Household moulds are microscopic fungi that grow on damp areas often caused by indoor flooding and leaking pipes or roofs. As they spread, their spores become airborne making people more susceptible to potential health issues.
The usual health problems are skin irritations, headache and respiratory infections. But repeated exposure to moulds can lead to more serious health problems, like diarrhoea and impairment of the immune system.
In addition, a study said that people living in damp and mouldy homes are at a possible risk of depression and here’s why.
A Proven Myth
Brown University Epidemiologist, Edmond Shenassa, and his team originally conducted a study to disprove the link between moulds and depression. Surprisingly after assessing over 5,000 respondents, the results suggest that people who live in damp and mouldy homes show symptoms of depression, such as sleeping problems, low self-esteem, poor appetite and lesser interest in activities.
A Possible Connection
Apart from unemployment and living in crowded areas, Shenassa said that the risk of depression went up about 40% among people who live in mouldy homes. They find that there are two factors that can possibly link depression and moulds. First is the frustration to get rid of the moulds in their homes and the second is relevant health problems, like fatigue and cold. He further that it affects their mental health when people are sick from moulds and feel unable to remove them.
A Case of Which Comes First
The researchers are conducting a follow-up research as they believe the results are still inconclusive. It is possible that people who are already depressed cannot clean their homes provoking mould growth. Shenassa even stated that once people see and smell mould in their houses they should immediately remove it. And if manual cleaning will not work, a professional cleaning company has the better tools to remove the moulds.
Prevention is Always Better than Cure
Clean up any leaks or floods within two days and make sure the areas are completely dry. If a small patch of mould appears, scrub it off with detergent and water containing natural tea-tree oil or apple cider vinegar. In removing moulds, protect parts of your body that have chances of exposure such as eyes, nose, hands and arms. Lastly, discard any items that are full of moulds and never try to cover moulds with paints or wallpapers.
Many studies continue to prove the connection of moulds to mental health problems. And before it becomes definite, maintaining a clean home will give you a happier and healthy atmosphere.