Cameroon: Mildew - Surviving With Mold

Most Douala city dwellers have developed different strategies to cope with the condition.

The phenomenon of mold or mildew affecting walls, dresses, shoes and other household gadgets is on a steady increase in the Douala as the rainy season persists. It's an all-too-common problem in any area of the home where moisture levels tend to be high: splotches of mold growing on the walls or ceiling.

While mold can sprout anywhere along a wall, it's most often found either up high near the ceiling, down low near the floor, or creeping along edges of trim or baseboards. It also affect dresses, shoes, handbags, carpets bathrooms with frequently used showers or tubs, damp basements, kitchens, or laundry rooms and other household gadgets. This frustrating and potentially hazardous problem is most common in homes in Douala. Mold occurs when places are damp, ventilation is poor, and temperatures are high. A Douala city dweller recounts how he lost a good per of shoes as a result of mold and mildew, "the situation is very frustrating, I hardly find my size of shoe since my feet are very long, the only pair I depend on got bad as a result of mold, the shoe was sent to me by my cousin from abroad".

As a result, most city dwellers have derived strategies to survive with the condition. "I have removed all my dresses from my wall rope and air at the balcony. I will continue like this every day until the rains are over", recounts Odette Yemelong. Mr J.P. Kwedi, a teacher, said he has installed a 60 megawatt bulb in his wall rope so as to keep it warm all the time. "I had a very bad experience two years ago as almost all my dresses and shoes got bad as a result of mold. Since then I have instructed my wife to always air most of the things in the house. It has been working for me this far."

Faced with this condition, expert advised that people should mix bleach or undiluted vinegar and spray in the moldy areas of the wall. But then while bleach works well to kill surface fungus and remove the ugly marks on the walls caused by mold, it doesn't penetrate deeply into the drywall. More so leaving doors and windows can be of great help.

More From: Cameroon Tribune

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