Natural Remedies for Mold & Mildew Allergies, Healthfully

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Natural Remedies for Mold & Mildew Allergies

Mold and mildew allergies occur when the immune system erroneously responds to mold spores, causing symptoms that include itchy eyes, sneezing and fatigue. Allergy medications, such as antihistamines and decongestants, can help relieve mold allergy symptoms, but may cause unwanted side effects that include dry mouth and sedation. While there is no known cure for mold and mildew allergies, natural remedies may help alleviate symptoms while reducing the overall stress on your immune system.

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.

Dietary Considerations

Foods that are fermented or contain mold may worsen symptoms in a small portion of sensitive individuals. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, fermented foods, such as:

  • red wine
  • can trigger the release of histamine by constricting blood vessels
  • resulting in increased allergy symptoms [1](http://www.aafa.org/display.cfm?id=9&sub=16&cont=58 ‘inline-reference::Asthma
  • Allergy Foundation of America: Mold Allergy’)

Actual allergic reactions to fungi in foods are rare and aren’t necessarily more likely to occur in people with mold and mildew allergy. Foods high in sugar may promote overgrowth of Candida yeast in the body, which can interfere with digestion and immune function.

Herbs And Supplements

Herbs with anti-fungal properties can help ease symptoms of mold and mildew allergies. Garlic is one of the most well known anti-fungal herbs available. According to the National Institutes of Health, garlic contains the compound ajeone, which inhibits the growth of Candida and Aspergillus fungi 2. Other herbs with anti-fungal effects include pau d’arco, oregano oil and tea tree oil. Nutritional supplements, including vitamin C and selenium, may also help lessen allergy symptoms by strengthening the immune system.

Over-the-counter supplements can cause dangerous side effects and interactions with other herbs and medications. To prevent negative reactions, ask your doctor before taking an herbal or nutritional supplement.

Reducing Exposure

Prevention is the best treatment for mold and mildew allergies. Decreasing exposure to mold spores in your home environment is an important factor in treating allergic reactions.

To control humidity levels, use a dehumidifier in damp rooms, including bathrooms and basements. Keep vents and fans clean, and consider buying an air cleaner with a HEPA filter to help remove mold spores from the air. Keep gutters clear of debris and address leaks within 48 hours to prevent extensive water damage and mold growth.

Keep an eye on the local allergen forecast, and avoid outdoor activities when mold spore counts are highest. Wear a mask when raking leaves or doing yard work, and keep windows closed in your home and car to prevent additional mold spore exposure.

Mold and mildew allergies occur when the immune system erroneously responds to mold spores, causing symptoms that include itchy eyes, sneezing and fatigue. Allergy medications, such as antihistamines and decongestants, can help relieve mold allergy symptoms, but may cause unwanted side effects that include dry mouth and sedation. Other herbs with anti-fungal effects include pau d’arco, oregano oil and tea tree oil. Decreasing exposure to mold spores in your home environment is an important factor in treating allergic reactions. Keep an eye on the local allergen forecast, and avoid outdoor activities when mold spore counts are highest.

healthfully.com

Is Hidden Mold at Home Making You Sick?

March 23, 2004 — Except for an occasional asthma flare up, Caitlin Murray is a healthy, happy 5-year-old, who loves doing artwork. But three years ago, she was terribly sick, and no one could figure out why.

«She would have terrible headaches and her face was swollen and she’d throw up sometimes for seven to 10 days,» Jill Murray, her mother said. «They tested her for cystic fibrosis, for leukemia, all kinds of diseases and they couldn’t find anything wrong with her.

Caitlin said it was a terrible feeling.

«I was like really, really sick,» she said. «I was feeling like I was going to die in a few days.»

Her mother had a gut feeling that whatever was making her daughter sick was in their Pennington, N.J., home.

«We started working with the head of the diagnostic center at Children’s Hospital Philadelphia,» Jill Murray said. «He said ‘Try it. Leave your house. That’s the only way you’ll know.’ «

In the basement, Murray checked inside a crawlspace. There was mold everywhere.

«And with that we just got out,» Murray said. «We literally took the shirts on our backs and left.»

Caitlin’s suffering went on for three years before the girl finally felt better. The Murrays’ experience is not unique. Because modern homes are more tightly sealed for energy efficiency, water — which mold needs to survive — gets trapped inside.

Modern building materials like wood, drywall, wallpaper and fabric are appealing food sources for mold, while building technologies such as synthetic stucco can leak and trap moisture inside. Home appliances including clothes dryers and dishwashers also generate water vapor, again creating the type of environment that mold can thrive on.

Concerns About Toxic Mold

«Mold spores are everywhere,» said Meg Hamilton, CEO of Hamilton Thorne Biosciences. «They’re in your house, in your attic, on the street, in your living room, in your kitchen. It’s a question really of how much and what species.» Some molds are worse than others, said Tom Kelly, a director of the indoor environments division at the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

«There are a relatively small number of mold species that have been identified as producing a kind of toxin called mycotoxin,» Kelly said. «What’s not clear is whether they are toxic to human beings.»

Some industry experts say there’s growing evidence that they may be.

«We certainly are beginning to see strong indications that the so-called toxic mold can make you very ill,» Hamilton said.

Whether some molds are more dangerous than others is just one of the questions researchers like Dr. David Zhang, a research biologist at New York’s Mt. Sinai Medical Center, are trying to answer. There are more than 100,000 mold species, and about 50 are considered toxic. He has invented a DNA-based technology that spotlights the bad ones.

Scientists and doctors do agree on one thing: about one in three people can have allergic reactions to mold. For asthma sufferers who are very young, like Caitlin, or elderly, mold can trigger much more serious problems.

Destroying Home Values

The fungus can affect more than just health. Dan Sitomer, an attorney specializing in mold litigation, says it could destroy the value of your home.

«For the moment in time that that building is viewed as a problem its value goes to zero,» Sitomer said. «The litigation is so aggressive and has multiplied so quickly that it has frightened the insurance industry. The damages can include almost anything. Pain and suffering, negligence, the claims go on and on.»

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Most insurance policies do not cover damages related to mold, according to Gordon Stewart, president of the Insurance Information Institute. «In 44 states, mold is excluded, unless it is the direct result of a peril that is covered,» Stewart said. For example, some insurance companies do not cover mold, but do cover water leakage, which can cause mold to grow.

Meanwhile, articles about mold — like one in the magazine Redbook headlined «It’s Invisible. It’s Deadly. And It’s in your home» — have made many homeowners nervous. With unanswered health questions, the looming risk of litigation, prospects of nose-diving property values and no insurance safety net, what’s a homeowner to do?

Experts agree on one thing: If you’ve got mold you need to get rid of it. More importantly, you need eliminate the cause.

«We say: ‘Find the moisture, eliminate the moisture, clean up the mold,’ » Kelly said. «Come back a month later, make sure it’s still gone.»

It is possible to have mold and not know it. If you can’t find it yourself, a «mold dog» may be able to help. Jason Earl, a mold inspector works with a mold dog named Oreo. In the same way dogs can be trained to detect drugs and explosives, Oreo can find mold, he says.

Tracking Mold in Your Home

How does mold get into houses?

Mold is everywhere, in the air indoors and out. To reproduce, mold generates spores (seeds) that become airborne. These spores can remain dormant for 50 years or more.

They become active when they come into contact with moisture and food. Where there’s mold there is always water. Mold colonies develop which, in turn, release more spores into the air. How do you know if you might have mold?

Surface mold. Signs of water intrusion (discoloration, peeling or bubbling paint, bulging walls or ceilings). Water intrusion (broken pipe, flooded basement, roof leak, etc.) that wasn’t completely dried out within 24 — 48 hours. A musty smell.

Persistent physical symptoms (sneezing, runny noses, red eyes and skin rashes) that seem to lessen when the sufferer is not at home. If you see mold on the walls or floors of your home, and it’s less than a 3-foot by 3-foot patch, clean it using bleach and water, and let it dry completely. If you see any spots larger than that, contact an industrial hygienist. (Try the American Industrial Hygiene Association at aiha.org for a referral.)

When should you consider a mold inspection?

When there is a musty smell, but you cannot find any visual evidence. When there is visual evidence and you need to determine the extent of infestation and damage. When there is no visual evidence or smell, but a member of the family has persistent symptoms (sensitivities vary by individual). When you need help locating the source of the water that’s causing the mold. When you’re buying or selling a home. When you need a formal plan to remove the mold and repair the damage.

When you need someone to supervise mold removal and repairs.

How do you select someone to remove the mold and fix the damage?

It is recommended that inspection and remediation not be done by the same person/firm. Insist that the firm/person have a contractor’s license. Look for remediators who are certified. Check with the licensing board and Better Business Bureau for complaints. Ask for references for similar jobs. Call references and ask if the job was done properly, on time and within budget. Inquire if a mold test was done after the remediation work. If you see mold, find the source of moisture, correct it and clean up the mold. If you see signs of water leaks, investigate for mold.

If you smell mold, consider having a qualified mold inspection firm test for mold, locate the mold, determine the extent of the mold, determine the source of moisture and come up with a remediation plan.

How do you prevent mold?

Locate and fix water leaks immediately. Dry water from water leaks within 48 hours. Make sure clothes dryers are properly vented to the outside. Use exhaust fans when cooking, showering or using dishwasher. Insulate exterior walls to prevent condensation inside. Keep indoor humidity below 50 percent. Remember: Just cleaning up mold is not enough. You must find the water source and eliminate it.

How do you clean up mold?

Wear rubber gloves and eye protection. For larger infestations (more than several square feet) wear a N-95 respirator. Wash hard surfaces with water and detergent. Discard absorbent materials like carpet and ceiling tiles. Cleaning up the mold is not enough. You must eliminate the water source.

For more information on mold, here are some online resources:

abcnews.go.com

15 Effective Home Remedies to Get Rid of Mold and Mildew in House

With the rains come a whole new set of problems that can affect the overall appearance of your home; yes, the slimy sticky and ugly mold and mildew, every homemaker’s nightmare! From brown to dirty green, mold and mildew come in almost every shade of color and are usually found in the corners or moist areas. A result of excess fungal or bacterial growth, mildew is commonly found in humid and moist corners of the house. Getting rid of mold is no easy feat, don’t worry though, mentioned below are some simple and effective home remedies for getting rid of mold and mildew in the house-

What causes mold and mildew growth

Mold usually grows on cold damp places where there is little or no sunshine, i.e. areas like the kitchen corners, bathroom, garden shed etc. Listed below are some main reasons behind mold growth:

  • Bacterial or fungal growth
  • Moist and humid climate, especially the rainy seasons
  • Leaking roofs and damp walls
  • Flooding
  • Poor ventilation, no access to sunlight
  • Unhygienic lifestyle and unclean homes

Look out for these symptoms

You must be familiar with the damp, rusty smell and dirty green and black patches usually associated with fungal growth. Not only is this mold ugly and pesky to look at, it poses serious health threats as well. Mentioned below are some signs to know whether your house is infected by mold and mildew:

  • A damp musty smell would be present all over the house
  • Brown, green or black patches of fungi in the corners, walls etc.
  • White and mouldy fungi accumulation on books, clothes, cardboard, and wooden furniture
  • It even causes allergies, sneezing and irritation

15 home remedies to get rid of mold and mildew

Get rid of stubborn and smelly mold spots naturally. Browse through the list of top 15 home remedies for getting rid of mold and mildew, cleaning mold has never been easier!

Natural fixes:

1. Baking soda

A mild but powerful disinfectant, baking soda fights the bacterial growth and prevents moulds on walls and other areas. It absorbs the moisture and curbs the mildew accumulation. Add ¼ tablespoon of baking soda to lukewarm water and shake it well. Spray the mouldy areas with this solution and then scrub the area thoroughly. Natural, effective and non-toxic it is one of the best home remedies for getting rid of molds and mildew

2. Vinegar

Vinegar is a pretty common item always present in the kitchen. This liquid is not only useful for enhancing the taste of your dishes but also remove stubborn stains and cleans mold in house. Mild and non-toxic, vinegar is an acidic solution used to destroy about 82% of mold species. Use pure undiluted white vinegar and spray it on the affected areas to kill the mold naturally. For best results leave the mixture for about an hour and wipe it clean with a cloth. You can add some lemon and baking soda to the mixture as well.

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3. Alcohol sprays

Vodka and other alcoholic beverages are so much more than just drinks you can enjoy at a party; they offer instant solution for mold growth as well. The acidic consistency of vodka is ideal for killing the fungal growth. Spray some vodka directly on the affected areas and see the magic for yourself! It gets frizzy within seconds; now all you have to do it wipe the dead mold with a wet cloth or sponge. Also it is pretty useful for removing sticky fungal mold on clothes. Quick, effective and easily accessible, alcohol is among the best known home remedies for removing mildew and mold.

4. Hydrogen peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is a non-toxic, safe but effective solution for curing mold and mildew in the house. Tough on the fungal colonies but soft on your hands, this anti-fungal and anti-bacterial chemical can be used of a variety of surfaces, from walls to kitchen floors, to moldy window sills, it can be sprayed anywhere. Spray just a bit of concentrated hydrogen peroxide on the moldy surface and leave it for some time, then thoroughly scrub the area to remove the mold growth and stains. Be careful about using it on some delicate surface such as clothes as this chemical can even act as a bleaching agent.

5. Tea tree oil

Among the best and most effective of home remedies for cleanup mildew, tea tree oil is 100% natural and rich in anti-bacterial properties. This herbal oil not only eradicates the mold but also prevent it from recurring. Add 100 ml tea tree oil and vinegar to 50 ml water, spray this solution on the affected areas. Scrub the walls clean of the mould before you apply the spray. Tea tree oil even fights the mold smell and is a smart and practical solution for mold removal in bathroom and other moist areas.

6. Grapefruit extract:

Although a bit expensive, the grapefruit extract is known for giving effective and long lasting results. Absolutely safe and non-toxic, this fungicide is among the best home remedies for eliminate the mold growth. Also grapefruit extract works well on all kinds of surfaces and can kill all mold species without the corrosive smell or any side-effects. It even prevents regrowth and is ideally suited to be used around children.

7. Distilled ethanol:

Easily available in any stationery store, this pest control product can tackle the toughest of mold and mildew very efficiently. Distilled ethanol is especially useful to get rid of black mold often found on the bathroom floor. All you have to do it spray some of it on the moldy areas. It even wards off the rusty mold smell and protects your family from the various mold allergies that can pose serious health problems. Cover your nose and hands properly before you begin.

8. Soap water:

Soap water is generally used in the cleaning process and is a very simple and convenient home remedy. Soapy water works wonders on mouldy surfaces! Scrub the affected area clean with sandpaper or a scrubber then wash the surface with soap water. You can use any soap or detergent for this purpose. Repeat this process every day to prevent any regrowth.

9. Varnish:

Varnish is another useful home remedy to get rid of the mold; it contains anti-fungal properties and works well in wooden surfaces. Often used in pest control, varnishes effectively kill the fungal growth and also protect the wooden furniture from termite infestation. Scrub the area clean and apply a coat of varnish to the affected area for long lasting results. Ensure that there are no kids nearby and wear gloves and mask before you begin cleaning.

10. Chlorine bleach:

Among the cheapest and most effect of home remedies for getting rid of mold, chlorine bleach can remove the fungal colonies completely and leave the surface as good as new! Sprinkle some chlorine bleach on the affected areas and leave it for some time to take effect. Then scrub it clean with a cloth and wash the entire surface with soap water to get rid of the mold. Tough and long lasting, chlorine bleach also fight the damp mold smell and is perfect for mold removal in bathrooms.

What you can do:

11. Scrub it off:

One of the best and perhaps most obvious methods to get rid of mold and mildew is to thoroughly scrub it off. You can use soap water, baking soda, vinegar or any other bleaching agent to soften up the fungal growth first. Also it is always recommended that you scrub or wipe the affected area clean with a sponge or a wet cloth before you apply any herbal oil or disinfectant chemical spray. Scrubbing the mouldy surface effectively removes the fungal growth and it is easier to clean the stains.

12. Controlling the moisture levels:

A simple and obvious solution for curbing the mold and mildew growth in the corners is to control the moisture levels of the house. Fungi usually thrive in wet and humid environment, this means bathrooms, kitchen areas and garden shed are more prone to fungal growth. Install exhaust fans and ensure that there are no leakages and damp ceiling in the house. Ensure that there are no damp spots, wet rugs or clothes lying about the house. Keep your house as dry as possible.

13. Proper ventilation and sunlight:

Open all the doors and windows to allow proper air circulation and sunlight to stream in. Sunlight is perhaps one of the best home remedy for getting rid of molds and mildews, it not only destroys molds but even prevents further fungal growth. Also fix the ventilation of the house, build ventilators in every room and get exhaust fans installed to protect your house from molds. Also install air filter and mold and mildew spore catching filters in your air conditioner to clean the air of any fungi or bacteria.

14. Installing dehumidifiers:

As fungi usually grow in damp and humid temperatures, installing dehumidifiers is a practical solution for preventing molds and mildew growth in the house. And although dehumidifiers are quite an investment, they offer long term protection against any fungal growth, and even balance the house temperature. By installing a dehumidifier in the central air conditioning system of the house you can easily regulate the temperature and prevent fungal growth effectively.

15. Tile and grout sealing:

Cleaning the tiles and sealing up the grout for good is another effective solution to prevent any fungal infestation. Unfinished kitchen ties and broken bathroom floors often becomes a breeding ground for the fungi colonies and can lead to massive mold and mildew growths. Oftentimes you must have noticed brown or yellow stains on the floor this is due to the fungal growth, clean the tiles regularly and seal them properly for extra protection. You can get some professional help or use natural home remedies such as beeswax or herbal oils to seal the tiles and grout for good.

Some precautionary measures to prevent mold growth

Mold and mildew is found both indoors and outdoors, from the doors, walls, ceiling, cupboards, to the backyard and garden shed…it is everywhere! You can adopt these preventive measures to reduce mold growth:

  • Open the doors and windows, let the sunlight stream in
  • Cover your nose and mouth properly before you begin the cleaning spree.
  • Fix the leaking roofs, windows and pipes to prevent mold on walls
  • Fix the ventilation issues, add exhaust fans and ventilators in bathroom and kitchen
  • Clean the corners thoroughly, especially after floods
  • Take steps to control the humidity levels, keep the house warm and dry,

The bottom line:

Other than the chemicals and disinfectants available at supermarkets, you can even apply these above mentioned home remedies for getting rid of mold and mildew accumulation. Very convenient and effective, these home based methods take effect almost immediately.

See also:  The 6 Best Flea Collars for Cats in 2020

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Mold on the walls in the apartment: how to get rid of the harmful fungus at home?

  • The main condition for the destruction of mold
  • Directions of struggle
  • Versatile folk remedies
  • Features of work depending on surface types
  • Working with special tools

Many do not know how to get rid of mold in the apartment until the problem touches them personally. High humidity with poor ventilation leads to the appearance of mold. Invisible to the eye, arguments quickly spread around the room in search of secluded corners, and soon the apartment is filled with an unpleasant smell, and on the surfaces there is a nasty dark raid.

The main condition for the destruction of mold

The fungus on the walls can survive a lot. In some apartments, with regular procedures, he has been terrorizing tenants for years. And it’s not about the wrong choice of means or cleaning procedures — even ordinary furatsilin will help in this case. Disputes are hiding in distant cracks, and then joyfully get out, where they can not be washed. Most often, one has to be interested in how to get rid of black mold, less often there are other varieties.

Why? The problem is in the microclimate of housing. Until the humidity becomes stable low, the positive effect of the work can only be temporary.

It is necessary to carry out a number of manipulations:

  • check the ventilation system and thermal insulation;
  • separately check the humidity in the kitchen and bathroom, troubleshoot the plumbing;
  • install electric dehydrator system;
  • if there are places where the paint went to the hills, remove it, treat the surface with an antiseptic to remove the mold, and paint over with a fresh layer;
  • with acetic detergents to destroy spores in cracks and crevices;
  • do not dry things in the apartment, straighten the shower curtains, purchase towel drying in the bathroom.

If everything is done correctly, then after fulfilling these elementary rules, the means of mold on the walls will bring the expected effect, and you will say goodbye to the harmful guest.

Directions of struggle

  1. First of all the fungus on the walls should be cleaned mechanically. The same procedure is carried out with a floor covering, a ceiling and furniture, which also was struck. Most often this is part of the side of a damp wall or in the corners.
  2. The question of how to get rid of mold in the house, has long been troubling construction companies. Chemical laboratories are produced in their laboratories, which need to be treated not only by affected surfaces, but also by nearby ones. However, it is still worth combating with softer, folk, antiseptics. If the case is not running, there will be enough of them.
  3. Without regret, throw things that have been hit by mold.
  4. Carefully ventilate the room from the smell of fungus and chemicals.
  5. To monitor the humidity in the room, in time to eliminate its sources. This is especially difficult to accomplish in a private home.

Furacilin can significantly alleviate the fight against mold stains

Universal folk remedies

You can try to get rid of mold in the room with affordable and relatively harmless folk antiseptics. Even familiar from childhood furatsilin and peroxide will be reliable assistants. It is easy to prepare antifungal solutions from them, you need to spend minimum funds, and you can do cleaning in a specially dressed gown and rubber gloves.

Here are a few recipes that you can use on different types of surfaces without harm to get rid of mold.

4 tbsp.l.borax, half a cup of white vinegar and 4 cups of warm water, mix to a uniform consistency and spray the spray with a solution of the surface of the apartment. After 10 minutes, carefully wipe dry thoroughly and repeat the procedure for removing the fungus with the antiseptic again.

On the same 4 cups of water — half a glass of bleach. All is thoroughly mixed and applied to painted walls and other smooth surfaces, such as tiles or lining. Wipe, apply again for 5-10 minutes and wipe again.

Wipe off the surface vinegar several times with an interval of 1 hour.

Hydrogen peroxide in 3% variant works perfectly on the fungus and is sold in any pharmacy.

Antiseptic has bleaching properties, it is worth considering this when applying.

Unlike previous antifungal folk recipes, this solution is advised not to try to completely wash off the surface. And this is completely safe, since it includes only water( 1 glass) and soda( 1 tsp).Remaining on the walls, soda for a long time can fight with mold.

A solution of furacilin, if done alone, will help against the fungus not worse. It is necessary to grind 10 tablets of pharmacy furacelin and dissolve in a glass of warm water. After this, thoroughly wipe the affected surfaces with liquid.

Folk remedies do not guarantee the removal of mold, but the probability of a positive result is great. It is better to spend extra time working with such harmless substances as soda or furatsilin than to breathe aggressive chemical preparations.

Features of work depending on the surface types

Before you get rid of the fungus on the walls, painted with paint, you need to remove the layer in places where the painting has gone cracks and hillocks. Otherwise, the disputes that are uniquely hidden there will soon appear again on the surface.

Much worse case with plasterboard and suspended ceilings. They are problematic to treat, as the surfaces are porous, and the fungus on the walls and ceilings penetrates deep inside. If the universal prescriptions do not give a result, and there is no possibility or desire to apply to specialists, it is necessary to replace the amazed part with a trivial one.

Wallpapers of any quality are often overgrown with fungus due to improperly performed repair work. It will not be possible to clean up, the wallpaper will have to be completely removed and processed under them by a porous wall.

The porous wall requires special attention, as it is a tasty morsel for fungi. The fight against the fungus on the walls begins with the cleaning of the surface by the spatula from the fungus and loose plaster, where spores could get into. Further, the whole surface is cleaned with sandpaper, including the previously cleaned areas, and the treatment with furatsilin solution begins. This must be done repeatedly, 5-6 times. And only after this, antiseptic and plaster are used.

Working with special tools

Since the mold is resistant to many antiseptics, the development of a fungicide for chemists is quite ruthless for the human body. Work with them is necessary, carefully following all the safety rules, including the construction respirator.

From the surface material depends, than to treat the walls from mold. Moreover, varieties of the fungus are treated with different chemicals. So, before removing the fungicide, carefully study the recommendations for its use and your walls. Having decided what to do with, you can clean much more efficiently and in less time.

Than to treat walls from a mold and how to remove a fungus that he has not come back again, experts well know. Of course, at home, you can solve this problem on your own, but turning to professionals will save you a lot of time and energy and save your health. Disputes flying in the air are toxic, and the dust of repair will not add to your health. Professionals can clean mold using protective equipment, performing all the stages of work correctly and at a fast pace.

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