A little dampness in your home can quickly turn into mold if it is not managed. Damp walls, ceilings or floors can be unsightly in appearance and can cause damage to your interiors. It can also result in health difficulties, particularly when mold starts to grow in the damp environment. If you have spotted signs of damp or mold in your home, you needn’t worry; it can be treated.
What is Mold?
Damp in the home can be difficult to avoid. Water comes from a wide range of sources, from the steam in your shower to the condensation on your windows. Unfortunately, dampness can also be caused by moisture in the structure of your building. Mold is a type of fungus which thrives on damp environments. It is usually dark in color, either green or black, and has a distinguishable odor. If you begin to see or smell signs of mold, it’s time to take action.
Health Issues Linked to Mold
Household mold can have an adverse effect on your health or can aggravate existing conditions. Asthmatics may have increased breathing difficulties and those with an already compromised immune system, such as the elderly, can get sick with continued exposure to mold. It can also result in skin conditions and may exacerbate conditions such as eczema.
How Can I Treat It at Home?
Dampness should not be treated with bleach if it is on your walls or floors as the water mixed in will cause the damp to spread. Instead, try to dry it out by heating your home more frequently and using ventilators on your window to prevent moisture building up.
Mold should be cleaned with caution as it can result in health issues. Wear protective clothing and seal off the area with sheeting as spores can spread to other rooms. Clean off the mold with a stiff bristled brush or a sponge if it is mild. Specialist disinfectants can be bought for use afterwards and an anti-microbial spray can prevent regrowth. Keep in mind that if the damp or mold was on your floors or walls, you may have to redecorate. Take some preventative measures beforehand.
How Can I Prevent It?
Dampness and mold can be prevented by taking a few simple precautions. Ensure that your home is well-ventilated by opening the windows regularly, particularly in the bathroom and kitchen where there is likely to be steam. Invest in a dehumidifier to prevent water from condensing on your windows and ensure you clean up any water that does reach your windows. If the damp was on your walls, give them a coat of damp sealing paint before you redecorate over them again to prevent it from seeping through. This works best where there was only a mild damp problem.
Preventing and cleaning damp or mold will stop it from spreading and becoming a more difficult problem to deal with. Mold has toxic strains which may require a professional to tackle, so a little DIY can help to treat the problem as soon as it occurs.