Doctor’s Prescription for Mold Exposure?

It’s cold season. The weather is hot, then the next day it’s freezing. You wake up with a headache, stuffiness, sore throat, and runny nose. Just great – you’ve caught a cold. Your doctor agrees with the diagnosis and prescribes you antibiotics for treatment. But what if you are both wrong? What if your symptoms are actually caused by mold?

The common symptoms of an upper respiratory infection – or the common cold – include stuffiness, sore throat, headache, runny nose, coughing, malaise, and loss of appetite. But these are the same symptoms, among many others, commonly caused by allergenic or toxic mold. In fact, according to Dr. Carol Kauffman, “most of these infections are caused by a fungus.”

So what’s the harm in misdiagnosis? It turns out, a lot. A doctor who mistakes a reaction to mold with an upper respiratory infection will often prescribe antibiotics to fight the cold. In fact, 75% of all the antibiotics prescribed in the United States are for upper respiratory infections. The problem is that antibiotics kill bacteria and not all bacteria are bad. That bacteria is what protects us from mold infections in the first place.

There’s a constant struggle between mold and bacteria in our bodies. This struggle is normal and we are supposed to have a certain level of mold and a certain level of mold-fighting bacteria that balance each other out. Antibiotics throw off this balance, allowing mold to gain the upper hand.

This can cause mold colonies to start growing inside you unabated, producing mold infections like skin rashes and yeast infections. Yeast infections are often the result of an overuse of antibiotics. Mold is always around us, but most healthy people have immune systems that fight off infections. Antibiotics suppress that immune system.

Antibiotics for the common cold are usually a mistake anyway. Upper respiratory infections are almost always caused by a virus, not bacteria, so the antibiotics are ineffective.

Are You Allergic to Mold?

If you are allergic to mold, your doctor can prescribe medications to help decrease your mold allergy symptoms. If your allergy is severe, your doctor may refer you to an allergist (a physician that specializes in treating allergies) for shots that will decrease your body’s allergic response to mold spores.

You will also need to avoid exposure to mold as much as possible in order to prevent your symptoms from getting worse. Any mold in your home will need to be cleaned up as soon as possible. Doctors usually recommend against cleaning up mold yourself if you’re allergic to it, since the cleanup process exposes you to hundreds of thousands of mold spores that can make your symptoms much worse. Talk with your doctor or an allergist if you’re not sure if it’s safe for you to clean up a household mold problem yourself. Here is more information on removing mold from the home.

To protect your health, we recommend calling in a mold removal professional. A trained professional will know how to do the job safely, without exposing you to excessive allergens. A professional can also make sure all traces of mold are removed, even mold in hard-to-reach places (like inside walls, for example). For a list of experienced mold removal professionals in your area, follow the link. They offer free in-home consultations, so even if you aren’t sure you want to hire a professional, you have nothing to lose by consulting with one.

Elliot Environmental

Attic Mold in Chelsea

Michigan Black Mold Specialist – Mold Removal Michigan – RRP Certified firm, Certified Michigan mold inspection and removal company servicing both residential and commercial properties statewide

Ann Arbor Mold Specialist