A mother has revealed she is “scared” for her children’s lives as their family home is “overgrown with mold”.
Kay Anderson first moved into her two-bedroom property in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex a decade ago.
The 35-year-old mother, who suffers from asthma, said she noticed mold coming through the walls six months after moving in.
Over the next 10 years, the problem reportedly got worse and the mold had spread throughout the property in what Kay calls a “living nightmare.”
Carer Kay, who lives in the home with her husband Delroy, 36, and their three children, aged 17, 13 and four months, said she has contacted real estate agents on a number of occasions and said they just told her to “clean”. . the area weekly.
Kay now stays up at night worrying about her children. Feelings she says have worsened after hearing about Awaab Ishak, the toddler who tragically died of a respiratory illness caused by “widespread” mold.
The mother-of-three said: “How it affects me is one thing, but seeing what it does to my kids is a whole different ball game.
“I don’t sleep after hearing that mold has taken the life of this beautiful little boy [Awaab Ishak] and I worry it will cost me one of my children too.
“Do we have to be a statistic to be taken seriously and to be heard?
“It takes a toll on our overall mental health and we all have breathing issues.”
She added that her husband and son also have asthma, but are struggling to manage it with their inhalers.
Kay said: “I will definitely be seeing a doctor soon, our asthma nurse is aware but we have not seen her in person since Covid.
“I hear my son coughing all night, every night, and I wonder if this will be another trip to the hospital with an asthma attack.
“A few years ago his asthma was so bad that doctors discussed intubating him.
“Now my daughter suffers from headaches and nausea on a daily basis and my four-month-old baby has allergy symptoms.”
5 top tips against damp and mold at home
Asthma and Lung UK recognizes that mold can aggravate or trigger asthma symptoms in sufferers.
They share their top 5 tips to start fighting mold in your home today:
1. Open windows and doors to allow air to circulate. However, be wary of high pollen or air pollution days if these are triggers for you.
2. Try not to dry clothes indoors. If you have nowhere else to dry, open a window if you can.
3. Use extractor hoods in the kitchen and bathroom, or open a window when cooking or after showering.
4. Close the door of the room you are in when cooking or showering to avoid condensation in other rooms
5. Try to keep your home at a good background temperature so that all rooms never get too cold, at least 15 degrees
Kay said that while her children haven’t been to the doctor, she believes they’ve developed allergies to the mold as they all suffer from itchy and runny noses.
In addition to the mold, the mother-of-three claims the ceiling collapsed above her during her pregnancy in November 2021 due to a leak in an upstairs apartment.
The mother said that instead of fixing it, she was left in the living room with a bucket.
Now, Kay said, mold is spreading through the home and the family is unable to move due to low income and no new guarantor to secure another property.
She said: “The mold has spread throughout the property.
“My bedroom seems to be the worst as I don’t have any ventilation there.
“I kept getting told by real estate agents to wipe the mold off with bleach and water spray.
“But I can’t do that anymore because the mold is making my asthma worse and my chest is getting very tight.”
There is evidence that mold and fungi are a major trigger for asthma attacks and can worsen symptoms in people with other lung conditions.
A study published in 2012 found that young children exposed to mold at home were at an increased risk of developing asthma by the age of seven.
The mother said the family tops up between £500 and £600 in bills a month by leaving the heating on.
“It really weighs on us.
“We regularly struggle with bills, we had to go to the local blackboard twice.
“I feel like it’s taking control of our lives and I’m worried about the future.”
However, inspectors have said the mold is due to the tenant’s lifestyle and poor ventilation.
A representative for the estate agents said: “As well as having some basic advice on tackling lifestyle-caused condensation problems (which a year ago were a big part of the problem, as reported by a specialist dampness treatment company and local environmental officer). we hired another moisture specialist to take a fresh look at it in case new problems arose.”
In November, leading charity Asthma and Lung UK warned that mold and damp problems are getting worse as temperatures drop – amid fears the cost of living crisis could see more families affected.
They added that cold and flu viruses, which can cause respiratory infections, can also thrive in colder temperatures and poorly ventilated, humid environments.
Last year, two-year-old Awaab Ishak died of respiratory failure after being exposed to mold in his own home.
How moisture and mold affect my health
The NHS says the problem with mold is that it produces allergens (substances that can cause an allergic reaction), irritants and sometimes toxic substances.
If these are inhaled or get into the skin, it causes unpleasant symptoms.
First, these toxins cannot do any harm in small amounts. But when they’re constantly in the air, it starts to cause side effects.
People living in homes with mold are more likely to:
- have difficulty breathing
- respiratory infections
- Asthma, including asthma attacks
- problems with the immune system
www.the-sun.com/health/7637338/terrified-children-die-mouldy-home-living-nightmare/ I’m terrified my children will die in our mouldy home – it’s a living nightmare