Many people self-diagnose themselves with hay fever when they are experiencing itchy eyes, nose and throat, post nasal drip, watery eyes, and sneezing. But these symptoms are the same for mold allergies. If your hay fever doesn't get better with treatment, you may want to investigate whether or not you are allergic to mold and how to minimize mold exposure in your living or working environment. If you determine you need help detecting mold levels or with mold removal, San Diego-based Clean Earth Restorations can help.
Here is a synopsis based on the Mayo Clinic's article about mold allergies which may be helpful to you.
What are the symptoms of mold allergies?
Mold allergy symptoms can vary from person to person, and can be mild to severe. The symptoms include sneezing, watery eyes, itchy eyes, nose, and throat, and a runny or stuffy nose. One might notice the symptoms more when the weather is damp.
Are mold allergies related to asthma?
Mold allergies have been known to trigger asthma.
Who is most likely to suffer from mold allergies?
These factors make mold allergies stronger or more likely:
- family history of allergies
- working in an industry that exposes you regularly to mold (baking, wine/beer-making, cheese shop, home or business cleaning, gardening or greenhouse work)
- living in an environment that regularly has higher than 60% humidity
- living/working in a building that has experience flood damage (and may be harboring unseen mold)
- living in a house with poor ventilation
How can I know for sure if I'm allergic to mold?
A doctor can prescribe one of two tests. A skin prick test involves applying a suspected allergen to your skin with a tiny needle prick. Any reaction (hive or otherwise) will signify an allergic reaction to that substance. A blood test done in a lab will measure your body's immune response to a specific mold.
What should I do if I'm allergic to mold?
There are a number of medications and treatments your doctor can prescribe to alleviate the symptoms of mold allergies. However, the best treatment is to avoid exposure to mold as much as possible. This includes:
- checking your home for mold levels: removing any sources of moisture and subsequent mold colonies
- sleeping with closed windows (Mold spores are airborne and most concentrated when air is cool and damp. Keeping windows closed will prevent outdoor spores from entering.)
- wearing a dust mask when doing gardening chores such as working with compost, raking leaves, or mowing the lawn.
Contact Clean Earth Restorations for all your questions or concerns about mold, as well as free estimates on mold remediation and flood restoration contracting: