Bite Me: Teens, Vampires and Infection

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We come across a lot of interesting stories at the Unzipped news desk, but this one wins the week.  In a weird twist of life imitating art, teenagers are literally biting each other as a way to express affection.  Call it the “Twilight” zone.

Sucking blood is also described as a way to “mark” a loved one.  Some teens are cutting themselves and letting others taste their blood, as a means of being “connected eternally.”  You know, like vampires.

But, we’re not vampires.  We’re humans.  Our bites are notoriously infectious and frequently under-managed.  Approximately 10-15% of human bite wounds become infected.  And the possibility of transmission of disease through human bites is real.  Of the sexually transmitted infections, human bites have been shown to transmit hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and syphilis.   While there is evidence to suggest that it’s biologically possible to spread HIV through human bites, the risk is low.

Teens –  there’s just no safe way to experience this hot new blood-sucking trend.  You can play on Team Edward or Team Jacob, but when it comes to your health, play safe.

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Article by Su McFay

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