Can You Believe What You’re Breathing?

Most people don’t realize how many common household toxins and pollutants they’re breathing in on a regular basis, just in the air of their homes alone. It’s crucial that individuals know the common suspects—harmful toxins— that may be present in their homes.

Despite the known risks from carcinogens produced by automobiles and factories, it’s inside buildings—homes, schools, work and offices—where we encounter the most harmful air.


Biological contaminants comprise a good percentage of the airborne health risks we encounter in our very own homes. These organisms build up in the body, until they reach levels that are toxic in health and well-being. These pollutants include: mold, bacteria, dust mites, animal dander and viruses, triggering health problems, especially respiratory problems.


Mold, which naturally occurs in the outdoors, can become potentially dangerous if it gets indoors and accumulates. Spores can travel inside, growing and reproducing in your very own home. Damp areas can be especially conducive for the growth of mold organisms. Inhaling dangerous quantities of mold and mildew can trigger health problems—respiratory issues, nausea, diarrhea and headaches. If you discover mold or mildew in your home, you should be very cautious about going in and trying to scrub it away, as that can allow the spores to become air borne and thus pose an even greater risk than before.

Conditions that Can Foster Mold Problems

Many different conditions can lead to the fostering of mold and mildew in your home. Flooding, leaks in the roof, plumbing leaks, and drainage problems, are common mold problems that are easily brought into your household. Damp basements, crawl spaces, and an unventilated steam coming from either your bathroom or kitchen, are often the places where the mold is let in. Having devices going— like humidifiers, or even just leaving out wet clothes to dry in your home, is asking for problems in the mold department.

How to Know If You Have a Mold Problem

In most occurrences, a mold problem can be easily smelled or seen. Mold will appear slightly fuzzy, or come in slimy patches that will grow in size over time. A musty odor is often produced from mold, which can always be detected. The best method for detecting mold is to search questionable areas for signs of mold growth or for water staining.