Waking up on a cold the morning to see water streaming down your windows can be concerning. This condensation is usually formed during the night when moisture in your breathing comes into contact with the cold glass of your windows and forms droplets of water. Condensation will normally dry out over the course of the day, but it can soak into nearby surfaces, and while the condensation itself does not pose a risk to your health, it can develop into other problems in your home that may affect you in the future.
If you are wondering whether condensation is bad for your health, you may be surprised. Condensation itself is just water. Warm air can hold more moisture than cold air, so when warm, humid air comes into contact with a cold surface, the water is released and forms into droplets. The moisture in the air of our homes comes from many different household activities such as bathing and cooking along with breathing. During the night, when our houses cool, more of that moisture is released by the air and condensation forms.
On non-porous surfaces like windows or tiles, condensation will simply remain visible and can be wiped away, however on wood or plaster, the moisture from condensation can be absorbed into the material and over time will create a damp problem. Damp patches, where the material becomes saturated create an ideal environment for moulds to thrive. It is this damp and mould that can cause health problems.
Living in a home affected by damp can cause physical harm to the health of people with weak immune systems and is also associated with poor mental health.
A damp home will often be cold and creates an environment where mould, bacteria and dust mite populations can grow. Dust collects more easily in damp areas and creates the right conditions for dust mite numbers to increase. These tiny creatures consume household dust, and their waste is an unpleasant allergen that can affect people with asthma and other respiratory conditions.
Moulds are one of the most common lifeforms on the planet. Their spores can survive for long periods and are light enough to be carried large distances in the air and are part of the dust that collects in our homes. In dry conditions, mould spores are inert, and while they are relatively large in number, they are not usually concentrated enough to become a risk to health.
If spores settle in damp areas, they can begin to grow and develop into colonies of mould that are visible as slimy black or dark green patches on walls and ceilings.
There are many different species of mould in our homes, and not all are harmful, but under the right conditions, a species called Stachybotrys Chartarum, known as Toxic Black Mould, can thrive.
The spores from Stachybotrys Chartarum are an irritant and can affect the airways causing breathing difficulties and exacerbating other health problems such as asthma.
If black mould is growing in your home, it is important to remove it as quickly as possible. Toxic black mould should be treated by a professional to prevent it being inhaled when cleaning is undertaken.
Removing condensation from your home stops damp and mould becoming a problem. The most effective means of preventing condensation is through improved ventilation. Modern extractor fans in bathrooms and kitchens can prevent condensation from spreading around your home. If you are concerned about the health risks that mould and damp can create in your household, please contact us today to book your free home survey. Our local ventilation specialists can measure moisture levels in your home and recommend the best solution to get rid of condensation forever.
One of our local experts will contact you to learn more about your problems, offer free expert advice and make recommendations for a permanent solution.
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