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Do you experience sinus problems throughout the year, regardless of what season it is? It is common for people to suffer from pollen allergies in the springtime or even from a common cold, however, if you have chronic, year-round sinus problems, or if you are experiencing allergies in the fall, you may have a sinus infection as a result of exposure to mold. That’s right: Not only does mold smell bad and have an unsightly appearance, it can also be detrimental to your health.

Mold is found everywhere, both outdoors and indoors, from rotting wood to basements, to bathrooms. It can fester in parts of your room without you realizing it, and on top of that, it can be tricky to get rid of. In this article, we will review how to identify a sinus infection, how they are caused, and why mold can cause sinus infections. Finally, we will advise on what you should do if you have sinusitis caused by mold. Mold can grow in newly built houses as well as older ones. While finding mold in your home is stressful and suffering from a sinus infection caused by mold is unpleasant, BIOSWEEP® of Alabama offers Mold Away Services to affordably and efficiently get rid of any mold problem.

What are the symptoms of a sinus infection?

Symptoms of sinusitis are similar to cold symptoms or reactions from a pollen allergy. Symptoms can include nasal or chest congestion, a runny nose, wheezing, and coughing. If you have a sinus infection, you may also experience headaches, sinus pressure or facial pain, and itchy or watery eyes. Acute or chronic sinusitis can cause inflamed nasal passages, fever, body aches, itchy rashes, fatigue, and post-nasal drip. In cases of acute or chronic sinus infection, these symptoms may last for twelve weeks or more. Nasal polyps, growths in the sinus tissue the size of a grape, can also result from sinusitis. All of these symptoms occur in people who are otherwise in good health. Unfortunately, sinusitis caused by mold shares symptoms with other sinus infections. Therefore, in order to find out whether or not your sinus problems are caused by mold, you will have to consult a doctor.

What causes sinus infections?

Until about 30 years ago, scientists believed that sinusitis was solely caused by bacteria or viruses. Now we know that chronic sinus issues are primarily a result of a mold allergy, according to a study done by Mayo Clinic. It is still a common misconception that sinus infections are only caused by bacteria, and not mold. Mold, which is a type of fungus, can cause a sinus infection (sinusitis) in those who are allergic or sensitive to it. However, only certain types of mold cause allergic reactions. Mold grows and spreads through spores. Allergic reactions in most people are caused by tiny mold spores. According to sinus surgeon Dr. Garrett Bennett, 16 percent of people in the United States possess a certain genetic trait in their DNA that makes them particularly prone to mold allergies. Mold can actually have a worse impact on the respiratory health of children, occasionally causing the development of asthma in children who are otherwise in good health.

Why can mold cause sinus infections?

Mold can cause a specific type of sinus infection known as fungal sinusitis. Allergenic mold called Alternaria can impact the nose, mouth, and upper respiratory tract and cause allergic reactions. If you have fungal allergies, breathing in mold can cause white blood cells to react to kill the fungus in the sinus lining. As a result of this reaction, a pit forms in the sinus lining which prevents mucus from draining properly. Fungi live best in damp, dark, environments, making the nasal cavity an ideal place for growth. Fungal sinusitis is difficult to get rid of, just like other fungal infections such as Athlete’s foot or nail fungus. Mold can gather on various surfaces in the home such as carpeting, curtains, upholstery, clothing, mattresses, bedding, and furniture. It also tends to form on leaky sinks and anywhere else that collects condensation. This can include appliances connected to plumbing, such as the refrigerator, the washer, and the dishwasher, windows, and basement walls.

What should you do if you think you have a sinus infection from mold?

If you suspect your sinus infection is fungal sinusitis, you should first confirm this with your doctor to rule out other possibilities. Your doctor may test you for fungal allergies via a blood test (analyzing a blood sample) or a skin test (analyzing the body’s immediate reaction to mold exposure). Once you have confirmed with your doctor that you likely have fungal sinusitis, you will need to treat your home and workspace for mold. Even if you take medicine that helps with your sinusitis, the infection will most likely continue to return so long as you are breathing in mold. Any other indoor spaces that you spend lots of time in should be rid of mold as well, such as your car. It is difficult to control exposure to mold outdoors, but fortunately, there are steps you can take to rid your indoor spaces of mold. Thankfully, mold spores that live outdoors tend to be less concentrated and are less often the cause of sinus infections.

Antibiotics will not work against fungal sinusitis, as they kill bacteria but not fungi. Decongestants will not do the job either. You will need proper mold remediation, which BIOSWEEP’s Mold Away Services offers at a reasonable and affordable price. Mold thrives in certain environmental conditions, such as moisture. It is necessary to seek help from professionals for a mold problem so these conditions, as well as the mold itself, can be dealt with. BIOSWEEP® sends out experts to find and target the source of the mold problem. BIOSWEEP® of Alabama removes mold spores and contaminants out of the air, as well as eliminating humidity. Unlike temporary fixes like sprays or bleach, BIOSWEEP® of Alabama’s mold remediation service will provide you with a long-term solution instead of a band-aid one.

Everyone should have living and working spaces that they feel happy and healthy in, which is why treating your home for mold is so important. Once your home has been treated for mold, you will be able to relax and enjoy a safe and comfortable home.