Eczema problems with condensation

Condensation

Eczema problems can be further increased with poor ventilation in homes. The ventilation problems can cause condensation which can become a breeding ground for mould, especially black mould.

As a result of poor ventilation, the quality of the air in a room can deteriorate and stagnate, which may attribute to an increase in irritation to eczema.

The spores given off by black mould can cause irritation and at worst there are some stories advocating the carcinogenic effect of the spores. Where some people have developed cancer which they believe is due to ingesting and/or breathing in these spores.

What causes condensation to occur?

Condensation around windows generally occurs because the temperature inside the room is a lot higher than on the outside of the room for prolonged periods of time.

It's like your car on a cold morning where the warm air inside from driving the car the previous day, has turned to water when it's come into contact with the cold air outside.

What you can do for better ventilation?

The easiest option is to open windows on a regular basis, even on cold days, to allow the overly warm air to be cooled by colder air. This will keep the condensation from forming and therefore not create a breeding ground for mould.

Another option is to use trickle vents, which can come with some types of double glazing or can be installed by a professional window fitter.

The trickle vents provide the same effect as the windows without having to keep the window open. These tiny vents can be opened and closed with a little switch and provide the added security of not having to leave the windows open when you are not in the house.

Removing mould

Removing black mould is pretty straightforward, I use a mix of 10 parts water to 1 part of household bleach. I put this mixture into a spray bottle and sprayed the affected areas making sure I am wearing goggles and a mask.

I also make sure the room I'm cleaning is well ventilated at that time, by opening all windows and doors. Once I have sprayed the affected area, I leave it for 15 minutes and then with a damp cloth I wipe off the mould and water/bleach mixture.

In areas where the mould has spread to the walls, I first cleaned the walls with my water/bleach solution and using a mixture of 50% water and 50% PVA (wood glue), I apply this as a sealant, reducing any moisture coming through the walls. If the walls are a different colour to the standard white, I add a little bit of paint to the water/PVA mix, to match the colour of the room.

I'd like to thank Bill our builder friend, who told us about making our own sealant for a few pounds instead of buying the expensive ready made over hyped stuff from the DIY stores.

HEPA filter

Once the spores have been released they can end up on the floor, where just by movement in and out of a room, they can recirculate. This could be problematic if the room is used as a playroom by a child.

Flooring itself might not make a difference with carpets or wooden flooring not really being a determining factor in reducing the spores circulating.

Vacuuming will help but only if the vacuum cleaner uses a HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filter. This HEPA filter can trap the finer particles of dirt such as spores which vacuum cleaners without this filter may not be able to do.