Mum of one-year-old Kaylah, Brogan Thomas was alarmed when she went to bathe her daughter in December last year and noticed she was covered in red marks, and increasingly uncomfortable.
As Brogan, from Staindrop in England, told People, “It looked like [Kaylah had] been in a fire”.
Terrified, the mum rushed her daughter to hospital, where doctors told her Kaylah was suffering from the herpes virus, which she contracted from contact with someone who had a cold sore and had kissed the baby on the lips.
Brogan is unsure of who that person would have been though.
Kaylah spent four days in hospital. After she was discharged, the baby needed daily injections to continue treating the virus. Brogan is also required to take her daughter to hospital weekly for more testing, and in May, Kaylah will need a brain scan to determine whether the virus has affected her brain.
After the horrific ordeal, Brogan wants to warn other parents to be extra vigilant.
“So I’ve just seen a post about how parents go over the top about people kissing the child on the lips and that it’s perfectly fine?” she commenced in a post on her Facebook page on January 15.
“Well I can tell you now that’s not the case,” the mum continued.
“I’ve been there with my Kaylah when someone who’s had a coldsore has kissed her on the lips, one minute she was OK the next she wasn’t.”
Brogan explains in the post that after “numerous hospital admissions and scares”, the final diagnosis was herpes.
“Please please don’t kiss children on the lips (but parents)! We were very lucky we caught it when we did!”
The post, which included photos that show just how much herpes has affected little Kaylah, has been shared more than 35,000 times.
In an update to People, Thomas shared that Kaylah is “still very uncomfortable [and] not sleeping as well as she normally does”.
The mother further added that the herpes marks are still present, and she’s uncertain of when they will resolve, as she’s been told that Kaylah will have now have herpes permanently because it is an incurable virus.
For further information, contact your local doctor or visit the Australian Government’s Department of Health’s advice.