Have you ever thought about the differences between mold and mildew? Let’s discuss them in detail.
If you fail to differentiate between mold and mildew, you aren’t the only one. Countless people fail to distinguish between the two and confuse them. In the following paragraphs, we will talk about how mold is different from mildew and how each of them affects your health.
So, let’s begin.
What Are Mold and Mildew?
Mold is a form of fungus, which is a product of mold spores. Mold spores are tiny particles, which are invisible to the naked eye. To grow and cause mold damage, these spores need moisture and a food source. Mold normally hides within the dark and damp areas of your home. It is detrimental to your health as well as the various surfaces and materials.
Mildew belongs to the family of mold. However, it only grows on flat and moist surfaces. The damages it causes are more cosmetic in nature. Mildew does pose health risks, but they aren’t as severe as the ones caused by mold. Mildew can be damaging to plants and crops, but it can be treated with ease.
How Do Mold and Mildew Affect Your Health?
As discussed above, mold can be detrimental to health. If you are allergic or have asthma, ingesting mold spores can make your condition severe. Some of the most common symptoms of mold exposure are as follows.
- Stuffy and runny nose
- Dry and scratchy skin
- Shortness of breath
- Chest tightness
The health symptoms of mildew exposure are similar to that of mold exposure. Symptoms of mold exposure include headaches, congestion, and irritation in the nose, throat and the eyes.
Where Do Mold and Mildew Grow?
As discussed earlier, mold enters your home in the form of tiny spores. Mold growth takes place when these spores find moisture and a food source. Mold can grow anywhere, but it prefers growing in damp areas like your attic and the basement.
Mildew, on the other hand, tends to grow in areas where water is regularly used. These areas include showers, areas surrounding the bathtub, laundry rooms, and the kitchen sink.
How to Identify Mold and Mildew
Mold usually appears fuzzy to the human eye, and it can take several colors. Grey, brown, green and black mold is quite common. Furthermore, mold has a pungent, musty or earthy odor, which is similar to the smell of a damp basement.
Mildew, on the other hand, is powdery in texture, and is often greenish or brownish in color. However, it smells just as musty as mold, and that is why distinguishing between the two is difficult.