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Keeping the Bathroom Fresh and Allergy Free

By: Corinna Underwood - Updated: 22 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
Bathroom Fresh Allergy-free Mold Mildew

Mold and mold spores are in the environment year-round, indoors and out. Although more prevalent in warm, humid climates, molds exist worldwide. Mold spores are the reproductive part of mold or fungus that cause allergic reactions. Molds feed off decomposing plant and animal matter and grow by producing filament-like clusters. Mold and fungi reproduce by giving off huge numbers of spores into the air, similar to plants releasing pollen. When airborne mold spores settle on organic matter, new mold clusters are grown. When mold spores are inhaled, they may trigger an allergic reaction.

Symptoms of mold allergies include:

  • Sneezing.
  • Chronic cough.
  • Runny nose.
  • Nasal congestion.
  • Itchy, watery and red eyes.
  • Skin rashes and hives.
  • Sinus headaches.
  • Reduced lung capacity and difficulty breathing.
Mold allergy symptoms may grow more severe with each successive allergen exposure, so it's important to reduce your exposure to airborne allergens. This type of allergy can also lead to asthma, especially in children, causing permanent lung damage.

The bathroom can be a perfect breeding ground for mold, if you are not careful. Mold and mildew growth is obvious when it grows in bathrooms along tile grout in shower stalls, but it also grows on shower curtains, bath mats, in sink cabinets and even on towels. Here are some tips to help you keep your bathroom fresh and allergy free

  • Use paint with a mold inhibitor, or add a mold inhibitor to standard paint for use in bathrooms.

  • Keep the bathroom door open whenever the bathroom is not being used. This will prevent build up of moisture-laden air and will allow fresh air to circulate.

  • Shower curtains and cubicles are hotspots for mold and mildew so wipe them down after each use with a ¼ cup of bleach in a gallon of water. If your shower curtain starts to show signs of mold, replace it straight away.
  • Keep your bathroom free of piles of wet towels.

  • Avoid wall to wall carpeting in the bathroom. Cover your floors with linoleum or tiles and use area rugs instead. Wash rugs regularly in temperatures at least 130 degrees.

  • Exhaust fans help remove moisture from the bathroom as well as odors. If you don't have an exhaust fan, open the window slightly.

  • Repair all water leaks promptly.

  • Use a dehumidifier to keep the relative humidity below 40 percent to deter mold growth.

  • Never leave damp clothing or towels in the bathroom.

  • Keep your drains smelling fresh and keep the pipes in good working order by placing ½ cup of baking soda down the drain and follow with 1 cup of vinegar. Let sit for approximately 10 minutes and flush with hot water from the tap. Repeat monthly.

  • Disinfect the toilet regularly and keep the toilet seat down when the toilet is not in use.

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