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Date of last update: 10/12/2017.

Forum Name: Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Question: Spreading Herpes

 bttflyfwr - Thu Sep 18, 2008 1:44 am

Do I have to worry about spreading herpes (genital and oral) to my family (including an infant) through things such as using the same toliet, bathtub, or washing my underwear and towels with their clothes? Should I clean the toliet and bathtub after every time I use them, and if so, what cleaning products should I use? I am also concered about how well to clean my hands so I don't spread the virus unknowingly. Thank you
 John Kenyon, CNA - Sat Oct 25, 2008 10:25 pm

User avatar Hi there -

Herpes is transmitted either by direct physical contact with a lesion or bodily fluids, or sometimes via skin-to-skin contact. It is a fragile virus outside the body, so while routine environmental hygeine is (always) wise, it is probably near-impossible to contract herpes type I or II via any environmental surface unless fresh exudate somehow finds its way onto a surface which is then contacted directly by another, a scenario which is almost impossible.

In short, no. there is no need for special enviornmental cleanup following use of ordinary household facilities. You're to be commended, however, for your vigilance. Direct contact is the area which must be most closely monitored. Hand washing can be as per usual, but should be done anyway, so just continue that good habit as always. Other than that, just stay aware of active lesions and try to avoid contact with the affected area during those times.

Good luck to you.

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