Today let’s talk about the chances of getting herpes from kissing. Herpes is a virus that comes in many strains. Its two main strains are HSV-1 and HSV-2 that cause oral and genital herpes. The herpes simplex virus (HSV) infects the mucous and/or the skin membranes.
Causes of Herpes
Oral herpes is often caused by the HSV-1 strain, but in some cases, it originates from HSV-2 strain. In fact, 80% of oral herpes is as a result of HSV-1 while the remaining 20% arises from HSV-2.
Also, at least 75-80% of the world population carries either HSV-1 or HSV-2. Most individuals contract this type of herpes when they are kids. This often occurs when they receive an innocent kiss from a relative or friend.
But does it mean that you can get herpes when you kiss someone with herpes? What are the chances of getting herpes from kissing?
Herpes Outbreak/Transmission of Herpes
A person can contact herpes via direct contact of a broken skin (a break or cut) and the contagious area. Also, mucous membrane tissue (including genitals and mouth) can spread herpes.
There are a few days during the year when the herpes virus reactivates but doesn’t cause any symptom. This process is viral shedding, asymptomatic reactivation, or asymptomatic shedding.
If an individual is experiencing any symptom, chances are if you kiss that person you will get herpes. Thus, it would be advisable to abstain from kissing or performing oral sex with that person. That’s until the signs have gone and the skin has healed.
Use A Barrier To Prevent Transmission
Most people have oral herpes. And there are many herpes dating sites on the web. It’s thus not advisable to stop receiving or giving affection during the outbreaks. Instead, you can use a barrier when kissing or performing oral sex. These barriers include a condom or dental dam.
You should also use a barrier even if there are no symptoms around the mouth. That’s because its symptoms aren’t limited to that lips alone.
Some symptoms can appear inside or on the nose, on the cheek or chin, and between the upper lips. Chances of getting herpes from kissing in these instances are high. Here the individual can get oral-facial herpes. This also calls for the use of a barrier.
Can you get herpes from kissing someone without an outbreak?
Genital and oral herpes remains in the body for life and transmitted when there is an outbreak. Additionally, all people who have herpes will have a “shedding” period. There are no signs of herpes during this period but they can still spread it.
But, it is impossible to know when shedding occurs for every individual. You cannot also tell how contagious they are and how much they shed. Thus, if you kiss someone who has had symptoms before, there is a chance that you will get this virus.
But you should note that you are less likely to get herpes if you kissed a person when there is no outbreak.
Chances of getting herpes from kissing increase when there is an outbreak. They decrease when there is no outbreak. But, whether there is an outbreak or not, you can still get herpes when you kiss a person who has it.