Mold growth may be the last thing on your mind when you think of threats to your health and your home. However, inhaling or touching household molds - whether its the black spots on your shower curtain or white patches on the basement floor - can irritate the eyes, skin, nose, throat and lungs.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), mold is everywhere. It can enter the home through open doors, vents, windows and other systems. Mold outside can also enter the home by attaching onto clothing, shoes, bags and pets.
While it is impossible to prevent mold exposure, there are a lot of ways to control its growth. One important thing to note is that mold needs moisture, food and warmth to flourish. That’s why you can see it accumulating around leaks in roofs or pipes or where there has been flooding. It also grows well on organic products such as paper, cardboard or wood. It also thrive in paints, dust, fabric and furniture.
To control mold growth inside the home, follow these tips:
Eliminate moisture sources
- Check for leaks around pipes, sinks, air conditioning units, refrigerators and other sources of water, especially in the basement. Have them repaired if necessary.
- Empty and clean refrigerator drip pans promptly.
- Avoid leaving damp clothes in the laundry basket. Wash and dry them promptly.
- Do not carpet bathrooms.
- Most mold need 24-48 hours of moisture to begin to grow. Make sure to dry wet areas within the day to prevent mold growth.
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