• Welcome to Phoenix Rising!

    Created in 2008, Phoenix Rising is the largest and oldest forum dedicated to furthering the understanding of and finding treatments for complex chronic illnesses such as chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), fibromyalgia (FM), long COVID, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS), mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS), and allied diseases.

    To become a member, simply click the Register button at the top right.

How Do You Get Away From The Mold!?? -REAL THREAD-

So I recently found mold visibly growing in my parents home (I'm in my 20s, disabled have to live w/ someone cause I can't take care of myself). At first I tried cleaning it myself, really bad mistake BTW, you guys don't have to tell me that.

In the house there was green mold on the back of the dressers and part of it on the walls. Grey mold growing around the windows, and some white? mold on the wall behind my bed. At least, I think it was mold. There was a little water damage in my bathroom do to the overflowing drain that leaked water into the wall (not quite sure how that works). Soon thereafter there was a musty smell whenever the shower was turned on. I rarely bathe in there, but the wall adjoins my bedroom (which is where I found all this visibly growing mold anyway).

Parents are very hostile about all of this, tried cleaning up the visible mold with bleach to 'fix' the problem. Doctors want me to do ERMI and I'm just waiting for funds to come in to do it. All the advice I've gotten says to "get out of there!" But how can I?

I tried calling some family but it turns out they have visible mold and water damage too. What do I do? Where do I go? Is there any kind of safe house for moldies to detox in? I feel so hopeless and at the end of my options.


PS. Sorry for the multiple-posts, I'm not sure how to delete them.
Sofa, UK
Welcome to the forums Weathervane.

That's a really tough one you've asked there. Like you say, it needs to be somebody else who cleans the mold or you get nowhere, you just set yourself back when you try to clean it. And it's so, so hard to escape from - not all of it is obvious or even visible I suspect. I've never tried it, but an air filter mask might help while cleaning, if you have no choice but to do it yourself.

A couple of things have helped me, apart from just cleaning it away or getting others to do so...

First, I got an air filter (Bionaire), which filters out the particles in the air: so long as you get the right kind of unit, and change the filter regularly, it should filter out the spores, which both stops you from having to breath them in, and stops the mold from spreading within the house.

Second, I manage the air and humidity within my flat. So if you ever see condensation forming on the windows, that's bad, the air inside is too humid and you need to open a window. (And by the way, it's an air filter you want, NOT a humidifier, because humidifying the air will just make the mold worse!). But on the other hand, if I leave the windows open all the time which would be the normal healthy way to get clean, fresh air, then all kinds of spores and particles are getting in from the outside world - especially during autumn and spring (maybe that's why you're called Weathervane, if you've noticed that sort of effect?!). So nowadays, I tend to keep the windows shut most of the time, especially during those seasons (and I'm told the time of day is also worth paying attention to), and I open them for short periods if it ever gets too humid inside, or if the air needs freshening briefly.

Ultimately, the idea of escaping the mold completely is probably good advice IMO - ultimately, that is, in an ideal world. But it's so, so hard to do, and the stuff is so ubiquitous...that it's not realistic for many people in the short term at least. I think it's just another of those tough questions with no easy, perfect solution, I'm afraid...


Senior Member
Welcome to the forum, Weathervane. Mark had some great suggestions.

I live in western Oregon, so it's an ongoing battle for me too. I have a dehumidifier in my basement, a UV light that shines down on my furnace coils (don't know if this really works, but added it anyway) and buy expensive furnace filters that I toss once a month.

When I see visible mold, I put on a heavy duty mask and spray it with Concrobium Mold Control. This stuff is nontoxic and, unlike bleach which just gets rid of the surface mole, it encapsulates and eventually breaks down the mold entirely. I used it in an old wall-paper lined trunk that had smelled musty for years and it got rid of the odor completely. So I think it's pretty good at getting rid of the mold you can see.

I wish you luck in your efforts to combat the stuff. I will add that I've lived in really dry climates where there was no obvious mold and was just as sick there. So while I try to keep the stuff down to manageable levels, I view it as just another allergen I must combat. Of course if I had black mold, that would be another matter entirely!
I heard if you kill the mold the mold-toxins (which make you sick) still remain. How do you get rid of the mold-toxins?


Senior Member
When I lived in a particularly humid and moldy area of Virginia (near the Potomac), I had to use: 1) HEPA air filtration, 2) dehumidifier, and 3) steam cleaner. That was the only way I survived those years. Eventually I took B12 shots over a summer and moved west, where there is only a little humidity when it snows, otherwise dry and low or no mold. If you don't have much money, at least get a portable HEPA air filter for the room where you spend most of your time. The dehumidifier needs to be where you get exposure also, I kept one in my bathroom (off the bedroom). The steam cleaner is a great way to kill mold and keep things cleaned up (I bought a VaporJet unit, worth the money, but not cheap).

Everyone talks about moving, but that is only a part solution. Mold grows wherever humidity goes over 30-40%, and that is nearly everywhere at some time of the year (unless you want to live in Death Valley, CA). Even in the SouthWest, humidity can get over that part of the year, and during the hot and dry months people stay inside more using water, so humidity inside will spike and you still can get mold.

One more point, when you get other areas of your health managed, the mold sensitivity can decrease somewhat. In my case, mold sensitivity seems related to EMF exposure, low B12 and digestive dysbiosis flare-ups. Hope you find some answers!
Man, I wish this was my place. My parents are going bonkers over this issue, and my doctors are even on board with me so... man, this is rough. They just want to pour bleach on it and forget about it.