How does moisture affect mold growth?


Quick Answer

Mold grows abundantly and thrives in moisture. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, "Molds can be found almost anywhere; they can grow on virtually any organic substance, as long as moisture and oxygen are present." Mold is plentiful in humid climates and can grow indoors or in nature.

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Full Answer

Mold reproduces through microscopic spores and is very destructive. Once spores attach themselves to an object that has an adequate food source, they multiply and consume the host. Moisture control is essential to controlling the spread of mold spores. Mold thrives on porous surfaces such as wood, drywall and ceiling tiles and can grow on carpet and concrete. Simply cleaning the affected materials will not permanently solve the problem. Porous materials that are infected with mold should be removed and replaced with new materials. Detergent and bleach are effective mold killers, but the eradication of moisture discourages further growth.

These tiny fungi travel through the air, causing a wealth of health problems in humans. Mold exposure causes indoor allergies, respiratory irritations, asthma, pneumonia and skin rashes. Continued exposure to mold can cause a weakened immune system and fungus-related conditions, such as athlete's foot and yeast infections. Mold thrives wherever moisture is found, even if it is on the human body.

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