Black mold as it is commonly called or Stachybotrys as it is known in the scientific community, is a slimy greenish black mold that has been known to cause illness and even death. Moisture is essential to the growth of black mold, and when it is wet it is shiny in appearance. If you were to touch a spot of black mold, it would feel slimy. It has an earthy smell almost like rotting wood. Mold is very common in homes and will grow anywhere indoors where there is moisture. While there is no precise information about how often Stachybotrys is found in buildings and homes, it is not rare. It is not necessary, however, to determine what type of mold you may have. All molds should be treated the same with respect to potential health risks and removal.
Stachybotrys can grow on material with a high cellulose and low nitrogen content, such as fiberboard, gypsum board, paper, dust, and lint. Growth occurs when there is moisture from water damage, excessive humidity, water leaks, condensation, water infiltration, or flooding. Constant moisture is required for its growth. The best way to deal with Stacybotrys is to prevent it from growing in the first place. You should keep humidity level in house between 40% and 60%, Use an air conditioner or a dehumidifier during humid months, Be sure the home has adequate ventilation, including exhaust fans in kitchen and bathrooms. It is also important to use common sense, carpeting a basement or bathroom should be reconsidered.
If you had a water problem, and see or smell mold, you should call in a qualified profesional. The first thing that they should do is ascertain where the moisture came from and address the problem. Molds pose serious health risks and should be dealt with by professionals for peace of mind.