PM2.5 and its Link to Mold Proliferation

As PM2.5 reading went well over 400 last night in Western Singapore, it brought to mind how damaging such minute particulates can be.

These small particles have a large surface-to-air ratio, and thus have a higher chance of being inhaled. Upon inhalation, these particles penetrate farther into our lungs as they possess the ability to bypass our respiratory defense mechanisms. Prolonged exposure to them can lead to respiratory tract irritations and even lung cancer. And guess what? It does not stop here. Such a by-product (i.e. small particulates) of combustion is, in fact, a source for mold growth/proliferation.

Mold is a kind of fungus and it is important in the environment as it breaks down fallen leaves and dead trees. However, with its proliferation indoors, the microbe holds the potential to damage furniture and structure while simultaneously increasing the risks of contracting an array of discomfort and illnesses.

Mold requires a nutrient source, proper temperature and moisture to grow. It gets its nutrients by breaking down hydrocarbons (which are ubiquitous in a building’s environment) and strives in the same temperature range of an indoor environment. To make it a triple whammy, Singapore’s high relative humidity levels (mean annual: 84%) make mold growth an easy endeavor. Porous materials and small particulates (i.e. dust) provide the medium for growth and transport of mold spores. Hence, with a higher PM2.5 concentration in the atmosphere, a higher number of ‘platforms’ available for mold to multiply.

Generic mold exposure can lead to allergenic symptoms like sinus congestion, watery eyes, hives, itchy ears and many more. Toxic mold exposure leads to heart inflammation, bone marrow disruption, miscarriage, and even death. What makes toxic mold even scarier is that it continues to produce harmful mycotoxins even in a dormant state!

Airion SA9500 Air Purifier Air Filter

As such, when purchasing an air purifier/cleaner with the aim of having a better indoor living environment, look for high airflow air purifiers with good-grade HEPA filters (H13 and above) and photocatalytic filters that can handle mold spores along with bacteria. AOM’s SA-9500 comes with a 10-stage filtration process, 5 of which are photocatalytic filters, to ensure a comprehensive air purification process.

Gelair Air Products that are used to beat mold issues

Should you have overlooked the mold/bacteria aspect when purchasing your air purifier, you may want to consider introducing anti-bacteria and anti-mold products into your indoor environment. Gelair is made of top-grade natural Australian Tea Tree Oil with proven anti-bacteria and anti-mold capabilities (well over 99.9%) that prevents mold proliferation in your indoor environment. It comes in solution, block, and tub forms for different applications.

Mold Busters logo in Singapore

Lastly, should your home be infested with mold, do not remove it with water (however convenient it might be). It will only make the situation much worse. Engage a professional, like Mold Busters for instance, to have it removed.

As the tagline goes: Good life begins with better air!