Never ignore damp, it could be the cause of hidden health problems. Microscopic mould spores can get into the airways and sinuses causing serious fungal infections, which are difficult to treat.

As part of Indoor Allergy Week (Nov 11 – 17) charity Allergy UK is warning that persistent symptoms of damp inhalation, such as wheezing, asthma, puffy eyes, sore throats, shouldn’t be left untreated as they may be due to unidentified fungal problems.

Allergy UK’s Director of Clinical Services, Maureen Jenkins says more people need to be aware of the link between damp in the home and allergies: “The impact of mould in the home is all too often underestimated.

“Mould can cause persistent allergic symptoms all year round but in the autumn we see more people suffering than at any other time of year.

 “There are practical steps people can take to reduce mould spores in their home, and we urge those with a continual damp problem in their home to seek further help.

Follow these practical tips to manage damp in the home:

- Moulds flourish in damp environments so prevent growth by keeping rooms well ventilated, with windows slightly open

- Thoroughly cleaning your kitchen, bathroom and utility room will help prevent mould growth

- Do not hang wet clothes inside or over radiators 

- Clean mould from window frames and always remove condensation

- Keep houseplants to a minimum and change the topsoil regularly

- Do not use humidifiers

- It is essential to empty, clean and dry the water reservoir of dehumidifiers daily

- Enclosed allergy bedding covers to protect you from mould spores within the mattress, pillows and duvets

- Carpet harbours house dust mites and mould spores.  

- Using an air purifier in the bedroom can help to trap airborne allergens

- If you rent your home and feel that damp might be damaging you or your family’s health, you should first contact your landlord. If you have further problems you should contact your local council.