Mold climbs up walls, invades carpet and infests drywall.If you have children, then you should know that they are more susceptible to the health effects of mold because of their developing immune systems. Unfortunately, I still feel like there is a lack of information (or worse, disinformation) that is preventing parents from taking appropriate action.

Q. How do I know if my child is sick from mold?

A. Kids frequently get sick and can easily catch to many illnesses. Mold has many symptoms and can disguise itself as the flu or common cold. A child reacting to mold will experience sinus problems, congestion, and breathing difficulties. Look for coughing, sneezing, red eyes, and runny noses.

Q. Can mold give my child asthma?

A. The link between mold and asthma is uncertain, but at least some cases of asthma are caused when children are exposed to too much mold early in life. At the very least, mold will definitely exacerbate the conditions of someone who is already asthmatic.

Q. When should I hire a mold remediation company or mold removal specialist?

A. You should consider hiring outside mold removal when you discover an infected mold area larger than 10 by 10 feet. Otherwise, you may clean the mold yourself with a mold removal product. Do not use bleach.

Q. Can my child get sick from mold while at school?

A. Yes. In fact, it is more likely that your child will attend a moldy school than live in a moldy home. Our nation’s public school systems have a serious indoor air quality problem that is affecting 20% of all schools at least. Keep in mind, that mold affects people differently so some children will probably not exhibit the same symptoms.

Q. How can I contact the school if I suspect a mold problem?

A. Look for dirty carpet, water damage, and fuzzy, slimy, or discolored surfaces in the school. A brief inspection will tell you if the school requires mold removal. Alert your principal or school board member about the problem but do not be surprised if they do not take immediate action. Be persistent but not intolerable. Just in case, log all your calls and keep all letters sent.