Kissing and Disease: The Potentially Harmful Effects on Your Health

Kissing and Disease: The Potentially Harmful Effects on Your Health


Kissing is one of the most intimate gestures between two people, but did you know that it can also pose health risks? While the act of kissing is usually associated with love and intimacy, it’s important to understand the potential harmful effects that can result from swapping saliva. In this article, we’ll explore the potential health risks of kissing, and how you can protect yourself.

Kissing and Disease

A study conducted by the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research discovered that kissing can transmit up to 80 million bacteria. While not all bacteria are harmful, some can cause illnesses such as strep throat, gum disease, and even meningitis. Additionally, research has shown that kissing can also spread the herpes virus, which can manifest around the mouth or genitals. In rare cases, the open sores created by the herpes virus can lead to meningitis or encephalitis.

The Importance of Good Oral Hygiene

While kissing can transmit disease, it’s important to take steps to prevent these risks. Maintaining good oral hygiene is essential, including regular brushing, mouthwash, and flossing. It’s also important to stay on top of any oral health issues, such as gum disease or cavities, as these can increase the risk of spreading bacteria.

When to Avoid Kissing

While avoiding kissing entirely may seem like the best option, it’s not always practical or desirable. However, there are certain situations where it’s important to avoid kissing to prevent the spread of disease. For example, if you or your partner have a cold sore, it’s best to avoid kissing altogether until it has fully healed. Additionally, if either of you are sick, it’s best to hold off on kissing until recovery.


While the risks of disease transmission may seem alarming, it’s important to remember that the positive effects of kissing often outweigh the negative. That being said, it’s important to understand the potential risks and take steps to prevent the spread of disease through good oral hygiene and avoiding kissing when necessary. By doing so, you can enjoy the intimacy and love associated with kissing, while also protecting your health.

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