What is the Epstein Barr Virus and How Could it Affect Your Oral Health

The Epstein Barr virus (or EBV) is one of the most common infectious diseases in the world, and transmission is done through the exchange of saliva. As a part of the herpes family, the Epstein Barr virus can be easily transmitted and can spread within a few days or weeks.

While reported cases usually have adolescents and adults being infected, there is also the possibility of children and especially babies getting the disease. Some of the physical manifestation of the disease are sore throat, heightened temperature resulting to fever at around 102 F, swollen lymph nodes, and disorientation. There is also the possibility that these inconveniences may become severe, and you might find yourself with rashes, or your lymph nodes painful and swollen.

The Epstein Barr virus can cause some risks in your lifestyle, especially since infection of the virus can cause mononucleosis, commonly known simply as “mono”. Although this disease is also well-known as “the kissing disease”, it is important to realize that while transferring of saliva through kissing is one of the ways to get infected. It’s very easy to transmit this disease, as one other way is through sharing of utensils, drinking from similar glasses, or even simply touching something that the mouth of someone infected has touched.

Because the Epsten Barr virus and the transfer of mono is highly concentrated on the mouth, this disease can also pose some problem on your oral health. Besides limiting your actions to prevent the disease from spreading, you may find yourself having some mouth sores and also some lesions at the front and side parts of your tongue. This is called hairy leukoplakia, and it manifests when the person infected has a low immune system, which is usually when the Epsten Barr virus has made its way through your body.

There is currently no treatment for hairy leukoplakia, but it will fade in time while you continue with your anti-viral medication to treat mono. Be aware, however, that because the Epsten Barr virus can become dormant, hairy leukoplakia can return once medication stops. However, there is the possibility that this disease will also become dormant after some time, although may occasionally return.

Your lifestyle may change due to this disease. It means you have to be more careful about possibly transferring your condition to someone else. You will also have to be careful and continue taking some medications as long as the virus continues to manifest. Yet, despite this, there is no reason for your lifestyle to suffer. With proper medication and careful planning, you can make sure that you’re taking care of yourself and your oral health. Especially avoid irritating your mouth sores, and also make sure that you’re taking medication to curb the other effects of the viral infection.

Taking care of your oral health may seem like an unlikely step upon discovering EBV in your system, but it’s also important that you maintain proper hygienic acts, not only to prevent its spread but also to make sure that your condition won’t worsen and affect the other parts of your body. EBV is also commonly thought to be a possible cause of nasopharynx cancer-that is, cancer that affects the nose and throat. Making sure that you have all the facts and continue to take care of yourself will go a long way in making sure that you will continue to stay healthy and happy.