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NC Department of Health and Human Services
NC Division of Public Health
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Indoor Environmental Quality

Moisture & Biologicals

The most important factor in the growth and spread of mold and other biological agents is moisture. Moisture problems indoors can result in the growth or amplification of biological and microbial organisms like mold, mildew, dust mites and bacteria. Exposure to these organisms can increase the risk of allergic illness, trigger asthma attacks, cause respiratory infections, or have other health effects. Common sources of moisture include high indoor humidity, plumbing leaks, structural leaks, and malfunctioning or improperly-sized heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. To remedy the problem, the source of excess moisture must be found and fixed, and contaminated materials must be removed and discarded if they cannot be thoroughly cleaned. Proper cleaning and building maintenance, especially moisture control, are essential in the control of mold and other biological agents.

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