Insufficient insulation and poor ventilation in the home environment can cause mold to form on walls.
It is known that these fungi, which manifest as small dark spots that slowly grow larger, are damaging to your health, especially via the spores through which they reproduce and that disperse in the air, mainly in summer and fall.
As the World Health Organization recognized in 2009, molds can worsen or even cause asthma, allergies and upper respiratory diseases. In children in particular, prolonged exposure can lead to symptoms becoming chronic, while for the elderly there is the risk of developing or exacerbating respiratory disorders.
Mold can create toxins capable of altering the immune system, which is weakened from the prolonged inhalation of spores. Moreover, again according to the WHO study in Europe, there are humidity problems inside at least 20% of buildings, which naturally include not only private homes but also offices and schools.
This data highlights how important it is to prevent the formation of these harmful organisms. The first line of defense is to rely on proper insulation techniques, ranging from the choice of material to the methods of construction, such as the addition of an attic or crawlspace, or the application of an exterior insulation finishing system.
As the Italian Minister of Health notes, some simple practices can help limit mold formation on a day-to-day basis: air out rooms, allow as much sunlight to enter as possible, and avoid drying clothes in enclosed spaces.
Other than that, it’s a good rule of thumb to limit sources of condensation and to maintain an indoor temperature of 20°-22° C (68°-72° F) and a humidity level between 40-60%. Moreover, it is very helpful to clean refrigerator drawers, air conditioners, heaters and humidifiers on a regular basis. Other recommendations are to limit the number of plants in the home and avoid leaving standing water after watering, and not to use rugs or mats in high-humidity areas like the bathroom, kitchen or laundry room.