Drying washing indoors can pose a serious health risk to people with weakened immune systems or severe asthma, doctors have warned.
Clothes draped on drying frames or warm radiators can raise moisture levels in the home by up to 30 per cent, creating ideal breeding conditions for mold spores.
Experts are particularly concerned about Aspergillus fumigatus spores, which can cause lung infections.
Drying clothes in homes increases the moisture level and entails an increased risk of asthma and allergies which are particularly dangerous for the youngest.
Aspergillosis is the name of a group of conditions caused by a fungal mould called aspergillus.
It usually affects the respiratory system (windpipe, sinuses and lungs), but it can spread to anywhere in the body.
Depending on a number of factors, the symptoms of aspergillosis can vary in severity from mild wheezing to coughing up blood. Someone with a weakened immune system is at greater risk of being more severely affected.
Aspergillosis is caused by breathing in small spores of aspergillus mold. Most people’s immune systems will quickly isolate and destroy the mold before it can spread to their lungs.
However, a person with damaged lungs or a weakened immune system is more likely to develop aspergillosis after breathing in aspergillus spores.
Aspergillosis isn’t contagious and can’t be passed between people or animals.
Source: NHS Choices
During the autumn and the winter months most people dry their clothes on the radiators. Although this is a relatively quick solution, it is wrong and it drags along a series of health problems. Namely, drying clothes on radiators leads to the evaporation of softeners and detergents and this increases the risk of allergens and allergy.
You always need to keep a bowl filled with water near the radiator. In this case the air will never dry up. When the air dries up, it negatively affects the respiratory tract. The mucous membranes become dry and then they attract allergens that cause a variety of infections.
A research, conducted by the Faculty of Architecture in Scotland, showed a connection between the poor quality of air, the irritation of respiratory organs and drying clothes on the radiator. Drying clothes in homes increases the moisture level for 30 percent and entails an increased risk of asthma and allergies which are particularly dangerous for the youngest.
The researchers said three-quarters of homes surveyed had moisture levels that could lead to dust mite growth and were at risk of increased concentration of mould spores. This reduction in air quality has been tied to asthma and other allergic conditions.
A study of 100 homes over the winter of 2011 revealed that 87 per cent dried their washing indoors in cold weather, with two thirds placing their laundry near heat sources like radiators.
This raised moisture in the home by 30 per cent on wash days and 15 per cent on average. The researchers said smaller, more well-insulated homes made it difficult for vapor to escape.
The symptoms of the infection are numerous: coughing, chronic fatigue, irritation of the eyes, throat and skin, headache or nausea.