What do we do about it? - Identify the source of the moisture and stop it. Most damp is due to condensation, but you should also check for broken guttering or leaking downpipes and pouring water down the outside wall when it is raining. The damp could also be caused by leaking internal pipes.
Small amounts of damp could be superficial but don’t just paint over it. Much of mould is invisible so use a disinfectant - many supermarket's sell disinfectants based on bleach that are very effective for removing & killed fungi. NOTE recent research (2017) has suggested that cleaning products containing quaternary ammonium salts (which includes many disinfectants sold for domestic use) and bleach can increase the risk of COPD in people who use it regularly. Ventilate well and use waterproof gloves if using any of these disinfectants. If you are sensitive or have aspergillosis/asthma, don’t clean items & walls yourself and ensure the room is well ventilated to dry it out. Paint with a mould resistant paint.
Large amounts of mould growing throughout material – use a professional company to clean and replace material – get a recommendation through an ISSE Surveyor (www.isse.org.uk).
How do we stop damp recurring? – prevent moisture accumulating, ventilate until dry. Most damp is condensation caused by lack of ventilation. Ventilate more to remove moisture – open windows, install vents, make sure vents are clear. Remove/reduce sources of water in the air – open windows when showering/boiling water in the kitchen, dry clothes outside or in a vented dryer. New homes can have very little airflow. Older homes with fireplaces may need to have their natural vents restored. Anti-mould paint can be useful
What health problems can occur? Those with asthma & allergic aspergillosis and sinusitis may find some symptoms worsening – it is worth keeping moulds out of your home!