By now, East Coast residents deeply impacted by Sandy are beginning to return to their everyday, normal lives. However, there is still much work to be done in order to restore the heavily affected areas. While some families lost everything, others received immense amounts of damage. Currently, one of the biggest concerns for homeowners is the mold they acquired as a result of the flooding.
Mold is caused by excess moisture and can grow on virtually any type of surface. Items that have been damp for longer than two days are most likely to produce mold. Mold can be seen in the form of water stains or as a black or green substance, and can be detected by its musty smell. Mold can cause reactions in humans with weak immune systems, or that have a specific allergy to mold. Typical symptoms include headaches, skin irritations, nasal irritations, nausea and fatigue. However, more severe symptoms can occur, such as respiratory complications and other issues that can potentially lead to more serious illnesses.
Because mold has the potential to create severe symptoms, especially in young children and older adults, most of those affect by flooding are not taking any chances. Residents are ripping out carpets and walls that have the potential to gather mold and are planning to replace them with brand new equipment. Others are using mold cleaners and preventives that contain bleach and dehumidifiers in efforts to reduce or prevent mold appearances. According to an article on nbcnews.com, The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention have done numerous studies on the health dangers associated with mold and other harmful chemicals following hurricanes or other similar disasters. They have found that cases of illnesses from these chemicals greatly increase in the wake of such disasters. Therefore, those affected by Sandy should take extra precautions to prevent mold from appearing in their homes.