Infectious mononucleosis commonly referred to as just ‘mono,' is known to the general public as "the kissing disease" – due to the way it's mostly transmitted. The infectious Epstein-Barr virus that carries mono resides in the sufferer's saliva. While it is most commonly contracted through kissing, it is also an aerial threat whenever a sufferer sneezes or coughs, as well as a frequent resident of the glasses and cutlery previously used by those infected by it. In spite of popular belief, mononucleosis is much less contagious than most infectious diseases, such as the common cold. The infection mostly goes by unnoticed in younger children, but certain disadvantages are prone to showing in adolescents and young adults. The most common symptoms of mono are fatigue, sore/strep throat that doesn't improve with treatment, fever, headaches, tonsil swelling, spleen swelling, skin rashes and lymph node swelling in the neck and armpit areas. The infrequent complications of untreated mono can have grave consequences, including spleen rupture, jaundice, hepatitis, anemia, tonsil swelling that blocks breathing, nervous system diseases (meningitis, encephalitis, and Guillain-Barre syndrome), thrombocytopenia and heart problems such as myocarditis. Mononucleosis is usually easy to treat, with proper rest, healthy nutrition and increased fluid intake. Antibiotics are generally not recommended against mono due to their ineffectiveness against viral infections.
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