Prevent mold buildup, keep illnesses at bay

Story and photo Story and photo by by Trecia Wilson USAG Bamberg Public Affairs

Every year as winter sets in, homemakers begin struggling with keeping mold growth to a minimum.
The damp conditions that come with the season make it prime growing season for spores that cause mold growth.

Molds reproduce by means of tiny spores that are invisible to the naked eye and float through the air.
Although not usually a major problem indoors, mold has the potential to cause health problems if left untreated.

The usual causes of growth are leaky roofs and pipes, and growth begins when spores land on wet surfaces.

Molds produce allergens (substances that can cause allergic reactions), irritants and, in some cases, potentially-toxic substances.
Inhaling or touching mold or mold spores may cause allergic reactions in sensitive

Mold loves poorly-ventilated rooms, leaky pipes, roofs and humidity above 60 percent. And it hates well-ventilated rooms and dry air below 60 percent.
According to the U.S. Army Garrison Bamberg Department of Public Works, there are steps you can take to prevent mold buildup in your home.

They include:
• Air out bathrooms thoroughly after taking showers or baths.
• Air out apartments thoroughly at least twice a day for 10 minutes. Windows need to be opened completely, not just slanted.
• Use a ventilation system when cooking and taking showers or baths.
• Prevent water damage by reporting leaking pipes to the environmental or housing office.