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Dr. Bob
Dr. Bob, Medical Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 5331
Experience:  20 Years in Internal Medicine, Neurology and Sports Medicine
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My father in law has herpes. I have herpes and also my

Customer Question

My father in law has herpes. I have herpes and also my girlfriend has herpes my mother-in-law says she doesn't. my mother-in-law wants to kiss my 15 month old daughter on the face after many in instances where we asked her not to.
Because I have herpes and i get painful sores in my mouth. I'm hypersensitive to everyone kissing her face and I don't kiss her. I ask everyone not to kiss her face or hands just to be safe and her mother will not stop the mother said she's never had an outbreak but will not be tested what should I do.. she's been married to her husband with herpes for 20 year i think she probably has it. Plus her and all of her friends and husband's offen kiss each other on the mouth . The first time we confronted both of them they both lied and said that they don't have it when we know he does. ive read that asymptomatic people can have herpes and spread it without cold sores. The fact she wont test makes me even more worried she's herpes postive. Am i over reacting? If you were in this position what with you do.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. Bob replied 1 year ago.

Hi there. As a fellow parent I understand your concern about the possible transmission of herpes to your daughter. It can, and often is, spread from family member to family member. Keep in mind, though, that over 60% of individuals in the world are estimated to have oral herpes (herpes simplex virus 1). Most of us have been exposed to it by the time we reach our late 20s. While it can be a nuisance and result in outbreaks of painful lesions, most people do not get lesions or only do so rarely. The virus is almost always harmless. In those with frequent outbreaks, medications can be used to suppress the virus and keep it silent.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I understand all of that.. is it unrealistic to ask people not to kiss the babys face. What would you do in this situation. stop the mother in law from kissing her or let her and just hope she doesnt spread the virus to my toddler.. What would you do knowing the risks
Expert:  Dr. Bob replied 1 year ago.

You certainly have the right to ask people not to kiss your baby on the mouth. This would be the most likely source of transmission (other than transferring saliva from the hands or by sharing drinks). However, I think it is virtually impossible to prevent your daughter from getting the oral herpes virus during the course of her lifetime. If she does not pick it up from one of you, or your in-laws, she will pick it up from a friend at school someday or a sibling, if you are planning on having more kids. If she is in good health otherwise, and has a normal immune system, she should be able to handle the virus just like everyone else. Some would argue that it is better to pick it up as a child than later as an adult. Antibodies produced in response to the virus now, might actually help protect her against similar viruses in the future. :-)