Some of you may encounter this particular mold on blue cheese. Blue mold, as the name implies, is the bluish or greenish fungus belonged to the Penicillium genus–the same type used to make the antibiotic penicillin.
While the mold is considered harmless when deliberately cultivated on edible blue cheese, it is known to produce dangerous toxic compounds when growing on spoiled foods, walls, insulation, etc.
Now, here’s the thing I want you to know. Not all blue mold is toxic. Blue mold on cheese contains Penicillium Roqueforti if not Penicillium Glaucum that do not produce toxins. Meanwhile, other common types of blue mold on foods, walls, or damp carpeting can produce toxins, which, when ingested, can cause several health problems.
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1. Where Does Blue mold Grow?
Blue mold or Penicillium is the culprit behind food spoilage and known to cause health problem when consumed. The presence of damp wood or walls can be the perfect spot for the organism to grow and can trigger an allergic reaction that may cause asthma, respiratory problem, or digestion problem when swallowed.
In general, this type of mold loves the area with high humidity level, dampness, and lack of proper air circulation. The mold is easily recognizable due to its characteristics; velvety texture, blue or green colors surface.
When not treated, blue mold can grow on carpets, damp walls, woods, water-damaged furniture, foods, even clothes and spread quickly from one spot to another in your home.
2. Is there any safe level of blue mold infestation?
There has been a debate over how to set the “correct” amount of mold spores at home for years. While some argue that this particular mold is not dangerous (as it’s consumed in blue cheese) when you spot the mold on the bread in your kitchen, it’s dangerous.
If you suspect mold infestation in your home, try to compare the indoor and outdoor air sample. Consider using mold remedy when the symptoms are getting serious.
3. Suspecting Blue mold on bread
So you’ve bought a loaf of bread, cut half of it for breakfast, and store the other half in the fridge. Sadly, the poor piece is forgotten and stayed in the fridge for a couple of days. That’s when the blue mold may start to build their colony.
The active blue mold on bread is visible through its fuzzy appearance. The mold has grey to light blue color, and when the colony is large enough, it’ll appear more blueish. They love cold temperatures, so any food that stays in the fridge long enough can be infected by this type of Penicillium fungus.
When left overtime, Penicillium can produce mycotoxins that make the molds potentially dangerous and most of the times, lethal. Research from The Environmental Protection Agency has encountered the possibility of links between mycotoxins and certain cancer and other illness.
While the non-toxigenic molds are proved to cause people sickness (rarely lethal), the toxigenic molds are pernicious to human’s life, and even prolonged exposure can take your life.
4. Blue Mold on Wood and Wall Exposure
At a house with poor air circulation, the wooden furniture may get damp and attract blue mold on wood to grow. Homeowners should have enough ventilation so the air and light can minimize the chance of mold exposure. Mostly, the fungus will grow rapidly on furniture that damaged by the water and develops on non-porous surfaces like ceilings, toilets, bathroom wall, and tile floors.
Exposure to blue mold on wall and wood can cause several health problems. The mycotoxin can trigger allergic reactions when inhaled and excessive inhale to blue mold can cause your body to catch toxigenic molds and can deadly.
Cleaning blue mold on wood and wall can be difficult; some even need to replace the surface completely to get rid of the colony. If the blue mold occupies more than 10 sq. ft., consider using professional help to ensure there’s no leftover behind the wall.
5. What is The Health Effects of Blue Mold?
Major health issues caused by blue mold infestation is a terrible respiratory problem when it develops indoors. The spores can travel throughout the room, and inhaled by people since it easily becomes airborne. When ingested, the main health issues are pulmonary inflammation and asthma.
People with a sensitive, allergic reaction or immune disorder should be even more careful with the blue mold exposure because it can lead to serious health complications. In most cases, people have mistaken the blue mold infection as light symptoms that make them left it untreated. The unawareness can cause prolonged exposure that becomes chronic sinusitis or swollen throat that can be life-threatening.
Some people may also have severe allergic reaction including rashes or hives, breathing trouble, and anaphylaxis. This untreated infestation inside your body can damage your internal organs.
If you suspect any blue mold infestation, try to have further examination when you experience the following symptoms:
- Itchy eyes
- Constant sneezing
- Nasal congestion
- Itchy lips
- Running nose
Read also: How Do You Know You Have Mold exposure
6. How to Remove Blue mold from Your House?
Blue mold on bread, food, wall, wood, and other surfaces can spread quickly and rapidly. When the sign is visible, you can act immediately. If not, you can ask for the professional to test and check in the hidden spot for any hidden colony, including inside a wall.
Blue mold on the non-porous surface like tiles, bathtub, metal surface, glass, and floors are easier to clean up using an antimicrobial cleanser like the Foster 40-80. Cleaning up, you’re going to need N-95 respiratory mask, safety goggles, disposable gloves, shoe covers, and disposable hair covers.
On the porous surface, like the blue mold on wood and wall, it takes a little harder effort to eliminate the colony. Most severe infestation cases are impossible to repair that you can rip off the wallpaper or carpet and change to the brand new one. Removing the materials should be done very carefully to prevent the spores from spreading to other areas.
Now, blue mold on the wall seems a piddling business to deal, but you may get serious effects from that. If you think it’s not easy to deal with, I suggest calling the professional mold remedy that includes examination, advice, and removal service. To keep the house clean from the enemy, you need to have proper ventilation, insulation, and aeration. Allowing natural light to travel throughout the room can also help you remove blue mold once and for all.