While many people tend to forget about their basements, putting it on the back burner of things to take care may not be the wisest thing to do. One of the most important things to consider when making sure your basement is in order is to make sure that it is waterproofed. Waterproofing your basement is not only important in order to save your items stored in there from water damage, but leaks and flooding can often be quite expensive to fix. Perhaps most importantly however, if your basement is not waterproofed, it can lead to health risks through the growth of mold.
There are a variety of types of mold that can grow in moist locations such as your basement if not properly waterproofed. There are allergenic molds, pathogenic molds, and toxigenic molds. The spores that are released into the air from allergenic molds are not particularly life threatening. When breathing in these spores, typical side effects include coughing or having a dry, itchy throat. However, if you or a loved one is already allergic to mold or has asthma, they may be more negatively affected.
Pathogenic molds are a little more dangerous and can cause infections within the body. If someone suffers from a suppressed or weakened immune system, they can receive serious health risks from these molds. If you happen to have a healthy immune system, you will mostly likely be able to fight off the infections that can occur from this type of mold.
Finally, toxigenic molds can create serious health risks for everyone, regardless of how strong or healthy the immune system is. When breathing in spores from toxigenic molds the effects could be as minor as throat irritation to as dangerous as cancer. Most illnesses and symptoms that occur from toxigenic molds include chronic bronchitis, mental deficiencies, cancer, heart problems, chronic fatigue, multiple sclerosis, arthritis, lupus, bleeding lungs and much more. In order to help prevent you or your family from these illnesses, the best thing you can do is make sure your basement is waterproofed so molds do not grow in the first place.