Bathroom mold isn’t just unsightly. It can be quite harmful for your health as well. And, if you’ve ever lived in a house with a poorly ventilated bathroom, you’d know exactly what this mold looks like.
You can find bathroom mold hugging damp corners and crevices, the edges of bathtubs and sinks, the space between the tiles, and in some cases, even wet commodes. But, before we get to the ways by which you can eliminate it, it’s important to understand what causes bathroom mold and how it affects your health.
Causes And Repercussions Of Bathroom Mold
The cause of mold growth is dampness. It causes this type of fungus to multiply, often in an uncontrolled fashion. Mold has been linked to several respiratory illnesses and is known to make asthma worse.
In fact, the unexplained sneezing and allergies you are experiencing right now could be attributed to mold.1 Thankfully, there are ways to eliminate bathroom mold.
6 Ways To Prevent Bathroom Mold
1. Clean All Damp Surfaces
It’s important to wipe all wet surfaces in the bathroom every day. Once you do, leave the bathroom door open to provide ventilation. Drying of surfaces is so effective (when it comes to fighting mold) that it is recommended even when a place is flooded and is being cleared up.2
2. Get A Dehumidifier
Sometimes, the problem is not just with damp surfaces, but with the general humidity in the house. If you notice a musty smell when you enter the house, there’s probably humidity in the walls and ceilings.3 This could promote mold growth, so getting a dehumidifier might be a good idea.
3. Use Raw Vinegar
An easy way to keep mold away is to wipe down all surfaces in the bathroom with raw vinegar (like apple cider vinegar). This is because raw vinegar is fermented, and is believed to contain a species of lactobacillus bacteria that can help fight off mold and the toxins it produces. One way by which it does this is by creating an acidic pH which the mold cannot survive in. However, there’s very little evidence to support this method, so you might want to try this method only as an experiment at first.4
4. Contain The Area
Sometimes, mold takes over to such an extent that you might be left with no option but to cordon the area off and treat the mold. In this case, one should stop using the bathroom in question and close all the water inlets to it. The mold can then be removed with natural sunlight, bleach, or a professional treatment until it disappears.5 Remember, sometimes it might look like the mold has cleared up to the naked eye, but spores last a long time. Hence, it’s important to first identify why that particular bathroom is susceptible to mold growth and fix the problem before using it again.
5. Use Paint With Bioactive Compounds
Zinc Salicylate and Zinc Benzoate are two compounds which, when mixed with wall paint, are believed to fight off mold very effectively. These chemicals, called bioactive compounds limit the growth and “colonization” of fungus. While sourcing this paint is difficult, you could give it a try if all else fails.6
6. Try Essential Oils
Is there anything that essential oils can’t do? Oils of thyme, cumin, and caraway are believed to be extremely potent anti-fungal agents. They might fight off mold and reduce the effects of toxins produced
Getting rid of mold in your bathroom can seem difficult, but it isn’t impossible. All you have to do is choose the treatment that works best for you, depending on the intensity and cause of the problem.
|↑1||Clark, N. M., H. M. Ammann, B. Brunekreef, P. Eggleston, W. J. Fisk, R. Fullilove, J. Guernsey, A. Nevalainen, and S. G. Von Essen. “Damp indoor spaces and health.” Washington, DC: Institute of Medicine of the National
|↑2||Committee on Environmental Health. “Toxic effects of indoor molds.” Pediatrics 101, no. 4 (1998): 712-714.|
|↑3||Block, S. S. “Humidity requirements for
|↑4||KARUNARATNE, ANJANI, ELENORA WEZENBERG, and LLOYD B. BULLERMAN. “Inhibition of mold growth and aflatoxin production by Lactobacillus spp.” Journal of Food Protection 53, no. 3 (1990): 230-236.|
|↑5||Adan, Olaf CG, and Robert A. Samson, eds. Fundamentals of mold growth in indoor environments and strategies for healthy living. Springer Science & Business Media, 2011.|
|↑6||Bellotti, N., L. Salvatore, C. Deyá, M. T. Del Panno, B. Del Amo, and R. Romagnoli. “The application of bioactive compounds from the food industry to control mold growth in indoor waterborne coatings.” Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces 104 (2013): 140-144.|
|↑7||Farag, R. S., Z. Y. Daw, and S. H. Abo‐Raya. “Influence of some spice essential oils on Aspergillus parasiticus growth and production of aflatoxins in a synthetic medium.” Journal of food science 54, no. 1 (1989): 74-76.|