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Is My Damp Bedroom Causing Health Problems?

Jul 25, 2018

by editorial team 

 

Bedrooms can feel damp and humid sometimes. When the outdoor humidity level is high, that makes sense. Temporary dampness comes and goes with the weather. But dampness that hangs around is likely caused by another factor.

Reasons for dampness in the bedroom

Dampness in the bedroom can be caused by several factors. Here are a few of the common causes:

  • Roof leak. Leaks from a roof can affect the dampness of a bedroom, especially if the roof leak is directly above the bedroom or the water has traveled along attic beams from another part of the house into the bedroom ceiling.
  • Plumbing leak. Water from plumbing pipes can leak without us knowing. Bedroom walls that have plumbing on the other side of a wall—such as a laundry room, kitchen, or bathroom—could be causing dampness in the bedroom.
  • Stale humid air. Air that is trapped in a home may not be able to dry out or dehumidify. Damp bedrooms can be caused by lack of fresh air, air circulation, and dehumidified air.
  • Ineffective gutters. Gutters can be too small, hung incorrectly, or full of debris that prevents them from working properly. In each case, water spills over the gutter edge and can sit next to the exterior wall, causing moisture to enter the house. Bedrooms that have an exterior wall can become damp.
  • Adjoining bathroom moisture. Bedrooms that had a bathroom attached can become damp due to the moisture created in the bathroom, such as hot showers and running water.

Health problems caused by dampness in the bedroom

Dampness in a bedroom can cause mold to grow on closet doors, woodwork, and flooring. Since the bedroom is the place where we sleep and our bodies recover (during sleep), mold in a damp bedroom can cause health problems.

Health problems and symptoms of mold growth include: (1)

  • nasal congestion
  • wheezing, shortness of breath
  • red, itchy eyes
  • red, itchy skin
  • asthma
  • allergies
  • mold infections

Conclusion

Dampness in bedrooms can be caused by a variety of factors—including a roof leak, plumbing leak, stale humid air, ineffective gutters, and moisture from an adjoining bathroom. This excess moisture can lead to mold development. Since the bedroom is the place where we sleep and allow our bodies to recover, having a damp bedroom with mold can create or worsen health problems—such as nasal congestion, allergies, asthma and mold infections.

For more information about how mold can affect health, visit the Center for Disease Control’s Mold FAQ page.


References

(1) Center for Disease Control

 

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