Mono, also termed as infectious mononucleosis in medical terminology, is a viral disease, which is also known as “kissing disease” as it is commonly spread by kissing. It is mostly found in young adults, children or in people who are already sick. It is a mild disease and not a highly contagious disease and does not spread easily; most of the times people suffering from it are not even aware that they have it.
Can You Drink With Mono?
Nobody wants to miss out on weekend parties, so what if you have a mild infection. However, if you are health conscious and worried about your well-being, it is reasonable to question whether you can drink when you are suffering from mono. Some people do not care and drink anyway and there they suffer the next day and coming days. Well, it is best to avoid drinking when you are suffering from mono. Mono is known to affect liver and cause liver inflammation. As we are well aware that alcohol is processed in liver, drinking alcohol when suffering from mono can put unnecessary burden on liver and make you ill. It is even best to avoid alcohol for at least 4-6 weeks to avoid possible liver inflammation.
You do not get infected by mono easily. It is very easy to prevent mono infection, if certain guidelines are followed. Basically, mono is caused by Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) in about 95% of cases and in rare cases by other viruses. This virus is found predominantly in the bodily fluids and any secretions from the body can harbor the virus, including saliva, mucus and tears. You can contract mono if you come in intimate contact with the carrier, such as kissing or sharing utensils or drinking glass infected by the saliva of the carrier.
How Does Mono Present Itself?
Mono presents differently in different individuals. Some people, despite harboring mono virus for life do not present with any symptoms. However, when symptoms develop, it takes about 4-6 weeks for the symptoms to appear once a person is infected with mono. The patients complain of fever (which might range from 101-104 degree F) along with chills, body aches, headaches, muscle aches, fatigue, loss of energy, loss of appetite, sore throat, swollen tonsils, swollen lymph nodes in the neck or armpit area, rash, enlargement of spleen or liver or both, and pain in the abdomen (mostly upper left quadrant at the site of spleen). In severe cases, spleen may rupture (though it is rare), especially in cases of trauma to the abdomen.
How Can You Treat Mono?
Since, the symptoms of mono are varied; there is no definitive cure for mono. The treatment is aimed at reducing or minimizing the symptoms. In some cases, no treatment is required and it may take several days to couple of months for people to recover. Fever, headache and body aches can be managed with naproxen or ibuprofen (aspirin and paracetamol should be avoided), swollen lymph nodes or tonsils can be treated with prednisone, which helps reduce the duration and severity of the infection. Fatigue can be best managed with rest. It may take several months for people to recuperate from fatigue symptoms. Since, mono is a viral disease; care should be taken not to administer antibiotics that may worsen the symptoms, until Strep throat is present.
How Can Mono Be Prevented?
Mono can be easily prevented as it is not a highly contagious disease and does not spread easily, so it is very much preventable. It is important not to come in intimate contact with people suffering from it and being wary of sharing utensils and drinking glass with them. If you are suffering from mono, it is best to cover when sneezing or coughing and to wash hands regularly to prevent the spread of infection to other normal and healthy individuals.