Tag Archives: HSV-1

What is Orofacial Herpes?

Orofacial Herpes is a condition brought about by the infection of herpes simplex virus of HSV. It is characterized by lesions that appear in different areas of the mouth and face. In common language they are referred to as fever blisters or cold sores. The virus is very contagious and can pass on to another by direct contact with the skin lesions as mentioned. The virus is of type 1 and type 2 kind and in studies it has been shown that HSV type 1 is responsible for the outbreaks present in the mouth, lips, nose and the face. When a patient is exposed to the virus, the first week will exhibit sores and will last for almost a month. It is a mistake to consider a person healed once the outbreak heals up because of the nature of the virus itself. The virus seeks out the nerve endings of our body. Once it reached the nerves it travels down to the ganglia and stays there for a lifetime. This means that orofacial herpes is incurable. It will lay dormant in that position until a trigger is set to unleash it once more.

It must be borne in mind that the virus becomes overwhelming and presents itself as blisters or sores especially when the immune system is down or not performing optimally. Therefore, research has suggested that when an individual is stressed it would more likely open a window for the orofacial herpes virus to manifest itself. The immune system should be maintained so as to keep the virus at bay and always in check. Other factors which are also believed to effect the appearance of herpes are menstruation , pregnancy, excessive sunlight exposure, UV lamp exposure, physical stress and other emotional concerns that can lead to fatigue.

As of the present time, there are no known cures for orofacial herpes but that does not mean that you should live in fear if ever you have been infected with this ailment. Certain life adjustments must be done when herpes comes to your life. Do not attempt to pop the blisters or sores as they might lead to further infection. If you suddenly touch the sore unintentionally, just wash your hands immediately with soap and water. There are some antiviral medications available for orofacial herpes which can greatly reduce the prevalence of sores and its duration. It is suggested however, that an early application of medication is pertinent to achieve the desired effects. Some of the more common treatments are aciclovir, valaciclovir, famciclovir and penciclovir. Take note that the best way to manage your herpes is to always keep your body in tiptop shape so that the immune system is strong enough to curb the virus particles from reappearing. Eventhough herpes is a lifetime ailment, with proper care and maintenance you can still live a life that is less cumbersome had you not known of any information about this disease. You do not have to feel sorry about yourself, you can do something about it, just get up and start healing your body now

Can Herpes Spread To Other Parts of Your Body?

If you’ve been wondering about whether or not herpes can spread to other parts of your body, the information you’ll find in this post will be extremely important. The herpes simplex virus is not life-threatening; however, this is a problem that can be uncomfortable, very problematic, and an issue that affects self-esteem, self-confidence, and a person’s ability to have normal sexual relations. So, when a person wants to know more about whether or not having herpes on your body can spread to other areas, this is very important and will need to be addressed. Here you’ll learn more about spreading herpes, and how it works when it comes to your own body.

Spreading Herpes

One of the biggest misconceptions about the herpes simplex virus is that it can spread to other areas of the body. It’s important to realize that the simplex virus only attacks certain areas of the body to begin with. Now, it’s also important to understand that there are different levels of the herpes simplex virus. HSV-1 is the most typical form of this virus. This can be related to typical cold sores that a person will find on their lip, nose, and tongue area of their mouth. This is a very common form of the simplex virus and can be found in 4 out of 10 individuals tested.

Herpes on Your Body

HSV-2 is the simplex virus that is typically sexually transmitted. This form of the herpes simplex virus will spread to other areas of the body. Primarily it’s located in the genital or anal area; however, it has been known to be located in other areas such as the buttocks, the inner thighs, and the lower abdomen just above the genital area. For all intensive purposes, it’ll be important for a person to understand how the virus actually works. The herpes simplex virus is considered to be a neurotropic or Neuro-invasive virus. This means that this virus will stay in a person’s system until it’s activated. This activation can come from a variety of different triggers. Regardless of whether you have herpes on your body or not, once a breakout has occurred, it can affect any area of the body.

It’s not that the virus has spread to any particular part of the body; it’s that once it has been activated, it attacks the weakest cells. These cells are typically found where mucous membranes are very popular such as the genitals, lips, and mouth. Now, it is not uncharacteristic that a person may experience these outbreaks on other areas of the body. If there are other weaker areas of the body were this virus can play havoc, then they will more than likely be affected. With that being said, it’s unlikely that a person can spread something that their entire body has been infected with.

It’s important to realize that there are a variety of medications available today that can help a person regardless of whether they have HSV-1 or HSV-2. If you’ve been experiencing any blistering or open sores in the genital, anal, or mouth area of your body, you’ll definitely want to talk with a physician and find out whether or not you have contracted this virus. If you have, it’ll be important for you to immediately begin taking care of your body which includes proper dieting, proper sleep, proper hydration, and taking your medications and supplements as required. By doing this, you’ll be able to better control this condition, and alleviate yourself from worrying about whether or not herpes can spread to other parts of your body.

What Is HSV-1?

HSV-1 stands for herpex simplex virus (HSV) type 1. It is the virus that is most often responsible for oral herpes, or what is commonly referred to as cold sores or fever blisters. While HSV-1 usually infects the mouth and lips, it can also spread to the genital area as a result of oral sex. But typically, oral herpes manifests as sores on the lips, gums, tongue, the soft palate or roof of the mouth, and the insides of the cheeks. Sometimes, the sores appear on the face or neck. The sores are painful, and may be accompanied by fever and muscle aches. Other possible symptoms of oral herpes are:

Itchiness, pain or a burning sensation on the site of infection prior to the appearance of sores
Pain and shallow ulcers in the throat area
A grayish coating on the tonsils
Flu-like symptoms
Swollen lymph nodes on the neck, which may be painful
Crusted, scabbed, yellowish spots when the sores dry up

Most of these symptoms last two to three weeks. They are usually experienced two to twelve days after contact with the virus. For most people, the symptoms appear four days after exposure. The sores are most painful when they first appear, and they may make it hard for the person to eat, drink and swallow. When the sores appear on the gums, they take on an angry red color, and they tend to bleed. These sores are also called herpes gingivostomatitis.

In many people with HSV-1, the symptoms are absent or very mild, and therefore hardly noticeable. As a result, the person may not even be aware that he has oral herpes. This is called an asymptomatic or symptom-less infection.

When people ask “What is HSV-1?” they usually want to make a distinction between this virus and HSV-2. The two are subtypes of the same virus. The main difference is that HSV-1 mainly causes oral herpes, while HSV-2 mainly causes genital herpes. However, it is possible, as mentioned, for HSV-1 to infect the genital area when the person has oral sex. It is also possible for HSV-2 to cause oral lesions, but these cases are not very common.

In answer to “What is HSV-1?”, it may also be stated that the herpes-1 virus can infect children and adolescents, while HSV-2 usually infects grown-ups. The reason for this lies in the transmission modes of the viruses. HSV-1 is contracted when someone touches infected saliva, skin or mucous membranes. It is highly contagious and easily contracted from kissing or touching, such as when a child kisses an infected parent or older relative. Meanwhile, HSV-2 is mainly spread through sexual contact, hence adults are the usual victims.

Both oral and genital herpes have no cure. They are a life-long infection. It is estimated that about 65% of all Americans have HSV-1 infection, but it is latent or asymptomatic in the majority of cases. Statistics suggest that there are twice as many asymptomatic cases of HSV-1 infection as there are cases with symptoms. For the latter, the infection can recur with the usual symptoms due to certain “triggers,” which include stress, illness, trauma, fatigue, fever, immune suppression, and hormonal changes.

Does Genital Herpes Affect Men Differently Than Women?

Herpes is a contagious disease caused by two types of viruses. Herpes Simplex virus type 1 and herpes simplex virust type 2 are the leading causes. The Type 2 is more common for it affects the genital area or skin around the genitals. On the other hand the type 1 virus occurs around the mouth and what is commonly termed as cold sores. A person suffereing from herpes can experience several things among which are burning sensation during urination, itching , swollen glands and even painful sores. The outbreak of the virus is longest during the first appearance and then becomes shorter in succeeding ones. It is however important to note that even if the sores heal or the symptoms do not exhibit themselves anymore, does not mean that a person is healed of herpes. Herpes is for life. The reason behind this is that the virus responsible for herpes, travels through the body using the nerve channels. Once it reaches the base of the nerves known as the ganglion, it stays there indefinitely waiting to be unleashed once more. Another thing about herpes is that a person may not know that he or she is infected with this ailment but still pass on the virus during unprotected sex. The question that remains now is does genital herpes affect men differently than women?

If one will look at the statistics, there is a trend that shows that there are more women who are infected with this virus than men. In recent studies one out of four women have herpes and only one out of eight men do. For the uninitiated it may sugges that genital herpes affect men differently than women. But this is false, the prevalence of herpes among women can be attributed to the fact that herpes transmission is more plausible because of male to female transmission than female to male transmissions. The virus responsible cannot simply choose whom to infect. In another perspective, if we treat the question of does genital herpes affect men differently than women, in terms of physiological response, it can be said that it is the same. Although, women tend to have an extra trigger for herpes outbreaks and that is whenever they have montly periods.

If you are a herpes sufferer, you must begin to manage it by getting enough information about herpes. Try not to engage in coital relations whenever you have outbreaks. If sexual activity cannot be abstained from, then use other methods of pleasure such as masturbation and fondling which is far more safer just make sure to wash your hands with soap and water to avoid transmissions as well. Your intimacy with your partner can also be greatly enhanced not only by engaging in sexual intercourse. Be creative and you will discover ways of achieving pleasure with your partner. Herpes is manageable if you know the right way to handle it. Also, consult your healthcare professional about antiviral medications which can help subside the occurrence of outbreaks. There are a number of medications available for herpes patients consult your doctor for further information.

Dating with Herpes and Finding Acceptance

Having herpes in itself can be quite a challenge, but finding a relationship where the partner is HSV free is another challenge into itself. The truth is, almost one in five Americans have HSV-2 and one in four have HSV-1. However, many people have closed their minds about herpes and immediately assume that infected people are dirty and unsafe. This is simply not true. One can still go about their normal daily activities, including dating and have a completely healthy sexual relationship with herpes. A lot of people with herpes think that it is the end of their involvement in the dating scene, but this is not true! There are many ways for you to continue dating even if you have herpes.

Specifically if you’ve been recently diagnosed and when you feel you’re ready to begin dating, it is important that you understand your own situation, first. Others may find it difficult to accept you and your situation if you don’t know anything about it yourself. So, it’s important to do some research about herpes and how it affects people, but more importantly how it affects you. Find out how it gets transmitted, and the ways to avoid infecting other people. Ask your doctor about certain herpes antiviral medication that can help lessen the outbreaks. You do not have to change your lifestyle completely once acquiring herpes, but having enough knowledge and caution will do you a lot of good.

Like any healthy relationship, honesty is a big part and it’s important that you’re honest with any potential relationships in your life. If positive, never have sex without telling someone that you have herpes. I believe it’s a moral obligation to do so. Countless people each year get herpes from partners that knowingly pass the virus. Always allow your parter to asset their own risk and comfort level to proceed, or not, with a sexual relationship.

If you ever find yourself dating other people and deciding to have a deeper relationship with them, you might want to think about the right time to tell your partner about it. If you’re dating with herpes, at a certain point, you have to take responsibility in informing your partner about your condition. The right time to tell your partner is simply when you’re comfortable with them to do so. Really, only you will know when that time is right, but never do it in the heat of the moment (minutes before sex). Give your partner an opportunity to weigh the possible risks. There are some who believe in telling others right up front, at the very beginning of a relationship, as to avoid feelings for each other, only to fear rejection later. Others, myself included, prefer to get to know someone before disclosing this personal information. The fact is, you might experience rejection or you might not, but that may also happen with or without herpes. 😉

Having herpes does not mean that you can never have sexual intimacy with a person again, quite contrary, but you must be responsible enough to have certain precautions during sexual intercourse. Dating with herpes requires extra care, and this means learning about safe sex techniques. Both you and your partner have to constantly use protection using male and/or female condoms. It is also a safe practice to avoid sexual contact if you are starting to notice symptoms of sores and outbreaks, to avoid infecting your partner. You also have to remember that oral sex can also be a way of transmitting the virus, so avoiding all sexual contact is best during outbreaks, to protect your partner from infection.

Having herpes shouldn’t hinder your dating life. By informing your partner, practicing safe sex and being aware of your own body and any potential symptoms, there’s no reason to herpes should get in your way of having a healthy relationship.

Social Stigma of Genital Herpes vs. Cold Sores

Does it seem you have a target on your head because you have genital herpes? A lot of people don’t realize that genital herpes and cold sores are actually closely related. In fact, HSV1 and HSV2 share over half of the exact same DNA. Both are forms of the herpes virus, but one is more disapproved of in society than the other. Society looks down on genital herpes because it is a sexually transmitted disease. With that in mind, cold sores can be contracted from oral sex just as easily as they can be contracted from kissing. Thus it almost doesn’t make sense for one to be more frowned upon than the other. Here we will look at a few different reasons why genital herpes may have the reputation it does and what we can do to level the playing field.

One reason that oral herpes isn’t discussed much is because a lot of people are not aware of the fact that cold sores are in fact herpes. We see commercials for cold sore treatments all the time, but rarely will you flip on the TV to see a genital herpes commercial. This leads people to believe that cold sores are common and nothing to worry about, but by engaging in oral sex, you could actually pass your facial herpes to your partner’s genitals and give him or her genital herpes.

Genital herpes happens in a region that is awkward to discuss anyways, and that may be a reason that it is frowned upon when cold sores aren’t. Mentioning blisters on a penis or vagina isn’t exactly table talk, but a simple bump in the corner of a person’s mouth isn’t that big of a deal. Until the world because more open about sexual activity and the transmission of herpes, chances are that genital herpes will still be getting the bulk of the bad looks. By remaining educated about what cold sores really are though, you could at least remove yourself from society’s view point.

Genital herpes and facial herpes are both uncomfortable to live with, but they can be treated. You can talk to your doctor about getting a test for genital herpes, and then you can ask about different treatment methods for your problems. Outbreaks can be reoccurring, but when they show up again they are usually less severe than the first outbreak. Maintaining a healthy diet and monitoring the display of herpes symptoms will help you get over your condition faster and move on with your life. Avoid skin to skin contact with people during an outbreak or shortly after and you’ll have a significant lower risk to being exposed to hsv1 and hsv2.

How Contagious Is Herpes?

When it comes to sexuality, casual kissing and casual sex is quite normal, making the ability to catch a virus like herpes a lot easier to do. Most people don’t even know much about the virus when they get it, if they realize they contracted anything at all. How did you get it? What are some signs that they have this infection? Understanding what the herpes virus is and how you can catch this infection might help you stop the spread of herpes to others. Even if you aren’t showing signs of this disease, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you don’t have it. Read below to find out just how contagious herpes can be and what you can do to halt the spreading of it.

Is herpes contagious? Well, yes; herpes is one of the most contagious diseases out there. It is very easy to spread from one person to the next through any form of skin to skin contact. Most often it is spread from kissing, HSV-2, or oral herpes, is estimated to be present among 80% of the adult US population. Aside from not kissing at all, there’s little you can do to protect yourself on your lips, other than to avoid kissing all together when you see a cold sore present. Even without the sore though, the virus can stay dormat and you can still spread the virus fairly easily.

When it comes to genital herpes, it’s also transmitted by skin to skin contact and it’s estimated that 20-25% of the adult US population have HSV-2. Even with no noticeable signs and the use of latex condoms, passing the virus is still possible. One, condoms don’t always cover the entire penis and asymmetric shedding may occur, which is actually how most genital herpes infections occur. Also, it’s possible to have outbreaks or asymmetric shedding in the testicle area, which leaves your partner completely unprotected while having sex. It’s best to avoid intercourse when you notice any sores, or feel an outbreak is coming on. It’s also suggested that you wait until you’re completely clear after an outbreak, to engage in sexually activity again.

Unlike some STD’s, Herpes is not curable. There are certainly many over the counter and prescription medications available to manage or suppress your outbreaks, but once you’ve tested positive for the virus, you have it for life. It’s also important to note that just because you are around someone with herpes doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll get it. Remember that herpes is not an air-borne virus, so you don’t have to worry about breathing in the infection. Your risks are just higher when engaging in sexually activity in that regard. The viral shedding period does happen but at that time, the virus is not nearly as active as it would be if you were around someone who was having an outbreak.

Are Oral Herpes and Genital Herpes The Same Thing?

A lot of people don’t realize that there are two different forms of herpes out there. Genital herpes and oral herpes actually share 50% of the exact DNA, they are virtually identical. Genital herpes, or HSV-2, is the one that makes the big news, and thus it is the one that most people think of when they picture herpes in general. However, oral herpes is also a problem out there, and it is one that most people have without even knowing it. Known as herpes type 1 (HSV-1), oral herpes can result in the ever so common cold sores than most people get around their mouths. Most people contract this when they’re younger, childhood or teenage years, by kissing parents, relatives, or when puberty starts when you begin kissing boys and girls. Most never even know that they have herpes.

One of the differences between the two different herpes types is the preference where the virus is located. Generally, HSV-1 prefers the mouth and lips, while HSV-2 prefers the genital region. However, it is possible to pass genital herpes to someone’s mouth or to pass oral herpes to someone’s genitals, but note while it can happen, it is rare. This usually happens during oral sex when one person does not realize that he or she is breaking out. You can pass the virus on to another person even a few days after a breakout has occurred, so you need to make sure to approach that idea cautiously. If you have vaginal or anal intercourse, make sure to use a condom to provide a barrier between the uninfected skin and the infected skin.

There are a number of tests out there for herpes, but few of them will pinpoint what kind of herpes you actually have. Blood tests, for instance, are beneficial because they can find herpes even when there is no outbreak present, but few can tell you which type of the virus you have. You will need to request specific testing from your doctor if you want to know whether you have oral herpes or genital herpes. Most of the time you will know that anyways though based on the severity and location of your particular symptoms. Even still, testing is available for you at any time. Talk to your doctor today about your options.

Is a Blood Test Effective for Testing Herpes?

If you think you have symptoms for herpes, the first thing you need to do is contact your doctor, or setup an appointment at a medical clinic and get tested. It’s imperative that you receive a proper, correct diganosis right away, so that you can begin management. There are several different tests out there to determine if a person has herpes or not, and some of them are more effective than others. If you fear that you may have contracted herpes, a blood test is the most common and effective way to determine whether you do. There are benefits and drawbacks to this method, however, and most of them will be discussed below.

The way that a blood test works with herpes is by taking a look at the antibodies in your blood. If cases of herpes are found in the antibodies, a doctor can tell for sure that you have the virus. Antibodies are the components of your immune system that help ward off different infections. Herpes is one of them. If the antibodies show a presence of herpes, then doctor’s can deduce that your body is no longer fighting off that particular infection. The result of course is a positive diagnosis for herpes in whatever form you have it.

The problem with blood tests is that they only work with the presence of herpes infected antibodies. If you have recently been infected, you may not even have the herpes in your system. This means that any tests you take will show up negative, but in a few weeks time you could actually have a breakout of some sort. Personally, my initial blood test was negative, although I was already showing minor physical symptoms. It wasn’t until after I had my initial outbreak, I was tested once again, where the result came up as positive. At that point, however, since I had an outbreak, I already knew the outcome. Also, depending on what type of blood test you have, certain types may not be able to pinpoint which kind of herpes you have, so you will have to go through additional testing to find out if it’s HSV-1 or HSV-2. In that regards, the blood test will at least give you a general diagnosis, so you will at least know that a problem is present.

The good thing about herpes blood tests is that they can detect signs of herpes even before any breakouts occur. A lot of people suffer from herpes without even knowing it because the virus is dormant in their system. With a simple blood test, doctors can determine if you do or don’t have herpes when you look perfectly healthy. There are type-specific blood tests out there that are most beneficial for people who already know they have herpes. Talk to your doctor if you want to begin testing so he or she can figure out if a blood test is right for you.

How Do You Get Herpes?

Depending on the type of herpes, HSV-1 or HSV-2, oral or genital herpes, the herpes virus is transmitted by skin-to-skin contact. Spreading of herpes happens more often than most people realize because more than 60% of people who actually have herpes don’t realize that they do. Thus they end up spreading their dormant symptoms to other people, even if there are no sores present at the time. There are several different forms of skin to skin interaction that can result in the spreading of herpes. Listed below are the most common ways that herpes is spread so you know what to watch for in the future.

It’s said that an estimated 80% of the U.S. population has oral herpes, or HSV-1. Although many downplay their infection as mere “cold sores,” HSV-1 is by far the most common type of herpes. HSV-1 is generally present around in a person’s mouth. Naturally, the most common way to spread HSV-1 is through kissing. That’s not to say if you kiss someone who has herpes in that area, you will likely get it too, but if an outbreak is present, it increases your chances of getting it dramatically. Cold sores are a sign of herpes, but more people don’t realize that when they go to kiss someone. In addition to mouth to mouth interaction though, herpes may also be spread through oral sex, either by having herpes on the genitalia or on the mouth. Any form of skin to skin contact has the potential to transmit herpes, even if it doesn’t seem like it at the time.

When it comes to genital herpes, or HSV-1, this is commonly spread by sexual intercourse. If one sex partner has herpes around his or her genitals, he or she could give it to the partner in the midst of sexual activity. This includes both vaginal or anal intercourse, as well as oral sex. One of the biggest mistakes people make is thinking because they don’t have an active outbreak, that herpes cannot be spread. That’s simply not true. The herpes virus sheds from the skin, in what is called Asymptomatic Shedding, even when no outbreak exists. Again, a sore does not need to be present in order to spread herpes. Also, it’s important to know that condoms do not always protect you from getting herpes 100%, as it the virus may exist on areas that are not covered by a condom. Herpes cannot be transfered through latex itself, so condoms definitely offer the best protection when sexually active.

If you are worried about transmitting herpes to someone or if you think you might contract it from a partner, there are some things you can do to lessen your chances for transmission. Many couples, where one partner is infected, lead completely normal, healthy sex lives throughout their entire relationship without ever infecting one another. If you have herpes, wait several days after an outbreak before having sex as there may be some skin sheds that will still transmit the virus. Always wear a condom during sex at that will provide a barrier between sexual organs and lessen the likelihood of spreading. You might also look into medical treatments for your herpes outbreaks, especially if they are severe. Talk to your doctor about any problems that you may be having, and be sure to get tested if you think you may have contracted herpes at some point in time.