prone to moisture, such as showers, sinks and toilets. Regularly inspect your home for signs of mold growth and address any issues promptly.
- Call in Mold Act - an expert mold remediation company, to assess and remedy the issue.
Where to Get Mold Removal Help
Mold Act provides state-of-the-art mold remediation services around the Plano, TX area. They help homeowners rid their properties of indoor mold with their comprehensive services, including cleaning, sanitizing, and prevention of future outbreaks.
Their licensed and certified mold remediation team will remove mold completely from your home or business. Mold Act will work systematically to eliminate indoor mold, using advanced professional equipment and supplies. Mold Act will make sure your property is back to normal promptly.
You Don't Have to Live with Mold and Its Many Health Risks
Black mold exposure can have many serious health consequences. If you believe you've been exposed, you should seek medical attention. With respect to eczema, exposure to black mold can worsen symptoms by activating the immune system and triggering an inflammatory response. This in turn increases histamine levels and damages the skin barrier function. Understanding these physiological mechanisms can motivate individuals with eczema to avoid exposure to black mold and then manage their symptoms more effectively.
We don't wait for mold to get worse. We act!
As a homeowner or business owner, mold growth can be a serious concern. We understand the importance of addressing mold growth as soon as possible, which is why we offer fast and reliable services. For the convenience of our customers, we have facilities in numerous states, including:
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If you're looking for mold removal services, call our professional mold remediation service today 877-660-0430!
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