The Victorian Department of Health states:
- Mould associated with damp buildings can trigger nasal congestion, sneezing, cough, wheeze, respiratory infections and worsen asthma and allergic conditions.
- People with weakened immune systems; allergies; severe asthma; chronic, obstructive, or allergic lung diseases are more susceptible to these symptoms and other serious health effects. Source.
An excellent ABC article explains: Mould is a fungi, along with mushrooms and yeast, and is everywhere around us; in the air we breathe and in the dust around our homes. When mould reproduces it creates spores that are carried in the air. As an allergen, inhaling mould spores affects the body in the same way as inhaling dust mites or grass pollen. ABC Source
Action plan to get rid of mould
- Remove sources of damp and moisture, ventilate wet areas, mop up water asap.
- Clean off any visible mould - unfortunately, nothing beats elbow grease to actually scrub it away. You also need to clean it off several times with fresh water, being careful not to re-contaminate the area with the mould spores.
- Spray with clove oil and water mixture (see recipe below). Clove oil actually kills the mould, rather than a bleach that just masks the mould.
- Place a clove oil room sanitiser - either a DIY one such as soaking a piece of chalk in clove oil, or a ready made mould aroma gel in the mould-prone area. The clove oil will continue to kill mould spores circulating in the room.
How to clean mould with clove oil
- First clean the surface with a mixture of 4 litres of hot water, 1 tablespoon bicarb of soda and half a cup of vinegar.
- Mix a quarter teaspoon of clove oil (no more) per litre of water, put it in a spray bottle, lightly mist on. Leave for 20 minutes and wipe off. Spray again and leave. It will take 24-48 hours for the mould spores to dry and drop off.