Herpetic Whitlow is a very painful viral infection caused by the herpes virus. We don’t want our children or even ourselves to be exposed to this virus. It can be avoided, even if you are surrounded by people who have infections. Dental and medical workers have the biggest risk in getting this infection, so these individuals should be more cautious about preventing contracting herpetic whitlow.
Let us start at home. If you have kids who are thumb sucking, try to stop them from this practice. Continuous sucking of thumbs will possibly get the infection from their mouth, especially if they have a cold sore. This infection can easily be transmitted to other parts of your body, but especially the thumb since children like to chew their thumb. If you are applying treatment to your child, wash your hands immediately right after you apply the treatment to prevent a possible virus transmission.
If you are already exposed to herpes simplex virus type 1, avoid touching your lips, mouth, face, nose or other parts of your body so that it won’t spread and it won’t transfer to your index finger or thumb. If you already have herpetic whitlow, avoid rubbing your eyes as the infection may transfer to your eyes. It is also recommended for you to switch to eye glasses for a while if you are wearing contact lens, so you won’t have to touch your eyes. Prevent your fingers from touching your face. You can cover your fingers with bandages or plasters if you cannot control touching your face.
For couples who are infected by genital herpes, try to prevent sexual contact for a while and wait for the infection to heal. Never share flannels or towels and toiletries with your partner. Prevent holding hands with one another.
For medical workers and dental workers, wear gloves while you are in your workplace. Limit your exposure to patients, especially if there are open blisters. Wash your hands or sanitize your hands after you have physical contact with your patients.
If you wash and clean your hands regularly with soaps, you have a better chance to prevent this kind of infection. Personal hygiene is very important so bacteria and virus won’t invade your hands. Always remember to avoid touching people who have a herpetic whitlow infection in order to safe guard yourself from this infection and to avoid major problems and complications in the future.
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