Can You Get Herpes from Snorkeling?

Having herpes is an unpleasant condition to say the least. Let’s see how it affects your snorkeling experience!

It is possible for herpes and other transmissible infections to spread through snorkeling. The herpes simplex virus is the cause of these infections, which can be transferred by direct contact with an infected individual. However, if you take certain measures, you may easily prevent this.

Direct Physical Contact or Saliva of an Infected Person

If you’re worried about contracting herpes from another person while swimming in the ocean, be assured that merely being in the water with an infected person won’t transfer the virus around to other people. These viruses can’t survive long outside the body and therefore won’t be spread unless you somehow come into direct contact with someone else who has an infection.

Cold sores usually begin with an irritation, which is followed by the eruption of the sore. The sores can be of varying sizes. This generally lasts for a week or two as the crust develops and the lesion heals. When the sores erupt and cause the fluids to leak, they are highly infectious; therefore, if you or someone else is infected and are at this stage, be extra careful so that it does not spread to others.

If your fingers come into contact with someone’s infected sores, you are at risk of spreading the virus to yourself and others. Kissing is one of the most common methods for the virus to spread. Since an infected person’s saliva can also contain the virus, using the same utensils or drinking from the same cups and bottles as someone who is sick will result in you catching the virus and getting infected.

Herpes from Snorkeling

Cut Down Any Possibilities For Infection

Since the infection is spread through direct contact with an infected person, the obvious thing to do is to avoid coming into contact with an infected person and not share items with them. It is always advised to bring your own tools, utensils, equipment, etc., on your snorkeling trip, and always make sure to disinfect your things before using them. Drink from your own cups and eat from your own plates to reduce the possibility of catching or transmitting disease.

Similarly, try to bring your own snorkeling gear so that there’s no risk of catching any diseases. If you don’t have your own and have to get rental gear, then ensure that the gear is cleaned and sanitized properly. This way, any virus or bacteria will be eliminated from the gear, making it safe for you to use.

On the other hand, if you are suffering from an infection, consider not going if possible and reschedule your trip to when you’re fully healed because swimming with cold sores isn’t the most comfortable experience. This way, you also won’t put anyone else at risk of catching it accidentally. Otherwise, you can just make sure to follow some precautions, and it should be completely fine.

Uncomfortable Mouthpiece May Also Cause Irritation

Diseases aren’t the only thing you should be wary of when it comes to wearing snorkeling equipment. Snorkels appear to be straightforward, yet they come in a wide range of styles, types, and sizes. It’s important to pick the right one according to your mouth shape and preferences.
Not having the right kind of snorkel could completely take the fun out of the experience and cause you great discomfort.

If the mouthpiece of the snorkel is too big, it can be uncomfortable to wear and may cause irritation. The same applies to the fins; if they’re too tight, they could cause blistering. So always make sure that your snorkeling gear is comfortable enough for you to wear.

If your gear feels uncomfortable and too big, make sure to get it switched out with more comfortable gear so that you don’t end up with blisters after a nice and refreshing swim. In case there aren’t any replacements available, you can trim down and adjust the mouthpiece to your preference. With this, you can avoid blistering and irritations in your mouth.

snorkeling mask herpes

Allergy to Rubber

Aside from having gear that is the right size for you, it is also important to make sure it is made of materials that won’t result in any kind of allergic reaction. The material of the snorkels could also impact the overall comfort of the gear. In critical components such as the mouthpiece, cheap snorkels often use PVC or other cheap rubber as a silicone ‘like’ substance.

Unlike silicone, these low-quality options are hard materials that make the snorkels quite difficult to wear, especially if used as a mouthpiece, which will likely rub and induce pain. Meanwhile, silicone is a pleasant, soft, and flexible material, making it a far superior choice for use in snorkels. To make it even better, it is extremely uncommon to develop allergic contact dermatitis to silicone. So you don’t have to worry about getting any allergic reactions to a silicone-based mask.

This is why always check the material of your gear and make sure it’s something you’re not allergic to or feel uncomfortable wearing. An easy way to spot cheaply-made snorkels is to check for discoloration because when these low-cost materials get a bit warm, they distort and lose their form and easily discolor. Having a soft and comfortable silicone-based snorkel mask will make your snorkeling experience all the more enjoyable.

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