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How Do You Get Tested For Mold Allergies

Is There A Test To Determine If I Have Been Exposed To Mold

About Allergy Testing – Food, Pollen and Pet Allergy Skin Tests

Some physicians have recommended testing for mold-specific antibodies. Thepresence of antibodies only indicates that you have been exposed to a substanceat some time. It does not tell you when you were exposed, where the exposuretook place, or how much of the mold you were exposed to. Having a positive testfor mold-specific antibodies alone is generally considered insufficient toprove that health effects reported by individuals in moisture-damaged buildingsare caused by exposure to mold.

How Do You Treat Mold Toxicity Symptoms

Right now, youll see a lot of experts recommending handfuls of supplements and strict diets but the reality is, we just dont know for sure if these are the right treatment approach, says McElroy. Instead, she recommends the steps below. You might be surprised to see that killing the mold is only one out of five. Thats no coincidence! As McElroy explains, I often dont focus on killing mold since most symptoms are due to the immune response, not the mold itself. Instead, she starts with simple lifestyle steps and utilizes non-pill practices to achieve a state of better immune health, including:

How To Diagnose A Mold Allergy

To test for a mold allergy, the doctor will take a comprehensive medical history and ask you about your symptoms and when they occur. Mold allergy tests include:

  • Skin prick tests Droplets of mold allergens are placed on the skin surface with tiny punctures. Raised bumps strongly indicate an allergy to that substance.
  • Blood tests Chemical testing detects Immunoglobulin E antibodies circulating in your blood that are directed at specific allergens. Lab results may take days. A blood sample is sent to a medical laboratory, where it can be tested for evidence of sensitivity to specific types of mold.

The doctor will put all the evidence together test results, your personal and family health history, home and work environments, activities that might expose you to allergens, a physical exam of your eyes, ears, nose and lungs before reaching a diagnosis.

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How Do You Know If Black Mold Is Affecting You

The most common black mold symptoms and health effects are associated with a respiratory response. Chronic coughing and sneezing, irritation to the eyes, mucus membranes of the nose and throat, rashes, chronic fatigue and persistent headaches can all be symptomatic of black mold exposure or black mold poisoning.

Common Mold Allergy Symptoms Include:

Can You Get Tested for Mold Allergies?
  • Sneezing
  • Stuffy or runny nose
  • Itchy nose, mouth and/or lips

Traditional allergy tests utilize the Skin Prick method to determine whether an allergic reaction will occur by inserting possible triggers into your skin using a needle prick. If you are allergic to the substance, you are forced to suffer through your body’s reaction to the allergen. HealthLabs.com offers an easier, virtually pain-free blood test to determine the allergen status of substances without the irritation of traditional skin prick tests.

  • No painful skin pricks
  • No fasting necessary
  • Accurate results within 1 to 2 days

Our quick blood test allows us to use your blood sample to test for allergic reactions externally, rather than causing unnecessary and painful reactions by introducing potential allergens to your system. Tests are administered in approximately 10 minutes or less at any of our 4,500+ nationwide locations. No appointments, no paperwork and no waiting are all part of what makes HealthLabs.com the best option for pain-free and hassle-free allergy testing.

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Other Diagnoses That Influence Labs & Symptoms

In conclusion, mold illness can be frustratingly difficult to diagnose, but is refreshingly responsive to treatment, especially when a patient is willing to do what it takes to remove themselves from the exposure. Unfortunately, finding a doctor or medical practitioner who knows about mold and who will look to a patients environment for the cause of their symptoms is still the exception, rather than the rule. Wanting to help you close that gap is the main impetus for me writing this article today. If nothing else, you can print out this list of tests and take it to your primary care physician and ask that they run the labs necessary to begin compiling information from which to make a diagnosis. The abovementioned labs and proper testing of your environment can lead you to some pretty conclusive evidence that mold is or is not the cause of your symptoms. Should you wish to work with me directly, I currently offer phone consults. You can contact me through my site www.thebodynexus.com and by going to the Medical Consults section on the Services page.

Questions? Comments? Responses to this article or suggestions for future topics? Write to us below or email us at .

Why Are Mold Issues Difficult To Diagnose

Conventional medicine recognizes that mold can cause allergies but does not recognize that mycotoxins emitted by some species of indoor mold can cause a problem, says McElroy. This means that doctors unfamiliar with mold and mold treatment may miss one of the main types of mold reactionsthe chemical and inflammatory reaction. This is for a few reasons:

  • There is no gold standard in testing for mold
  • There is no standardized treatment protocol or drug for mold toxicity
  • There are very limited human-based studies looking at the connection between mycotoxins and human health
  • The presentation of mold issues is very different among patients
  • Not everyone exposed to mold mycotoxins will have a reaction to them

Its no wonder mold illness can be hard to diagnose. Fortunately, holistic medicine providers consider environmental factors that affect health when evaluating patients and may have additional advanced training in treating mold toxicity.

According to McElroy, one of the biggest challenges with mold is that mycotoxins can cause only some people to launch an inflammatory response. This unpredictable response can go on for years after a long-term exposure in a susceptible individual, she explains.

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When To Inspect For Mold

One good thing about mold- if you can see it, you have mold in your house. Seeing mold in the cracks and corners of your walls definitely means it is growing and spreading more spores. Keep in mind that mold may also grow in places you cannot see, such as in your ducts or between your walls. It may also form colonies so tiny they escape the eye. A few situations should make you look for any mold problems in your house.

  • Water damage. If your basement flooded, roof leaked, or a broken pipe sprayed water all over the kitchen, you need to inspect for mold. Any place that got wet and was not quickly dried could become contaminated by mold.
  • Purchasing a new home. There is no way to know what kind of water damage may have happened in the house you are planning to buy. The only way to find out if mold is present is to do a mold inspection.
  • After a house has been unoccupied. If a house has been closed up and unoccupied for months or years, humidity could have built up inside and caused mold to grow. This is especially a problem in warmer areas with high humidity.
  • After mold remediation. If you have gone through the often expensive and difficult steps to deal with a mold problem, regular mold inspections are a good idea to make sure you really got rid of it all.
  • You see some mold. If you notice some green, blue, black or white stuff growing in your house, do a mold inspection to make sure you find it all. It might not be restricted to one location.

Symptoms Of Black Mold Exposure

Do You Have Mold In Your Body? The 3 Tests You Need To Find Out! with Evan H. Hirsch, MD

Many types of indoor mold, not just black mold, can cause symptoms if you are sensitive to them or are exposed to them for a prolonged period of time. Symptoms of mold exposure include:

Symptoms of mold exposure may be worse in people who are most at risk, including:

  • People with an allergy to mold
  • People with a weakened immune system, who may develop infections
  • Older people

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How To Remove Mold

  • Wear old clothes and shoes that you can launder or throw away after the cleanup work.
  • Wear special N-95 or P-100 respirators, in addition to goggles and gloves.
  • Set an old box fan or a cheap new one in a window to ventilate the room while working. Throw it out when you’re done cleaning, because the spores are almost impossible to clean off. Tape plywood or cardboard around the window openings so the spores can’t blow back in.
  • Wrap and tape moldy carpeting in 6-mil plastic, and double-bag mold-infested debris in garbage bags for disposal.
  • To control airborne spores, moisten moldy areas with a garden sprayer while you work.
  • Turn off your furnace and air conditioner and cover ducts and doors to contain spores.
  • Keep your wet/dry vacuum outside when you vacuum.

Think You’re Allergic To Mold Here’s What You Should Know

All allergies are frustrating, but mold allergies really take things to a new level.

Why? Well, because mold thrives in a bunch of different conditions , and youll never wipe it out entirely.

Does that mean you need to accept your constant sniffling, sneezing, and itching as a way of life? Not exactly. Lets talk about how to tell if you have a mold allergyand more importantly, what you can do about it.

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I Tested Positive For Mycotoxins Now What

Finding out that theres mold in your home or body can definitely be scaryand embarrassing, too. Fortunately, once you know that youre dealing with toxic mold exposure, you can take action:

If theres mycotoxins in your homeYoull need to consult with a professional mold remediation firm about eliminating the problem. Sometimes, when a mold issue is as simple as a small patch of gunk on a shower wall or a basement carpet that smells like dirt, its possible to clean the mess up on your own. However, large infestationsor infestations of highly dangerous molds, like Stachybotrys chartarum should only be handled by experts.

If theres mycotoxins in your bodyYou should see a physician right away. Explain your symptoms and bring a copy of your test results. Your doctor may want to give you another test to verify that yes, mycotoxins really are the source of your health issues.

Once you receive an official diagnosis, the doctor will be able to come up with an appropriate treatment plan. Meanwhile, it would be wise to have your home inspected for mold, as well, to stop the toxins at their source.

Advantages Of Ige Mold Allergy Test

Symptoms of Mold Exposure

IgE Mast Cell Inflammatory Mediators

  • Identify IgE reactivity level to specific mold species.

  • Connect immune responses to specific molds.

  • Suggest history of mold exposure.

  • Current higher reactivity or potential past lower reactivity.

  • Helpful for individuals with allergies, asthma and other respiratory conditions that may be due to histamine release and other inflammatory mediators resulting from IgE reactivity or other immune reactions.

  • Link IgE results with mold allergy symptoms, which include cough and postnasal drip, watery eyes, itchy eyes, nose, throat, runny or stuffy nose, or dry, scaly skin. In addition, possibly assist in identifying abnormal reactions to mold, including mold-induced asthma, allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis, allergic fungal sinusitis, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, and dampness and mold hypersensitivity syndrome .

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    How Do Molds Get In The Indoor Environment And How Do They Grow

    Mold is found both indoors and outdoors. Mold can enter your home through open doorways, windows, vents, and heating and air conditioning systems. Mold in the air outside can also attach itself to clothing, shoes, and pets can and be carried indoors. When mold spores drop on places where there is excessive moisture, such as where leakage may have occurred in roofs, pipes, walls, plant pots, or where there has been flooding, they will grow. Many building materials provide suitable nutrients that encourage mold to grow. Wet cellulose materials, including paper and paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, wood, and wood products, are particularly conducive for the growth of some molds. Other materials such as dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation materials, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery, commonly support mold growth.

    Black Mold Exposure Mold Poisoning:

    These are molds that are green or black in appearance. The most common species of the black mold isStachybotrys chartarum. It has been speculated that many black molds are toxigenic, which means they release mycotoxins that are particularly harmful to people with preexisting conditions.

    When these mycotoxins begin to accumulate in the body, it may lead to a condition known as mold poisoning which affects the upper respiratory system adversely.

    Common mold poisoning symptoms are the same as that of mold allergies. People who are suffering from asthma or any other chronic lung disease, these mycotoxins will make their condition miserable. They will exhibit severe symptoms such as:

  • Headache or migraine
  • Hand and feet numbness
  • Stomach pain
  • After becoming conversant with the health issues caused by molds, its high time to discuss how doctors test for mold exposure.

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    How Do You Test For Mold Spores In The Air

    The most common and reliable way to test for mold spores in the air is through non-viable air sampling. This is also called a spore trap analysis.

    A trained indoor environmental professional will collect samples of air, using a calibrated air pump. The air will be collected onto non-viable mediums, called cassettes.

    The microscopic airborne spores get pulled into these cassettes, which have an adhesively coated glass slide medium. As mold spores enter in, they become impacted into the glass slide medium.

    The cassettes are then delivered and microscopically analyzed by a trained environmental microscopist or mycologist at an accredited laboratory.

    Indoor Mold Exposure Prevention

    Is There A Blood Test To Determine Mold Allergy?

    Use central air conditioning with certified asthma and allergy-friendly filter attachment. This can help trap mold spores from the entire home.

    • Lower indoor humidity. If indoor humidity is above 50 percent, fungi will thrive. A hygrometer can measure humidity. The goal is to keep humidity below 45 percent, but below 35 percent is better. For those who use humidifiers, the fluid reservoir should be cleaned at least twice a week to prevent mold growth. Air conditioners and dehumidifiers can also be a source of mold.
    • Prevent mold and mildew build up inside the home. Pay close attention to mold in bathrooms, basements, and laundry areas. Remove any sources of dampness. Use an exhaust fan or open a window in the bathroom during baths and showers. Remove bathroom carpeting from places it can get wet. Scour sinks and tubs monthly. Repair plumbing leaks before mold can grow.
    • Make sure rainwater drains away from the home. Remove leaves and dead vegetation near the foundation and in rain gutters

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    How Do Doctors Diagnose Mold Allergy

    To diagnose an allergy to mold or fungi, the doctor will take a complete medical history. If they suspect a mold allergy, the doctor often will do skin tests or allergen specific IgE blood tests. Extracts of different types of fungi may be used to scratch or prick the skin. If there is no reaction, then you probably dont have an allergy. The doctor uses the patient’s medical history, the skin testing results and the physical exam to diagnose a mold allergy.

    Start A Neural Retraining Program

    Certain areas of the body are more vulnerable to mycotoxins, and the brain is one of them. Certain areas of the brain can end up in a chronic fight or flight response and according to McElroy, No pill can fully stop this response, so we have to retrain certain neural pathways to put the response into a heal and rest state. She often recommends Annie Hoppers Dynamic Neural Retraining System. This is essential for full recovery, says McElroy.

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    Does This Sound Familiar

    While allergic reactions to substances like peanuts and bee stings are unmistakable, a mold allergy certainly sounds a lot like just being sick. Mold allergies are not just uncomfortable but deceptive as well. Diagnosing a mold allergy can be challenging because its so easy to mistake it for a cold, the flu, or another upper respiratory infection. What sets a mold allergy apart?

    Keep The Bedroom An Allergy Safe Zone

    Why you should consider food allergy testing

    According to Dr. Reinhardt, the most important place to get rid of allergens is in the bedroom. Most people spend six to 12 hours in the bedroom sleeping, so it is important to make this a “safe zone.” But removing allergens is sometimes easier said than done.

    Let’s say you have a pet dander allergy. Depending on the severity of your symptoms, this might mean that you just need to keep your pet out of the bedroom, or you may need to regularly deep-clean the room thoroughly to get rid of residual pet dander, including all of your bedding. Steam cleaning and dry cleaning may be necessary. If these measures fail, and your allergies don’t improve, it may be necessary to find a new home for your pet if you’re really sufferinglet your healthcare provider be your guide.

    Removing other allergens may be easier : dust mites, for example, can be controlled by diligent cleaning, again, especially in the bedroom. This includes curtains, blinds, and all bedding. Some sources recommend encasing your bedding in a plastic or rubber wrapping. It is also important to dehumidify your home, since dust mites thrive in humid environments.

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    How Can I Be Exposed To Mold

    People are exposed to molds every day, usually by touching or breathingthem. Because molds naturally exist outdoors and indoors, living in a totallymold-free environment is practically impossible. As molds grow, spores can bereleased into the air where they can be easily inhaled. People who inhale largenumbers of spores may get sick. Possible health concerns are an importantreason to prevent mold growth and to clean up molds in indoor environments.

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