You might want to avoid kissing someone if they have this

If your next first date is the best time of your life, filled with laughter, great conversation, and serious chemistry, kissing is definitely going to be on the menu. A kiss is a shared, intimate experience that activates biological responses, including a release of the feel-good chemicals; dopamine, serotonin, and oxytocin (via TIME). Kissing is a sure-fire way to further test the attraction between two potential partners, contributing to the decision of moving forward.

But what if you lean in for an anticipated killer kiss and notice a red bump or small sore on the mouth of your date? Yikes, is that a cold sore? That's one way to dampen the mood, but is a cold sore a reason to avoid a kiss? According to Healthline, yes, you should put the kibosh on the kiss as you can contract the virus this way, as well as by oral sex and sharing utensils and cosmetics. 

What is a cold sore, anyway?

Accordong to the Mayo Clinic, a cold sore is caused by the herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), or less frequently, by herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2). Your mouth or genital area can be affected by both virus types and the sores are most contagious when visible, usually for about two weeks. Unfortunately, once exposed to this virus, there is no cure, which is a good reason to avoid kissing someone with a sore. 

Typically, the virus stays dormant in nerve cells and can emerge as another cold sore at any time, yet many people who have the virus never experience symptoms. Common outbreak triggers include stress, infection, hormone fluctuations, and fever. While the virus is not curable, there are ways to manage it, including warm and cold compresses, topical gels, certain supplements, and prescribed medications (per Medical News Today). 

Should a cold sore make or break a potentially great relationship? It doesn't have to, as there are safe ways to be intimate, including dental dams, condoms, and avoiding contact during an outbreak (via WebMD). Ultimately, it's up to you to decide if your date is great relationship material, worthy of a few inconveniences — however, it's best to avoid kissing with cold sores present.