How serious is damp in a house?

Damp issues in homes can be fairly common, but are they dangerous? If you see damp or mould in your home you will probably be wondering if this will have any impact on your health or even your home’s structure.

First, let’s explain what damp actually is and the cause.

In simple terms, damp is unwanted moisture and water in your home. There are 3 types of dampness in properties: rising, penetrating and condensation. Each can have a different cause and solution.

If you start to notice wet patches on walls, condensation on windows or mould growth - this is a good sign you have some kind of damp issue.

What is Mould?

Mould is a type of fungi that grows best in damp and poorly ventilated areas, and reproduces by making spores.

Mould can be found both indoors and outdoors and can grow on a range of materials including food, furniture, fabrics, carpets, walls, paper, timber and plumbing.

Is Mould dangerous?

Being exposed to mould can cause health issues and make existing issues worse. The NHS has confirmed that if you have damp and mould present in your house, you're more likely to have respiratory problems, respiratory infections, allergies or asthma.

Damp and mould can also affect the immune system, which is not good if you already have a weakened immune system.

Who can be affected by mould?

We can all be susceptible to health problems from mould exposure, however the NHS has identified these groups to be the most sensitive:

- Babies and children

- Elderly people

- Those with existing skin problems, such as eczema

- Those with respiratory problems, such as allergies and asthma

- Those with a weakened immune system, such as those having chemotherapy

Mould exposure symptoms

If you have mould present in your home, some of the symptoms you may experience are:

- Allergic reaction: sneezing, a runny nose, red eyes and skin rash

- Asthma attacks.

- Respiratory infection - trouble breathing, a tight chest, coughing, and wheezing, fever, sore throat.

Preventing health issues related to mould

Homeowners: If you are a homeowner with damp issues in your property, the best thing to do is call in a professional to assess the issue. They will be able to confirm what type of damp is present and advise what solutions are available to you to remove the mould permanently.

Landlords: If you are a landlord of a property with damp issues, Under section 11 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, it is your responsibility to resolve mould issues caused by structural faults. Elite Damp Proofing can come out to see the property free of charge to confirm what is causing the damp and advise the best course of action to get rid of the mould.

If you have damp in your home this can be a serious issue if not addressed. Structural timber decay, damage to plaster, corrosion, health issues for those with asthma and respiratory problems, unsightly staining and mould growth are all problems you can face. Book your free damp inspection by calling us on 01422 351430. if you ignore the issue.