‘Harmless’ pink mould growing in your bathroom can trigger ‘deadly infections’ – 5 ways to get rid of it | The Sun
EVERY noticed a blush or peach coloured film in your grout, shower curtain or sink?
Many of us might dismiss the so-called 'pink mould' as harmless, or put it down to the soaps we're using.
But the slimy, reddish substance could cause infections, digestive problems and – in rare cases – pneumonia.
You might want to fetch your cleaning supplies.
Despite the name, the pink stuff you find populating the warm, steamy space of your bathroom isn't actually mould.
In fact, it's a bacteria causing the slimy buildup.
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The two most common bacteria causing pink shower mould are called Serratia marcescens and Aureobasidium pullulans, which thrive on mineral deposits, soap residue and the warm-to-hot and wet climate of your bathroom.
While they don't pose the same danger to your health as black mould, that doesn't mean you should let pink mould reign free in the space you use to get clean.
According to the Mirror, it can cause urinary tract infections (UTI), digestive problems and in rare cases pneumonia.
It can also cause infections if the bacteria gets into cuts or broken skin.
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Most healthy people won't be affected by Serratia marcescens or Aureobasidium pullulans you touch them while bathing or cleaning,as long as they don’t enter your body, Forbes notes.
This is why you should avoid touching your eyes or an open wound if you've come into contact with the pink pest.
But if your immune system is compromised Serratia marcescens in particular can cause complications and infections.
How do I get rid of pink mould?
Worry not, pink mould is surprisingly easy to get rid of on your own.
Once you notice telltale signs of the filmy substance, snap on your rubber gloves – and your face mask – and get scrubbing with the cleaning solution of your choice.
A bathroom cleaner will work, or you can use baking soda, bleach, liquid dish soap and white vinegar, according to Forbes.
Use a bristly brush, scrub vigorously at the affected areas including the floor and wall tiles of your shower, the grout between the tiles and your shower head—until the mould and stains are gone.
Then thoroughly rinse the areas with water until the solution washes away completely.
If you just can't seem to shift the pink stuff, or you also notice black mould brewing in your bathroom, it's a good time to enlist professional help.
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Once you've eliminated the bacteria from your bathroom, there are a number of steps you can take to reduce the chances of its frequent return.
- Keep your bathroom air as dry as possible by ventilating the space or turning on your extractor fan, if you have one – start it before you shower and leave it on for at least 20 minutes after to reduce the humidity
- Dry your shower walls and shower curtains after each use to eliminate excess water and moisture with a towel
- Use antimicrobial shower curtain liners and bathmats designed to keep away stains and smells caused by microbial growth
- Wash your shower curtain regularly with warm water
- Stay on top of your bathroom cleaning routine
Can damp and mould affect my health?
If you have damp and mould in your home you’re more likely to have respiratory problems, respiratory infections, allergies or asthma, according to the NHS.
Your immune system could also take a hit.
Those most vulnerable to the effects of mould and damp are:
- babies and children
- older people
- those with existing skin problems, such as atopic eczema
- those with respiratory problems, such as allergies and asthma
- those with a weakened immune system, such as those having chemotherapy
Moulds produce allergens, irritants and, sometimes, toxic substances.
Inhaling or touching mould spores may cause an allergic reaction, such as sneezing, a runny nose, red eyes and skin rash. Moulds can also cause asthma attacks.
If you've got mould in your home, it's important to find out what is causing the excess moisture so you can address it.
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