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Kissing Disease

The "Kissing Disease" is also known as Mononucleosis (Mono) or Glandular Fever. It's caused by the Epstein-Barr Virus, and it's symptoms include severe fatigue, fever, swollen tonsils and enlarged glands. The disease is very common in children and young people, and up to 90% of the population may have had it at some point, most without knowing it.

It's knowns as the "kissing disease" because of the belief that it's spread purely by kissing, or actually caused by kissing. The fact that the disease occurs most often in adolescents (who may have recently started kissing others) added to the myth. It does have an element of truth in it; one can income infected through saliva, so kissing can be a culprit. However, coughing, sneezing and touch are also methods of spreading the virus.

After a person has been infected, the virus stays in their system for the rest of their life. Thus, adults may be responsible for infecting their children.

There are no drugs available to treat the disease. At present the recommended advice is for the individual to drink fluids and get plenty of bed rest.

Other Diseases That Can Spread Via Kissing

Kissing someone who has a cold will make you susceptible to contracting their cold virus. The same goes for influenza, measles and meningitis.

You can become infected with the herpes simplex type 1 (coldsore) virus by kissing someone who has the virus. The sexual version of the herpes virus (type 2) can be transferred through kissing if there is mutual oral sex involved.

In very rare cases, STDs such as gonorrhea, syphilis or chlamydia can be transmitted via kissing, however there would need to be oro-genital contact for this to occur.

If in doubt, remember that it's always best to wear a condom or use a dental dam.

Kissing does NOT transmit AIDS or HIV, Hepatitis B or cancer.


The Kissing Book: Everything You Need to Know
by Tomima Edmark
Is your kissing up to snuff? In this informative and entertaining guide to one of our favorite activities, Tomima Edmark indeed shows you "everything you need to know," plus quite a bit that you don't--all of it interesting. The section titled "Prelude to a Kiss" is filled with amusing facts and statistics; "Kissing Fundamentals" answers age-old questions such as "Eyes open or closed?" and "Where do the noses go?"; and "Kissing As an Art Form" is a guide to osculatory refinement for the more advanced kisser.

365 Ways to Kiss Your Love: A Daily Guide to Creative Kissing
by Tomima Edmark
This is a refreshing, clever gift book for everyone who kisses, has been kissed or wants someone else to think about kissing.

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