Mold can get into a building through open doorways, windows, vents, and heating and air conditioning systems. Mold in the air outside can also attach itself to clothing, shoes, bags, and pets and can be carried indoors. Mold will grow in places that have a lot of moisture, such as around leaky roofs, windows, or pipes, or flooded areas. Mold grows well on paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, and wood products. Mold can also grow in dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation, drywall, carpet, and fabrics.
Indoor mold (fungus) is very common in humid areas and in homes that have damp areas such as basements. Mold may trigger asthma symptoms, such as wheezing or coughing, or another allergic reaction, such as the rash of atopic dermatitis or stuffy nose of allergic rhinitis. Substances that trigger these reactions are called allergens.
Although there is no strong evidence that reducing damp areas in homes or limiting exposure to them helps reduce allergy and asthma symptoms, taking the following steps may help keep mold out of the house or limit its growth.
Adults spend one-third of their time and children spend half of their time in their bedrooms, so it is important that you take steps to prevent allergens in this room.
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Other Works Consulted
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2009, updated 2012). Facts about mold and dampness. Available online: http://www.cdc.gov/mold/dampness_facts.htm.
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Rohit K Katial, MD - Allergy and Immunology
Current as ofMarch 12, 2014
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