Herpes stomatitis, also known as herpetic stomatitis is a viral infection of the mouth, which causes ulcers and inflammation. Though these ulcers look similar to canker sores, these are caused by a dissimilar virus.
Causes of Herpes Stomatitis
Herpes stomatitis is a wide spreading virus disease which is caused by the virus, Herpes virus hominis. This condition is very common in young children and is probably a child’s initial exposure to herpes viruses.
The source of infection is usually not known.
Symptoms of Herpes Stomatitis
Although blisters and cold sores are usually associated with Herpes stomatitis, there are certain other signs that are associated with this tongue condition. They include:
- Inflamed gums
- Loss of appetite, though one can feel the hunger pangs, they do not like to take the food
- Blister formation around the tongue, gums, mouth, cheeks and lips
- Difficulty in swallowing
- High fever that lasts up to 2 days
- Ulcer formation inside the mouth
- Pain in the mouth
Treatment for Herpes Stomatitis
There is good range of treatments for herpes stomatitis. The treatments usually suggested by the doctor include:
- Diet which includes cold or cool liquid non-acidic foods
- Numbing medications (topical lidocaine) which can be applied to the mouth if the pain is severe
- Acyclovir, which fights the virus causing this infection
Topical medications (lidocaine) should be used with caution as they can kill the feelings inside the mouth. It can also cause swallowing difficulty, burning sensation in the throat or mouth. There are very rare reports of deaths which have resulted from misuse or overdose of lidocaine.
Prevention of Herpes Stomatitis
Nearly 90% of global population carries herpes viruses. It is very difficult to avoid a child to take up the virus at some point of time during the childhood.
Herpes stomatitis can be prevented by practicing proper oral hygiene, good diet habits and going for regular dental checkups. Parents should discourage their children from sharing food, things, kissing or playing in close contact with affected ones.