Asthma and Mould

My 7 yr old son has asthma. He has had it since he was 1-2 yrs old. He seemed to be growing out of his asthma when lots of mould started appearing in my bathroom and the bedrooms. I have the vents open all the time and the windows open when he is at school. Now his asthma has started getting bad again. He has just got over a chest infection and was on anti biotics for 5 days. I went to the drs to get a medical letter to give to the council and the dr said he would do it but said that mould really doesnt affect asthma. What is true and what to do????

9 Replies

  • Interestingly I am in a similar position! My son is 13 and has had asthma since he was a baby. It has never really been well controlled but since moving house last year he has been unable to come off Prednisolone and has spent most of the year on 40mg daily. We have rising damp and terrible problems with condensation and have black mould growing in the bathroom and our lounge on the outside walls and have another mould growth on one of our internal walls due to rising damp.

    He is under the Royal Brompton and they have me mould can affect asthma. I have also come across this article from the BBC about the link between mould and severe asthma.

    Hope you get some help from the council, it may be worth printing off the article and including it with your GP letter.

    Best wishes Nikki

  • Perhaps you could direct the doctor to the page on Asthma UK's site giving information on moulds & fungi as triggers for asthma - , one of their recommendations being: ""Ensure damp and mould in the home is treated quickly.""

    best wishes


  • insulation may be an issue

    Mould does have a big affect on asthma.

    The insulation in the house may not be of the required standard. Is the mould on the ceiling or the walls or on the window cill? Are the windows single glazed or older doubleglazing?

    Mould loves dampness. Where there is warm air and it comes in contact with a cold surface then the moisture in it condenses and soaks into the plasterboard (quickly) and timber (slowly).

    The area gets further heat from the room and the mould thrives in this environment.

    Unfortunately this is typical in our north/ western European climate.

    Just to note they now recommend 300mm insulation in attics....this is much more than a typical attic. This can contribute to the problem. The walls are a similar story depending on the construction method they may also lack sufficient insulation.

    Ventilation is great but physically the mould needs to be wiped down and killed off with a weak solution of bleach or other anti-fungal product.

    It will probably come back......repeat removal as its stubborn!

  • this is a great link I found last year, and dug out again.

  • My biggest trigger is mould from damp. Whenever I am in a damp building, my asthma gets much worse, quite fast. In fact, my asthma is a very good detector of damp in buildings and I once had to move away from a damp flat in Brixton. Mould is a well known trigger and should be recognised as such by health professionals and teachers.

  • Well, I think we all know that what your doctor is saying is simply not true. It is also one of my son's biggest triggers. We have mould that grows around our window trims - where the glass meets the wood. I go round the house each day wiping down condensation from the windows and then use those disposable anti-bacterial wipes to get off the any black mould. I know it's not very environmentally friendly to use them, but when you're doing something every day it's a right old pain faffing with clothes and rinsing off etc. If I make sure that I do it every day it stops it from growing back so bad. Good luck!

  • Thanx for all the replies. Ive printed off some stuff about mould and ive now changed doctors surguries. we have double glazing. i clean the mould regular but it keeps coming back

  • Not sure if this is relevant to anyone, but I am very allergic to potato mould. I always sneeze etc when peeling normal potatos for dinner. This year I had a large bag of potatos given to me and I left these in the kitchen for a few weeks in a sack, using them as and when - over this period my asthma was quite bad - really didn't put 2 and 2 together for few weeks, once I did I moved the sack outside and things and improved.

    Also tree mould is a big trigger for me espically in the spring months.

    Hope this helps ... you never know.



  • insulation condensation and heat in bedrooms

    AS you have double glazing (depends on age for effectiveness) then there is some issue with the heat/ventilation/insulation balance in the room. Orientation (north or east facing) can affect dampness as can older houses with poor or no insulation in the cavities. More attic insulation also makes a difference.

    What temperature do you heat the room to at night? Generally its healthier (and less condensation) to have a colder temp in the bedroom (16-18degrees) although the cold can also irritate peoples asthma especially if your child breathes through their mouth at night .

    Hard to win sometimes- some houses are just damp places with alot of condensation and it would cost alot to improve them.

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