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A 38-year-old female asked:

Can you transmit cold sores via inanimate objects (toys, shirt collars)? if you don't wash hands, touch something and a toddler then touches it?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Susanne Gee
Dermatology 27 years experience
No: Scientific studies confirm that a person can only receive this virus via skin to skin contact with someone who has this virus (herpes).
Dr. Heidi Fowler
Psychiatry 26 years experience
Yes: Cold sores can be spread by touching cold sores (for instance if person with cold sore touches it with their hand - the herpes simplex virus can be spread further from there), kissing, sharing glasses, silverwear, toothbrushes or other personal items.
Last updated Oct 23, 2018

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