Will Air Purifiers Help to Reduce Mould and Help Allergies?

Many people suspect that mould in their homes may be causing their health problems, others may find mould or musty smell in their homes unpleasant, but don’t believe it causes problems; they just want their homes to smell fresher and to have a clean indoors. What is the truth about mould? Is it a problem or a part of nature that we have to accept? If it is a problem, how much of a problem is it and is there anything to be done about it?

Some of the most frequently asked questions we receive from visitors to our website involve the issue of mould in the home. Most people understand the seasonal allergy problems associated with pollens, but are confused as to whether or not mould and mildew might be contributing to their asthma and allergy symptoms, or their poor health. The article below explores some of the issues of mould and possible solutions.
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Many people aren’t sure if air purifiers will help with reducing mould in their homes. Mould is a real issue that can cause health problems. The right air purifier especially when used in conjunction with a dehumidifier will most certainly help.

Mould spore size can range from 1 to 100 microns, Air purifiers will trap and kill these mould spores, the spores die inside a HEPA air purifier filter because it is a dry, sterile environment, mould requires dampness to live so if you also reduce the humidity level with a dehumidifier you will solve the problem. A good quality HEPA filter will remove airborne mould spores, if the mould is embedded and can’t be removed such as you may find in mouldy smelling basements, filters that also remove odours such as Blueair Smokestop air purifiers will be best.

In nature mould plays an important part in the decay of leaves and trees. So mould is good… outdoors! Moulds inside your home or workplace are not good. Airborne mould spores inside your home really become a problem when they land on moist or wet surfaces. Then they are free to reproduce via the production of tiny invisible spores, and rapidly increase to amounts which cause humans discomfort and even illness.

Mould particles are small enough to pass through the cilia in your sinuses and are too small to be easily exhaled, so they can become lodged in your lung tissue. In comparison, larger particles such as dust are usually caught by the cilia before they enter the lungs. (Some moulds, called mycotoxins are potentially very toxic). Thus moulds which are inhaled do cause allergic reactions in many people – generally in the form of runny or sneezing noses, red eyes, rashes, and the generally unwell feeling you get when you have a cold or suffer from hay fever. The reaction is often instant but sometimes may be delayed for hours. Asthmatic people can also have allergic reactions to the inhalation of mould. As is often the case, infants, children, and the elderly can be more greatly affected by mould inhalation than healthy adults.

Most mould spores range from 3-100 microns in size but some can be as small as 1 micron. When looking at air purifiers to handle mould, it is important to find one that takes out at least 3-micron size particulates or smaller. All the HEPA air purifiers can remove mould spores.

If you cannot entirely rid your home of mould, however, you can substantially reduce it. If your house is old, there is a greater potential for mould problems as anyone with a musty old basement knows. Newer, tightly built homes that don’t have good airflow can also be problematic. Office buildings, particularly older ones are often rife with mould.

Extensive water damage that has resulted in the significant growth of mould may require removal by a licensed contractor. Smaller, visible areas of mould should be cleaned up with household cleaners and the areas dried. However, the mould is often not visible because it is in hidden places. The mould may reside on a surface but when the surface is disrupted, the spores become airborne and begin to cause problems for people. The spores generally settle down in time but whenever they are disrupted they take to the airflow again. That’s where a continuously running mould air purifier can be of great assistance in getting a clean indoors. If you can’t entirely remove the mould or even find it, you can quickly and easily remove the airborne spores with mould air filters. If you allow the mould spores to remain floating around inside and they subsequently land in a wet area, the process begins again with the growth of new mould.

Mould air purifiers with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arresting) filtration systems are the most effective at removing the airborne spores. Mould spores don’t reproduce without moisture, very often a dehumidifier will also help to reduce the amount of moisture in your home and can be used in conjunction with air purifiers. When airborne mould spores are pulled into an air purifier, the HEPA filter traps them and they die. Mould does not reproduce in the filters since there is no moisture in air purifiers.

In conclusion, whenever possible, remove the mould completely, to prevent re-growth use a combination of dehumidifiers and high quality, HEPA filters such as Blueair air purifiers to continually absorb the airborne spores. These units are made to run 24/7 and actually work more efficiently when allowed to do so. This will greatly help in the reduction of mould spores in the airflow you breathe. Since mould does have the potential to slide right past the protective cilia in the body and end up in the lung tissue, it’s important to stop it before it has the chance to reach your nose, especially infants and children.

Author: Health Care on October 27, 2011
Category: Allergies

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