Q:

What causes mold to grow?

A:

Quick Answer

Mold grows when its spores float through the air and land on damp surfaces. Outdoors mold serves a natural function, helping to break down fallen leaves, twigs and even whole trees. Indoors, however, mold is capable of causing health problems for human beings.

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Full Answer

Mold only grows indoors when its spores, which are not visible to the naked eye, settle on wet spots.

Once a mold patch begins to grow, it produces allergens and potentially harmful mycotoxins. Those who are allergic to mold experience reactions ranging from sneezing to skin rashes after touching or inhaling mold or mold spores. Those who suffer from asthma sometimes experience asthma attacks in the presence of mold.

Mold is also capable of destroying objects, particularly wood and fabric, upon which it grows. One sign of mold is discoloration on ceilings and floors. Mold also tends to emanate a musty odor.

To remove mold, many people use household bleach, vinegar, baking soda and ammonia. However, removing mold is not enough to ensure it does not return.

The most effective way to avoid the growth of mold in a home is to control moisture by repairing plumbing and roof leaks, resolving drainage issues, creating sufficient ventilation and ensuring the home is sufficiently insulated.

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