Glandular fever and kissing disease are the common names given to infectious mononucleosis. It is a common disease caused by Epstein-Barr virus. Epstein-Barr virus comes from the herpesvirus family. The symptoms of mono are malaise, fever and sore throat like other EBV infections. In mononucleosis there is an increase in white blood cells of one category in the main steam of blood in relation to other blood cells due to EBV infection.
Causes of Mononucleosis:
Almost all parts of the world have EBV related infections. An antibody develops in the blood as one reaches puberty. A high percentage of 95% of US population that is between the ages of 35 to 40 have EBV directed antibodies in their bodies. What it means is that majority of people in their lives have been infected by some sort of EBV infection as it is natural for human body to create anti bodies to fight and destroy bacteria and viruses that invade it. The presence of EBV antibodies means that these people have had the EBV infections.
- Mononucleosis spreads from one infected person to the others through saliva mostly. Because saliva is the primary way of germ transfers it is named a kissing disease. And among teenagers it is very much prevalent.
- It can also be caused by the cough, sneeze or mucus in the air which can be breathed by a healthy person and lead to him getting Mononucleosis.
- Sharing food through the same container will also lead to transfer of the virus as you will be coming in contact with the infected saliva.
- Since most of the people have antibodies that have been developed by getting Mononucleosis they are more prepared to fight EBV infections. The virus takes an incubation period of six weeks at most before finally the symptoms appear. While infected the person is a carrier of Mononucleosis virus and can infect others.
- Most people who suffer from Mononucleosis and recovered kept secreting the Mononucleosis virus from their saliva for many years because of the reactivation of the Mononucleosis viral infection from time to time. These healthy people are the main causes of EBV virus infections since they spread it without knowing they are carrier of Mononucleosis virus, 20 to 80% Mononucleosis disease is caused by them.
It is good to know how Mononucleosis spreads as it makes you better prepared to make preventive measures.