Did you know that 6 out of 10 people have the cold sore virus? The initial infection of HSV-1 (herpes simplex virus 1) often occurs when one is young and it is usually mistaken for a cold, fever, or flu. The virus remains inactive in the body until a trigger (such as stress, illness, and fatigue) activates it and causes painful blisters to develop around the lips, which is when the cold sore virus is most contagious.
Cold Sores And Dentistry
If you develop cold sore blisters before seeing your dentist for a procedure, you may need to call their office to reschedule your appointment. Dental care can not only be very uncomfortable with cold sores present, but HSV-1 is highly contagious and could spread to your dentist.
This virus can get through dental gloves and infect your dentist’s and hygienist’s fingers. Even though they will wash their hands and change gloves before seeing other patients, there is still an increased risk of spreading this infection.
Preventing The Spread Of Cold Sores
You should not only worry about spreading the cold sore virus in the dentist’s office, but at home too. If you have developed cold sore blisters, then avoid kissing others and sharing utensils, razors, drinking glasses, and towels. Also wash your hands regularly and avoid touching the blisters. Be sure to replace your toothbrush after having a reoccurrence of cold sores.