Microscopic view of moulds on rotten fruit

What is mould?

Generally neglected by some homeowners and tenants, mould exposes the inhabitants of a house to various infections. Preventing mould is essential if you want to protect yourself from its ills.

Couramment appelé champignon, cet organisme que l’on retrouve dans la nature fonctionne comme les plantes ordinaires. Il a besoin d’aliments et d’eau pour favoriser sa croissance, parmi lesquels on retrouve l’hydrate de carbone, à l’instar du bois et de la cellulose.

La croissance des moisissures est particulièrement rapide dans les zones humides appelées mycélium et sa reproduction se fait par la formation de spores.

Diseases caused by moulds

Like pollen, moulds are airborne and can cause respiratory problems if you inhale them. People with weakened immune systems are most susceptible to these infections. The toxins produced by mould cause a number of diseases:

  • Severe immune reactions that have a direct impact on the lungs and sinuses such as hypersensitivity pneumonitis.
  • Allergic diseases such as rhinitis and asthma.

A humid environment is conducive to the development of fungi, which is why it is recommended to use a air dehumidifier if your home regularly has a relative humidity of more than 60 %.

When does mould occur?

The blob, the extra-media | The night of the living #5 - The strength of a network: moulds

In cold climates, mould develops in late winter, late summer and early autumn, most commonly in late September. In warmer climates, mould spores are found at all times of the year, although they develop more in late summer and early autumn.

However, the growth of fungi and the spread of their spores can occur at any time, regardless of the climate. It most often depends on the humidity level in your home and the ventilation of the indoor air.

4 measures to reduce mould

If you want to limit the presence of fungi in your home and preserve your health, we recommend these preventive systems:

  1. Air your home daily: opening your doors and windows daily allows for proper renewal of the indoor air and promotes a good balance of relative humidity in your home.
  2. Reduce the number of plants in your home in winter and care for those that remain to prevent their leaves and soil from stimulating mould growth. Water in contact with wood is likely to encourage mould growth.
  3. Use dehumidifiers to better control the level of humidity in the home. Removing airborne water helps to eliminate mould problems.
  4. Repair water leaks in the bathroom, kitchen and cellar. Also ensure proper ventilation of wet areas.

Finally, if the proliferation of fungi in your home is too great and presents a proven risk to your health (asthma, allergies, etc.), we advise you to call in a professional. In addition to solving your moisture problems, it can help you eliminate fungus in your home.

Photo credit: Moldy fruit by ComputerHotline | CC BY 2.0.