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Mold problems bring more patients to the doctor

By ALLISON NORLIAN

NEW HARTFORD, N.Y. (WKTV) - The Mohawk Valley has seen an increase in mold and it's because of the flood of 2013. The fungus has made many sick and increased patients at many local doctors offices.

The mold problems stemmed after still water filled up many people's basements, soaking their belongings including Katharina Fitch's, " It flooded very badly with some basement damage and a lot of water over the electrical box. We have to replace a furnace, water heater and an electrical box."

As the mold increased, many local Doctor's like Dr. Porus Dhabhar an allergist at Slocum Dickson found themselves treating an increased number of patients.

Dr. Dhabhar said he saw an increase of clients by 5-10 percent, who were complaining of upper respiratory problems such as nasal congestion, coughing spells and an increase in wheezing. His advice to homeowners with mold problems and respiratory issues is, " Number one: get rid of the water, dry out the basement, it is best that the humidity kept at 60 percent or less that will reduce mold population. If there is carpeting that got wet the only thing you can do about it is remove it, there is no other way out. For treatment, antihistamine and decongestant, nasal steroids and people who have asthma have exacerbation...the medicine will have to be increased appropriately and and decreased once they improve."

The doctor also suggests having two sump-pumps including a back up along with a dehumidifier for the winter to prevent mold from growing.

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