Vertigo And Black Mold In Your Home: Are They Related?

The Unexpected Relationship Between Vertigo And Black Mold Exposure

Vertigo And Black Mold In Your Home: Are They Related?Sudden dizziness. Problems focusing or keeping your balance. Nausea. Sweating. Sudden hearing loss. The room feels like it’s spinning around you. Could the culprit be mold? The answer may surprise you.

The health impacts from mold exposure are real, and they can be severe. But part of the problem is that the symptoms often mimic many other common medical issues. As a result, you or your doctor may not pinpoint the actual cause right away.

And, yes: One of those problems can be vertigo, especially if your symptoms are new and persistent.

Now, that doesn’t mean mold is automatically to blame. After all, other, more common triggers are migraines, inner ear infections or problems, and head injuries.

But, if your sudden onset occurs along with signs of mold infestation, there’s a good chance the two are related. 

This article addresses the problem on a few different fronts. 

First, we’ll talk about the relationship between mold and vertigo. Then, we’ll talk a little more about the condition itself. Finally, we’ll walk you through how to check for mold in your home and what to do if you find it. 

We need to note that we are not medical professionals, and you should talk to your doctor about any health concerns. 

But, since our specialty is mini split and heat pump deep cleaning, we run into many mold problems in the Treasure Valley.

As a result, we’ve learned a thing or two about the effects of mold exposure. So, we’re sharing those with you here. If these problems sound familiar to you, and you use a mini split or heat pump to heat and cool part or all of your home in Boise Metro or Valley County, give us a call today.

Can Black Mold Cause Vertigo?

Black mold can cause vertigo in direct and indirect ways. First, exposure to mycotoxins in mold causes dizziness, triggering vertigo. Second, people who are allergic to mold can experience vertigo due to mold exposure.

Related: Can Mold Make You Dizzy?

Specifically, many doctors believe allergies can lead to Meniere’s disease, an inner-ear disorder that causes vertigo. While the exact causes aren’t yet known, allergies, viral infections, and head injuries appear to play significant roles. 

And, of course, this is far from the only problem people experience from black mold exposure. Less severe symptoms include rashes, watery eyes, runny noses, and trouble breathing. Other people experience anything from fatigue and nausea to “brain fog” and trouble concentrating. 

Related: Mold Toxicity And Physical Symptoms

What Is Vertigo, Exactly?

What Is Vertigo?Vertigo isn’t a disease itself. Instead, it’s a symptom caused by an underlying condition. For instance, we mentioned Meniere’s Disease as a trigger, along with inner ear infections, migraines, ear infections, and other disorders. It can be a one-time experience or become a chronic problem.
And that depends largely on what’s causing it for you. In the case of mold exposure, you’re likely to experience it more than if there’s a mold problem at home. We’ll talk more about that again later. But first, let’s go back to the physical symptoms you’re experiencing.

Four Ways To Address Vertigo

The four best ways to begin addressing chronic vertigo episodes are:

  1. Visit Your Doctor
  2. Change Your Sleep Habits
  3. Adjust Your Movements
  4. Do Specific Exercises

Visit Your Doctor

Your first step, no matter what, is visiting your doctor. You need to identify and hopefully rule out various illnesses that may be at the root of your problem. Your doctor will also help you put together a treatment plan and may prescribe medication for an underlying issue.

Change Your Sleep Habits

Get into a stress-free routine before bed, so you’re relaxed. Sleep on your back to avoid fluid buildup in your ears.

Adjust Your Movements

Try not to stoop down when picking up something. Don’t stretch your neck too far, and turn your head slowly and carefully. These steps avoid irritating your ears or otherwise triggering an episode. And, returning to your sleep habits: Get out of bed carefully and slowly when you wake up.

Do Specific Exercises

You can find many simple movement exercises that help end an episode or prevent future problems. 

Now that we’ve dug into those symptoms and how to avoid them, let’s talk again about eliminating specific triggers in your home. Specifically, mold. After all, finding and removing a mold infestation helps with more than just vertigo.

Related: Indoor Air Toxins And Their Symptoms

More Signs Of Mold In Your Home

Identifying a mold problem from physical symptoms is tricky because those symptoms mimic other medical issues. So, here are more things to look for:

Related: Healthy Air At Home Is Crucial For People With Asthma

Damp, Musty Smells

Damp, musty smells indicate a good breeding ground for mold (spores need dark, moist, and warm places to grow). And, the must smell on floors and walls can mean there’s already a problem.

Spots On Walls, Furniture And Clothing

Mold growth can take the form of fluffy or slimy spots that are black or white. You can find them on surfaces all over your home, and even shirts and other clothing items.

Warping Walls

Bulges, peeling wall/paper, and other signs that look like water damage may also be caused by mold growth behind the walls. At the same time, there may be a hidden leak that’s contributing to mold.

Ductless Mini Splits And Mold

Now, we need to address a source of mold and spores buildup that’s becoming more and more common in Idaho: Ductless mini splits in homes and businesses.

For the most part, these heating and cooling systems are excellent: THey provide exceptional comfort while using very little energy. But, the downside is that they are prime breeding grounds for microbial contaminants. And, they’re very tough to clean.

Remember how we mentioned that spores require dark, moist, warm places to grow? Well, you just described the inside of an air handler.

Warm air enters the system, and there’s no light in there. As the unit cools the air, water vapor condenses back into liquid. Most of it drains out from the unit, but there’s still some left in there.

The result? Mold growth that ends up looking like this:

A Ductless System Can Get Moldy If Not Taken Care Of

So, how do you get rid of it? 

As we said, it’s not easy — even for a professional HVAC tech. They’d have to take apart each unit in your home and scrub each one manually. That’s incredibly time-consuming when you have to get in between each of the small ridges on that coil we showed you there. 

That makes it very expensive and not consistently effective. Meanwhile, all that junk you see on the coil makes its way back into the air you breathe every day. 

Related: How Often Should A Mini Split Be Cleaned?

Fortunately, there’s a better solution out there: Hydrokleen’s world-renowned heat pump and mini split cleaning process. 

Our parent company, HydroKleen Global, spent more than ten years developing and improving the tools, processes, and nontoxic cleaners necessary to flush out all the dirt, toxins, and microbial contaminants from a mini split system in one quick visit. 

You can read more about our process in our Learning Library. But the long and short of it is: We’ll show you the progress we’re making during our visit so you can see what’s happening. And, we guarantee it improves your system’s performance and makes the air you breathe feel cleaner. 

If not, the cleaning is free. 

Mini Split And Heat Pump Cleaning In McCall, ID

HydroKleen208 provides world-renowned mini split and heat pump cleanings to homes and businesses from McCall, ID down through Boise. Our process eradicates mold, bacteria, and other microbial contaminants that make you feel sick at home. Call (208) 779-5596 with questions or to schedule an appointment.

What Is The Best Temperature To Prevent Mold In My Home?

What Is The Best Temperature To Prevent Mold From Growing At Home?

What Is The Best Temperature To Prevent Mold In My Home?The ideal temperature range for mold to grow in your home is 77 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Keeping the house cooler than that prevents growth. But, temperature is only one factor in spores or other organic toxins cultivating.

Related: How Mold In Ductless Mini Splits Causes Biotoxin Illness

Mold, in particular, requires dark places and moisture to grow. That means humidity plays a vital role in your home. And, warm air is always more humid than cold air. That means the summer is when a mold problem is most likely to take hold: 

What’s more, a mold problem won’t go away when the weather cools off. A large infestation continues growing year-round. And, over time, you’ll notice physical symptoms from constant exposure. 

Related: Mold Toxicity & Physical Symptoms

However, the good news is that there are plenty of ways to prevent this problem and related health issues in your home. Your air conditioner, particularly a ductless mini split, can play a crucial role in preventing it. In this article, you’ll learn how — along with some other non-HVAC-related tips.

At the same time, however, mini splits are often responsible for mold problems in homes and businesses — something to watch for. 

We’ll address that problem later in this article. But, if you have any questions about the indoor air quality or ductless system in your Treasure Valley home or business, call us at (208) 779-5596. You don’t need to make an appointment or anything to get more information. 

Recommended Air Conditioner Setting For Preventing Mold

Keeping the air conditioner set at 78 degrees or lower prevents mold buildup in the summer. Even when leaving for a few days or vacation, don’t set it above 80. A higher setting won’t provide enough dehumidification from the cooling process to prevent spores from growing.

This may be tricky for people who like to set the AC high to save money. But, you can take some extra steps that we’ll outline below.

Mold And Home Humidity

Proper Humidity Is Important To Stopping Mold GrowthIn general, the sweet spot for relative humidity in a home is between 30 and 60. No higher than 50 is ideal. That’s the range where mold won’t grow quickly. It also makes your home less attractive to cockroaches and other insects.

However, going below 30 percent can cause problems, including dry or cracking skin and nosebleeds. Air that’s too dry also dries out wood, which can damage flooring, furniture, or musical instruments.

Most smart thermostats also give you humidity readings. Or, you can buy humidistats for readings in different parts of your home.

Related: Can Mold Grow Without Moisture?

Controlling Humidity In Your Home

You can set your forced-air system to “Fan Only” if you don’t want to run your AC too much. That setting circulates air without heating or cooling it, so it doesn’t use as much energy. But, it gets rid of standing water in the system.

Also, avoid long showers and use exhaust fans during cooking. That gets rid of a lot of steam that will condense into water and stay in your home.

Room dehumidifiers are inexpensive and especially useful for basements or other areas of your home that get damp. Or, invest in a whole-home unit that works through your furnace or central air.

Finally, get rid of clutter: piles of stuff can become breeding grounds for mold, especially if they’re near a vent or blocking air from it. And, always drain standing water and dry the area around it.

Related: Healthy Air At Home Is Crucial For People With Asthma

Mold And Your Ductless Mini Split

Mini splits are much more prone to mold buildup than conventional systems. The problem is that the air handlers are warm from the heat transferring from the air to the refrigerant and from all the electronics.

And, there’s a lot of moisture inside them: As water vapor condenses to liquid, not all of it drains out.

The result is a lot of buildup, particularly behind the barrel fans and on the condenser coil. And you don’t get the same kind of airflow as forced-air systems with ducts and vents. So, water is more likely to pool.

People with ductless systems often complain of “stale air,” allergy symptoms, or skin irritation. All the microbial contaminants and biotoxins building up in the unit circulate through the air you breathe when the air handler is running.

For instance, this picture is a perfect example of what we find when we open an air handler:

A Ductless System Can Get Moldy If Not Taken Care Of

How To Clean Mold Out Of Your Mini Split

The best way to clean mold out of your mini split is with a professional deep cleaning. In particular, HydroKleen uses specialized tools and non-toxic cleaners to flush mold spores, bacteria, and all sorts of pollutants out of every nook and cranny in your heat pumps and air handlers.

Related: What To Expect With A HydroKleen208 Cleaning

You can prevent buildup by cleaning each air handler’s filter once a month. Getting rid of that dirt improves airflow and prevents mold growth. And a professional HVAC tune-up twice a year keeps things running smoothly all around. 

But, neither of those takes the place of professional deep cleaning. That’s the only way to sanitize the entire system without spending a lot more money to have someone take apart the whole system and individually scrub each component.

Related: How Often Should A Mini Split Be Cleaned?

Mini Split And Heat Pump Cleaning In Caldwell, ID

HydroKleen208 guarantees the best, most effective mini split and heart pump cleaning in Caldwell, ID and across the Treasure Valley. If you’re not satisfied, the cleaning is free, and we’ll pay for a competitor to come out next. Call us at (208) 779-5596 or click below for a free consultation or to schedule your cleaning.