What Are Herpes and How Do I Treat Them?
Save yourself from the most common STD with the help of Proud UrologyEmbed from Getty Images
While people often don’t feel comfortable talking about it, STDs are fairly common around the world. The sexually transmitted infection causes a major impact on sexual and reproductive health in humans. According to the research and reports of the World Health Organization, more than one million Sexually transmitted infections occur every day, out of which WHO estimated that there were approximately 417 million people infected with Herpes.
In broader aspects, there are more than thirty bacteria, viruses, and parasites that are transmitted through sexual contact. Beyond the immediate impact of infection, STI can have some serious consequences on a person’s health in extreme cases. Herpes, one of the most common types of STI can increase the risk of HIV acquisition three-fold or more. In humans, teenagers come with an increase in the desire for sexual intercourse. So, proper awareness of sexually transmitted infections is extremely important for everybody. This article will give you all the required information regarding Herpes.
WHAT IS HERPES?
Herpes is the most common type of sexually transmitted disease. Any sexually active person may get Herpes. Herpes can infect or show symptoms in different parts of the body, but majorly on the genitals or in the mouth. There might be chances that a person infected with Herpes might not show any symptoms but can still spread the infection to sex partners. Sexual intercourse is the primary way that causes the spreading of Herpes.
WHAT CAUSES HERPES?
Herpes is caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus, also called HSV. It is a contagious virus that can be transmitted through direct contact from one person to another. There is no permanent cure for Herpes. Once a person gets HSV infection, they will eventually have it for the rest of their life. Two types of HSV are explained below:
- HSV-1: It causes Oral herpes. In this, the person may develop cold sores and fever blisters around the mouth or on the face.
- HSV-2: It causes Genital Herpes. It infects the genital area in humans.
According to the reports of the World Health Organization, 67% population globally have HSV-1 infection, whereas, 11% are infected with HSV-2.
ARE YOU AT THE RISK OF DEVELOPING HERPES SIMPLEX INFECTION?
Herpes is the most common sexually transmitted infection. Anybody regardless of his/her age can be infected by HSV. People indulged in unprotected sex are at more risk of getting infected with Genital Herpes.
General interactions with the infected person can spread HSV-1 infection amongst other people. This virus spreads quickly just by basic contractions with the infected person. If a healthy person is involved in oral sex with HSV-1 infected person, he might get infected with genital herpes. Moreover, HSV-1 can be contracted from some general interactions with the infected person as listed below:
- Sharing lipsticks or other makeup products.
- Eating in the same utensil
- Using the same handkerchief
HSV-2 is contracted through various forms of sexual contact with the infected person. Any kind of sexual activity, may it be oral, vaginal, or anal can spread this infection. It is generally spread through contact with a herpes sore. Major factors that make your prone to HSV-2 infection are listed below:
- Sex at a young/ immature age
- Multiple sex partners
- Week immune system
- Unprotected sex
During Childbirth if the woman has an outbreak of Genital Herpes, the baby can be exposed to both types of HSV. This uneasy situation can put both baby and the mother at risk of a serious complication.
KNOW THE SIGNS OF HERPES SIMPLEX
In many cases, people infected with Herpes Simplex may not have visible sore or symptoms of the infection. But they might still have the virus in their body. Such people can also spread Herpes at the same rate to the people showing symptoms. Some basic symptoms associated with HSV are listed below:
- In the case of Genital Herpes, the person might experience pain while urinating.
- An infected person may develop blistering sores in the mouth or genitals.
- Itching or redness on genitals.
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Loss of appetite
In severe cases, HIV infection is also spread to the eyes of the infected person. This condition is called Herpes Keratitis. Symptoms of Herpes Keratitis are mentioned below:
- Pain in eyes
- Discharge from eyes
- Gritty feeling in eyes
DIAGNOSIS FOR HERPES SIMPLEX
Herpes Simplex virus is generally diagnosed or tested through a physical examination of the person. The doctor might ask you regarding the symptoms you are experiencing as well as may check sores on your body. But since, we know that most of the times Herpes comes without the sores on the body. So, in that case, if you ever experience any unusual symptoms in your body, it is always a wise decision to go for lab STI testing. Laboratory testing can always provide you with the cause pf your infection as well as can also be beneficial for detecting the coinfections that you might have along to STD. Proud Urology provides the best laboratory testing for sexually transmitted diseases, thus, giving the most accurate results. The two ways to test STDs most effectively are:
- Through Blood test
- Through Urine Sample
Blood tests for HSV-1 and HSV-2 give the most accurate results when there are no sores present on the body of a person who is at risk of having the Herpes infection. For the people who have sores on their genitals, HSV testing can give the most accurate results. In the process of HSV testing, a swab sample of fluid from the sores of the person’s body is taken and tested in the laboratory. You can always rely on Proud Urology Clinic for accurate results.
TREATMENT FOR HERPES SIMPLEX
There is no specified cure for Herpes Simplex Virus. The infected people can only get rid of sores on their body and limit the Herpes outbreak with the help of medicines prescribed by the doctor. These medicine after a considerable period of in-take also help people in reducing the risk of transmission to others. In cases of severe outbreaks, these medicines might be given to the infected person through injections.
MEASURES TO PREVENT HERPES SIMPLEX VIRUS INFECTION
- Don’t share your items, like, towel, lip color, utensils, clothes, and other personal items with people in general.
- Avoid oral sex and kissing during an outbreak.
- Practice safe sex. Use condoms during sexual intercourse.
- If you are already infected with the virus, always take necessary precautions while applying for medicine on your sores. Maintain proper hygiene and use a cotton swab for medication.
- If you have any kind of sexually transmitted infection in your body, you must always stay honest about it with your partner.
- Proper treatment and medicines are extremely important for infected individuals.
In case if you think you may have herpes, feel free to have a consultation at Proud Urology Clinic.
STAY HEALTHY, STAY SAFE!