Summar heat comes earlier this year, so is humidity. Along with these, there is a lurking menace waiting to show its face if you aren't careful -- mold!
What is mold?
As nature's recycler, mold are fungi that can be found both indoors and outdoors. Mold comes in thousands of varieties, and grows best in warm, damp, and humid conditions. Spread and reproduce by making spores that can survive harsh environmental conditions, even in dry conditions, which just do not support normal growth.
How mold affects health?
Molds release toxins that can cause headaches, nose bleeds, hair loss, chronic fatigue, respiratory issues, and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Individuals can develop asthma and mold allergies from long-term exposure. Mold, alive and dead, can have serious effects on your health.
How to prevent mold?
1. Always make sure to clean up any large spills of water as quickly as possible. Mold is likely to grow if areas are wet for 24-48 hours
2. If you have a pipe break or flooding, repair and dry all items as soon as possible
3. Maintain an indoor humidity level of 30-55%; buy a hygrometer to monitor easily at home
4. Install dehumidifiers to help you achieve healthy humidity levels
5. Use a HEPA vacuum instead of a standard vacuum - HEPA filters trap particulates (including PM2.5), allergens, mold spores and dander that can cause or lead to the development of allergies
6. Move furnishings at least five centimeters from the wall- furniture pushed up against the walls can propagate mold growth due to lack of air circulation
7. If you have drapes, make sure they are shorter so that they are not covering too much of the wall
8. Use exhaust/ventilation fans when cooking/ showering/ bathing, etc.
9. Check drainage (especially on balconies) regularly and clear blockages to prevent flooding during rainy periods
10. Open your windows and let in some fresh air two to three times a day for 20-30 minutes each time during good outdoor PM2.5 conditions