Posted on: January 5, 2020 at 6:39 pm
Last updated: July 13, 2020 at 2:54 pm

The home war against mold is never-ending, and rightly so with all of its harmful effects. Mold, particularly black mold which is a term covering numerous types of fungi that look black or dark green, thrives in warm and moist environments. The perfect “garden” to grow mold can be in toilets, baths, showers, kitchens, and basements, or even on wood, dirt, or paper. 

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Many kinds of black molds are toxigenic, which means they release toxins that can irritate or harm those with preexisting conditions. High amounts of mycotoxins can cause mold poisoning in healthy people, depending on how much mold is present and how long people are exposed to them. 

Mold poisoning symptoms can include:

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  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Itchy or red eyes
  • Itchy skin
  • Nose stuffiness

Those who already suffer from allergies, asthma, and immunity disorders may suffer from more severe forms of these symptoms, like:

  • Headaches
  • Exhaustion
  • Frequent coughing
  • Allergic reactions
  • Chest colds
  • Fever 
  • Sinusitis
  • Difficulty breathing [1]

Long term exposure to mold can worsen symptoms even if they don’t show immediately.

If you suspect that you are suffering from mold poisoning or allergies, see your doctor, you may have to do a blood or skin prick test. Treatment usually includes nasal sprays, allergy shots, and medications for allergic reactions and clearing mucus.

As with many things, the best kind of treatment is the preventative method. Cleaning regularly, especially in areas that are often wet, opening windows for ventilation, using dehumidifiers, and addressing leaks as soon as they occur are easy ways to stop mold from forming. [2]

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When it comes to cleaning, or specifically, cleaning mold, the method doesn’t need to be costly or complicated. Here are seven quick home remedies for mold:

7 Home Remedies for Mold

1.Vinegar

Vinegar is a mild all-purpose cleaner that works on silver, soiled clothes, and of course, mold. If you can find it, try using a cleaning grade vinegar. This type is 20% stronger at 6% acetic acid when compared to the regular stuff. Vinegar has actually been shown to help kill 82% of mold species [3]

While vinegar is relatively harmless, some may want to use rubber gloves when handling it often. Using vinegar is simple, simply fill a spray bottle with it and you’re ready. Spray the affected area until it is damp but there’s no need to saturated it. Allow the vinegar to sit for a few hours then wipe the area clean. The mold should be removed easily. For more stubborn spots, scrub the area with a brush then wipe the area away. [3]

Cleaning grade vinegar smells even stronger than regular vinegar, so if this type of smell isn’t for you, try adding some essential oils to the spray bottle. Peppermint, lemon, or orange work well. 

2. Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is an antifungal agent that kills mold, even tough spots that vinegar doesn’t cover. Mix one part hydrogen peroxide to two parts water into a spray bottle while and apply to the affected area and let it sit for a few minutes. Peroxide can leave stains so be sure to wear an apron or old clothes while using it. [3]

3. Vinegar and Dish Soap

Dish soap is a versatile cleaning product that can beat mold and grime, especially when combined with vinegar and tea tree oil. 

In a spray bottle, add a half cup of white vinegar, one cup of water, 15 drops of tea tree oil (or another essential oil if preferred) and two tablespoons of dish soap. Spray wherever needed and leave it for five minutes before scrubbing the area, rinsing it with hot water, and drying it.

Please note, that some essential oils are not safe for pets. For instance, Tea tree oil can be a danger to cats and dogs if not properly diluted.  Small concentrations of 0.1-1.0% are considered safe.

4. Bleach

Bleach is a powerful disinfectant and is the recommended tool for eliminating mold by the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency. Be sure to wear safety gear while handling bleach, like rubber gloves and safety glasses. Open doors and windows and turn on the exhaust fan while using bleach to avoid inhaling bleach’s toxic fumes. If the bathroom has poor ventilation, use a respirator. 

Then mix one part bleach to two parts water and spray the mold stains. After the solution sits for a few minutes, scrub the area, rinse it, and allow it to dry.

5. Bleach and Baking Soda

While baking soda cleans, bleach disinfects, making the pair a powerful cleaner. Again, ensure the bathroom is well-ventilated while you use bleach, as well as wearing old clothes and safety gear. 

Pour two cups of baking soda into a container and add one cup of bleach, drop by drop until it forms a thick paste. Use a paintbrush to apply the paste to any moldy surfaces and cover the area with plastic wrap. After a few hours, remove the wrap and clean the dried paste. If traces of mold remain, repeat the process until they are gone.

Cleaning mold is never fun, but it’s important to maintain good health for you and your family. Besides, the satisfaction of a clean shower and tub will make the effort well worth it. [4]

Read More: Top 7 Natural Alternatives For Bleach and DIY Household Cleaner Recipes

  1. Tim Jewell. Black Mold Spores and More. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/black-mold-exposure#managing-mold June 1, 2018
  2. The Hidden Dangers Of Black Mold. Everyday Health. https://www.everydayhealth.com/healthy-living/healthy-home/hidden-dangers-black-mold/ November 15, 2017
  3. Melanie Lasoff Levs. 5 ways to kill mold naturally. MNN. https://www.mnn.com/your-home/at-home/stories/kill-mold-naturally-5-eco-friendly-ideas May 26, 2011
  4. Krystle Vermes. Does Bleach Kill Mold and Should You Use It? Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/does-bleach-kill-mold#nontoxic-alternatives November 21, 2019
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Sarah Schafer
Founder of The Creative Palate
Sarah is a baker, cook, author, and blogger living in Toronto. She believes that food is the best method of healing and a classic way of bringing people together. In her spare time, Sarah does yoga, reads cookbooks, writes stories, and finds ways to make any type of food in her blender. Her blog The Creative Palate shares the nutrition and imagination of her recipes for others embarking on their journey to wellbeing.

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