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Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

Oh no, have my dds been exposed to the cold sore virus?

(11 Posts)
QueenMolotov Tue 22-Dec-15 10:25:53

Also posting this in Chat for traffic.

Dds (nearly 7yo and 3-and-a-half yo) and I visited a relative yesterday who kissed them on the lips when we arrived (I don't like this but she insists). Relative suffers from cold sores but looked clear at that point yesterday. I obviously would never and have never let her kiss them with active cold sores.

About an hour or so later, I noticed that her lip looked sore; I asked but she said she didn't think it was a cold sore as she didn't feel any tingling.

I asked her this morning how she was, and the cold sore broke out overnight.

What chance is there that they've now caught the virus? Do I need to take them to our GP? I'm so upset sad

MooseAndSquirrel Tue 22-Dec-15 10:45:16

Nothing the gp can do for it I'm afraid.
DD1 caught the virus when really little of my selfish grandmother.
She breaks out now whenever she's run down the poor thing. I have a light treatment thing for it though and it works fab on her.
However I think some people are naturally immune as my mentioned GM, DM & DD suffer and I (touch wood) have never caught it. Hope ur DDs get lucky

Berthatydfil Tue 22-Dec-15 10:54:54

It's possible they may avoid it as the lesion wasn't active st the time. If they are lucky and avoid it this time I'm afraid I would risk offending the relative and insist on no lip kissing at all in future. I'm assuming mum or mil so some straight talking by you or dh is in order.
Tell your daughters they mustn't kiss that or any relatives on the lips anymore.
I know it seems rude but cold sores can be nasty. I'm somebody who had one years and years ago and has never had another since but I know not everyone is so lucky.
If you're worried and think it might break out over the xmas period see the pharmacist this week and buy some Zovirax or similar. You can also get little plasters to go over them.

KimmySchmidtsSmile Tue 22-Dec-15 11:02:39

I am sympathetic but I would also be relieved that your daughters have long as they wash their hands, don't scratch, touch eyes or genitals, it will go very soon...zovirax is fab, blisteze will help. They will now have the antibodies in their system so if they do ever have babies of their own, that protection will cross over to the fetus. Newborns who are exposed without their mums ever having had a cold sore hence no antibody crossover and it can be fatal

Willdoitinaminute Tue 22-Dec-15 16:48:42

The primary infection of the coldsore virus doesn't actually cause cold sores. It usually starts like most viral infection with high temp and general unwell feeling. Eventually you get lots of small mouth ulcers inside the mouth. I can remember the incubation period but if you google primary herpes simplex if will give you the low down. In order to get cold sores you must have had the primary infection in the past. Most of us have had it but it may have been mild or happened as an infant and gone undiagnosed. Only a small percentage of people who have had the virus will go on to get recurrent cold sores. It works in the same way that shingles does with chickenpox. The virus remains dormant in the nerve ganglions only causing infection when the immune system is low.

QueenMolotov Tue 22-Dec-15 18:36:28

Thank-you all so much for your replies. You have all been really informative and helped to calm me down about this. You are all what I love about MN. Thank-you for being so understanding. I will look up primary herpes simplex and look out for feeling unwell coupled with mouth ulcers.

The relative in question is my much-loved auntie; my dm's sister. She is basically another dgm to my dds, never had children of her own (not by choice) and therefore dotes on them. I will be gentle with her, but I will speak with her and there will be a new rule about no lip kissing, cold sores or not.

QueenMolotov Tue 22-Dec-15 18:47:26

I had a look at this ink{\]]l}, which says that the onset of primary herpes simplex has an incubation period of 3-6 days (especially for dd2, who is under 5yo)

If my children do not have a fever/mouth ulcers by Sunday or Monday (Monday would be 7 days later), does that mean they might have avoided it? Obviously, they may not present with symptoms, but I wonder.

Boomingmarvellous Tue 22-Dec-15 19:43:21

If they are free by then I would say they are free as they either have it and have symptoms of primary herpes simplex or not. They won't be harbouring as such. Primary HS is pretty horrible from the cases I've heard of though.

QueenMolotov Mon 28-Dec-15 19:45:56

Just an update to let you know that both dds have not shown any sign of primary herpes simplex (^thank heavens^). It's past the 3-6 day incubation period now.

We haven't seen my auntie since last Monday but she will be told when we next see her that this was a close shave; no more lip kissing.

Thanks again for your helpful replies.

nephrofox Mon 04-Jan-16 19:33:04

Glad they're clear this time

Just a question though - is avoiding lip kissing really enough? I wouldn't risk any kind of physical contact with someone with active cold sores to be honest - she could have touched her mouth seconds before she touches your children's hands etc. I would steer well clear.

QueenMolotov Mon 04-Jan-16 19:54:22

It is a nightmare! My aunt has a habit of putting her fingers in her mouth without thinking (e.g. nail biting, after eating, or to lick her finger to turn a newspaper page).

We saw her at the tail-end of last week when the cold sore had dried out, but was still present. I am aware that the 'virus shedding' process still takes place until it has completely disappeared. So, I feel that I constantly have to keep my eyes on her because I can't trust her to be rigorous enough with hand-washing. I asked her to wash her hands before she cuddled my 3yo as I'd noticed she'd had her finger in her mouth moments before. However, although I know I am doing the right thing with this, I seem completely neurotic and like I'm constantly watching her.

It's stressful and I probably do try and avoid her when I know she has a cold sore. That's terrible, isn't it? I just can't relax for the reasons I've mentioned. I also get embarrassed when I'm constantly on her back but what else can I do? My impression is that my aunt is completely unaware cold sores are transmitted by kissing and saliva (directly or indirectly - from fingers in the mouth, or sharing cutlery). She thinks only the blisters are contagious and they cannot be passed on if you don't kiss on the side the sore is on.

I have put my foot down because I was so upset/angry/worried. My girls now know that it isn't "safe" to kiss Auntie on the lips anymore, because Auntie can no longer feel the cold sore "waking up". I think I will have to keep reminding Auntie (she is retired and we see her once or twice per week).

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