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Respiratory Hazard - Mould Whitepaper

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Moulds can be beneficial to our lives. Think of your favourite mushroom, life- saving antibiotics or the yeast that makes our bread. For the most part, it's a completely harmless micro-organism that not only helps our ecosystem evolve, but has been known to save lives. But do you know how to spot the good mould from the bad? Do you know how to keep yourself safe from its potential impact on your lungs, skin and eyes? We do. That's why we've spent decades giving you the information you need to spot potential risks while improving respiratory protection products that help keep you out of harm's way. Because no matter whether you work in the construction industry or are tackling mould in your own home - it's never worth jeopardizing your health and that of your loved ones. Here's an overview of what you need to know about mould to help you steer clear of its harmful side effects. Mould is an overarching term that's used to refer to a large group of over 1.5 million different micro-organism spanning everything from yeast, to penicillin and toxic black mould. It can be found both indoors and outdoors, but needs a few key conditions to grow and expand: warmth, moisture and organic matter so it can get to work degrading and decaying. Mould reproduces by forming a large number of spores, which can become airborne and spread through insects, animals, wind, water and human activity. Risks surface when you inhale significant quantities of particularly harmful types of mould, such as Stachybotrys, Aspergillus and Toxigenic Moulds. What is Mould? The risks of exposure to mould are difficult to evaluate and are directly linked to a person's health and respiratory issues before exposure. For those with pre-existing conditions, including asthma, allergies or immune-suppressant illnesses, mould can pose a very serious threat. The body recognizes the mould as an allergen which triggers an immune system response. This can lead to wheezing, chest tightness, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, as well as fungal and lung infections. Depending on a person's susceptibility, age, state of health and level of exposure, they could also fall prey to allergy-like symptoms including a runny nose, irritated eyes, congestion, headaches, fatigue and skin rashes. How could it affect me? Beyond the dark spots and the musty smells Keeping you safe from Mould Magnification of Mould 3M Science. Applied to Life. is a trademark of 3M. Used under license in Canada. © 2016, 3M. All rights reserved.

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