Antifungals for Your Home – What Works Best
While caring for hundreds of patients harmed by mold toxicity, we get countless questions about how to clean homes and belongings for mold contamination. We are not remediators and often refer questions to those who are more expert in the remediation world than we are, but we guide our patients in working with the remediators and provide all the information we can. This article supports some of our recommendations and may help guide you in remediating your own situation.
With many different products and many different recommendations for remediating mold out there, it can be difficult to determine which will actually work. There are so many expenses both for detoxing your body and detoxing your home, that there is no margin for ineffective home cleaning treatments. This article offers both immediate practical insight and some principles you may find helpful.
Starting with the helpful principles…. Some products are better than others. The authors compared 2 commercial products against “natural” 70% ethanol, vinegar, and tea tree oil. They found great differences in the efficacy between them.
And… Different fungi demonstrate different sensitivities to different disinfectants. The authors discussed past research with other fungi, but focused their experiments on a species of Aspergillus and a species of Penicillium. There were clear differences in efficacy for different fungi.
And… Not surprisingly, different concentrations of products had different efficacies. For some of the commercial products, the efficacy occurred at concentrations higher than is recommended for general use, potentially meaning they are not effective at recommended strengths.
Practical principle… Tea tree oil, an essential oil from Melaleuca alternifolia tree, showed better efficacy in the head to head trial than the other products for the 2 mold species tested. While I am aware of other research showing that different essential oils work differently on different mold species without one oil being the all-around winner, at least we can see that essential oils do work.
In helping patients restore healthier more abundant lives through detoxing their bodies and homes, we recommend a variety of mold disinfectants including essential oils. As different products work for different molds in different situations, we advise a combination of home cleaning approaches. At the very least, essential oil blends combining different oils that work on different molds, offers a great do it yourself option for either initial home detox or ongoing home maintenance. Just another aspect of what a functional MD like myself provides to our patients.
Article of focus:
Rogawansamy, Senthaamarai et al. “An evaluation of antifungal agents for the treatment of fungal contamination in indoor air environments.” International journal of environmental research and public health vol. 12,6 6319-32. 2 Jun. 2015, doi:10.3390/ijerph120606319
Sanctuary Functional Medicine, under the direction of Dr Eric Potter, IFMCP MD, provides functional medicine services to Nashville, Middle Tennessee and beyond. We frequently treat patients from Kentucky, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Ohio, Indiana, and more... offering the hope of healthier more abundant lives to those with chronic illness.