Damp ingress or mould occurs when warm moist air comes into contact with cold surfaces. In many cases, it can cause structural or aesthetical damage to a building, as well as potentially affecting your health. Damp generally happens for a number of different reasons. These can include a build-up of excessive moisture, under or overheated homes and poor ventilation. However, regardless of the reason, it is important that you seek the help of professionals before it becomes a health risk hazard for the entire family.
The dangers of mould ingress
Mould spores need a moist environment in which to germinate and grow. The issue here is that the exact environment that caused the damp ingress is the one that causes it to spread. Mould has a number of potentially devastating effects on the human body due to the allergens, irritants and, sometimes, toxic substances that the spores produce. Although long-lasting health problems can be irradiated with proper hygiene methods, there are a number of ways these spores can immediately affect you and your family.
1. Allergic reactions
The spores given off can cause mild to extreme allergic reasons in different individuals. The signs of these are usually easy to spot. They include excessive sneezing, runny noses and, in some cases, a skin rash. These symptoms will usually ease once the damp ingress or mould has been cleared. However, it is important to note that mould-related allergic reactions can be more concerning for babies, the elderly and anyone suffering from existing medical conditions.
2. Asthma attacks
For those suffering with long term respiratory issues including asthma, mould spores can be a trigger. When inhaled, they can cause an inflammation of the airways and construct the absorption of oxygen through the lungs. For asthma suffers, this has the potential to lead to extreme attacks and even hospitalisation in the worst cases. Keeping your windows open and allowing fresh air into your home is vital when it comes to avoiding these scenarios.
3. Eye irritation
Many of us suffer with sensitive eyes and mould spores can aggregate these further. In most cases, these reactions are a result of someone coming into contact with the mould spores and wiping them into the eye. Common symptoms include red eyes, blurry vision, a burning sensation, inflammation or light sensitivity. In some cases, mould in the eye can result in more serious eye infections and even long-term visual impairment.
The most effective way to protect your health when it comes to damp is by removing it and solving the initial problem. Try to maintain a constant temperature in your house. Ventilate your home regularly by opening windows and ensuring appliances, like washing machines, are plumbed in correctly. Consider using a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture from your home.
Once the cause of your mould has been identified, these steps will help you to minimise issues in the future. And, you’ll protect the health of both yourself and your family in the process.