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Thursday, October 1, 2020

Kissing Disease: Can Adults Suffer From Mono?

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Passing through high school as an active teenager who loved to explore and kiss a lot without getting infected with the kissing disease is worth celebrating, but do not think you have escaped it totally.

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A lot of ladies are unaware that it is possible for a grown woman to come down with the dreaded mono disease.

Mono is one disease that drains all the happiness out of you, and if you are wondering what other things there are to know about mono, we have them gathered here.

Wait! What exactly is Mono?

The kissing disease, AKA mononucleosis- is a widespread and contagious infection that is caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. However, other illnesses such as HIV, and hepatitis A, B, or C, can also trigger the mono infection.

It is true that the mono virus is common amongst teenagers and other young adults, it is also possible for other people to contract it because almost every person will be exposed to the EBV at some point in their life because the virus is spread by body fluids. One out of every four people will develop the kissing disease according to the centre of disease control and prevention.

The symptoms of mono do not show up usually until about four to six weeks after a person gets infected. However, while feeling tired is a symptom of the kissing disease,  there are many other symptoms if you suspect you are infected with mono please see your doctor immediately.

Symptoms of mono

1. Exhaustion

The most well-known symptom of mono is primarily fatigue. You may feel like everything you do is slowed down by your body. This is because once you get infected with mono, your immune system becomes busy trying to eliminate the mono virus.

This makes it difficult for your body to reserve enough energy for you to carry out simple daily tasks. The fatigue a sufferer experiences  takes quite a long time to disappear  and most victims recover from every other symptom in about a month, but the fatigue can still linger for a few weeks or months after the infected person is treated.

2. Tender and swollen lymph nodes

The lymph nodes are a vital part of a person’s immune system- they assist to detect and also fight against infections that’s why they get sometimes swollen when you fall sick. You can feel them enlarged in your armpit, throat, or groin when you fall ill.

While with other illnesses, you only feel that your lymph nodes are swollen, with mono they become big enough that they appear visibly sticking out of the sides of your neck or even big show up tangibly in your underarm.

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The swollen nodes are also tender to touch at this point.  Another place your swollen lymph nodes can appear too is at the back of your neck which doesn’t occur with other forms of viruses.

To quickly check if you have been infected by the mono virus you can check the back of your neck just below your skull.  That is where your occipital lymph nodes are housed, and if they feel sore, you probably have the kissing disease.

The more contagious your case becomes, the more swollen your lymph nodes become.

3. A rash in your mouth or on your chest

The kissing disease can make a rash of red bumps show up on your skin, mostly on your chest or in your mouth.

The outbreaks won’t be like bug bites or blisters, just simple skin irritation kind of rash. The appearances of the rash on your skin are just a result of your immune system trying to fight off the virus.

In a lot of cases, the mono virus is misdiagnosed by doctors as a bacterial infection, but it is, in reality, a viral infection.

If you get misdiagnosed and you treat the illness with antibiotics, the rash will become worse, and that usually serves as a confirmation that a person has mono.

Usually, rashes are one of the potential side effects of antibiotics; however, people who have been infected with mono have a higher degree of outbreak appearing on their skin.

4. Stubborn body and headache

Getting constant headaches for days on end is also a symptom of mono( there can be other causes of such headaches though).

These headaches tend to be the tension-type which can be sometimes caused by the potential inflammatory impact of the Epstein-Barr virus on the nervous system and brain.

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When a person has a fever or your immune system is trying to fight off an illness, your brain usually lacks the required level of fuel or hydration thus a headache is evidence of that stressor on your body.

Body aches come into play also as a result of your body’s struggle to get rid of the infection. If you experience body pain and headaches that remain even after days of rest and treatment, then you should consult with your doctor and get tested for the kissing virus.

5.  A low grade fever

Mono isn’t one of those infections that bring out a serious increase in body temperature, but victims can experience low-grade fever from around 98.6 and 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fever is a tool your body employs to battle infections as a higher body temperature triggers antiviral compounds in your blood. You may begin to cough when you have the fever, and fever usually means the mono has got to a very contagious level.

6. A swollen  or sore belly

The mono infection can cause a sufferer’s liver or spleen to have an inflammation or swell because these organs will be working extra hard to fight the infection.

The mono infection causes a victim’s body to produce plenty of white blood cells and the spleen is responsible for filtering these white blood cells as they fight the virus so it is especially taxed.

It is vital that you prevent your belly from any physical contact when you are dealing with the mono virus.

A simple hit or a fall that affects your belly can make your liver or spleen get ruptured. Even after you feel better, there is the possibility of your spleen and liver remaining enlarged, so you have to be very careful.

7. A sore throat

Not every person who gets the mono infection suffers from a sore throat or swollen tonsils. However, they are a symptom that can work with other rare symptoms to deceive your doctor and cause them to make a wrong diagnosis of your condition.

The tonsils are actually a kind of lymph node.  When they work to move your white blood cells  they begin to swell. However, Adults get to experience more throat symptoms when they get a mono infection than when young people get them.

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The bad news about having mono is that there is no instant cure for it, However, in a few weeks, you should be on your way to recovery if you get the right treatment. It also might take up to six months for some individuals to feel 100% recovered.

Kissing Disease
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Disclaimer: This article is purely informative & educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional.

Emmanuella Ekokotu
Ekokotu Emmanuella is a sociologist and Anthropologist, writer, and fashion model who lives in Benin city, Edo state,Nigeria.
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