Which Foods Should You Avoid During An Outbreak
If you have symptomatic oral or genital herpes, youll likely experience outbreaks on occasion even with a flawless diet.
During a herpes outbreak, the best way to fight the virus and speed up healing is through the use of an antiviral medication such as valacyclovir. This is a prescription medication that youll need to talk about with your doctor.
While theres no proof that food can worsen or improve a herpes outbreak, many people with herpes report improvements after avoiding certain foods.
Avoiding foods with a herpes outbreak is tough, but generally, stay away from anything spicy, salty or oily, as these foods are most likely to irritate the lips and gums. Acidic drinks, like fruit juices, are also best avoided if you have open cold sores that could potentially become irritated.
Studies also show that arginine, an amino acid found in a variety of foods, can play a role in the spread of viruses such as herpes. Arginine has viral growth properties, meaning it may increase the rate at which viruses like HSV-1 and HSV-2 multiply in the body.
As such, its best stay away from foods high in arginine like turkey breast, pork loin, chicken breast, nuts , pumpkin seeds, chickpeas, soybeans, dairy products and lentils during an outbreak of herpes.
Instead, stick to a simple, healthy diet that gives you a complete supply of vitamins, minerals and essential nutrients without supply excessive amounts of arginine.
The Early Warning Signs Of Genital Herpes
Once you learn to identify the early warning signs of a genital herpes outbreak, you can take action to avoid the worst outbreak symptoms.
The most common sign of genital herpes is the development of blisters around the genital area. Herpes simplex blisters are often itchy and painful.
Other symptoms may accompany the blisters to indicate early warning signs of genital herpes:
- -Difficult or painful urination
- -Wash your hands immediately after any possible contact with sores to prevent the spread of infection
- -Take medication as directed by your healthcare professional
- -Use natural treatments known to reduce discomfort and accelerate healing
- -Use foods and supplements known to strengthen your immune system
- -Use the Luminance RED on current outbreaks and in-between
What Are The Stages Of A Cold Sore
The herpes simplex virus type 1 emerges in five distinct phases that cause painful and unpleasant cold sore outbreaks.
These five stages transition through tingling, blistering, weeping, crusting, and healing:
Though theres no permanent cure for cold sores, its possible to expedite the recovery process and leave your skin looking smooth and attractive once again.
Rarely, leaving cold sores untreated, can lead to complications, especially in people with weak immune systems.
You May Like: Can You Get Genital Herpes From Kissing
Is There A Cure Or Treatment For Herpes
There is no cure for herpes. Antiviral medications can, however, prevent or shorten outbreaks during the period of time the person takes the medication.11 In addition, daily suppressive therapy for herpes can reduce the likelihood of transmission to partners.11
There is currently no commercially available vaccine that is protective against genital herpes infection. Candidate vaccines are in clinical trials.
Recommended Reading: Can You Donate Blood If You Have Genital Herpes
What Are The Symptoms Of Herpes Ii
Typically, the first signs of herpes II is a cluster of blister-like lesions in the genital area which spread and merge, break and crust over within four to 15 days. The fluid from these itching, painful sores is highly infectious. Other frequent symptoms are painful urination, urethral or vaginal discharge and swollen lymph nodes. The first exposure or primary episode consists of headache, fever, chills and muscular weakness. Recurrent episodes are less severe and are limited to the affected area.
Also Check: How Do Doctors Test For Genital Herpes
Is Herpes Simplex Related To Herpes Zoster
Like HSV-1 and HSV-2, shingles can cause a painful, blistering rash. The shingles rash usually shows up on the back, side, abdomen , neck and face. It is often only on half of your body, following the pattern of your nerves. See your healthcare provider if you have a new rash and suspect you may have shingles.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Herpes simplex is a virus. Once you have herpes, its a lifelong condition. A herpes infection can lead to outbreaks , but youll also have times when you have no symptoms. The main sign of herpes is sores that appear on the infected skin. Some people choose not to treat herpes, especially if symptoms are mild. Others take antiviral medications to reduce the severity and frequency of outbreaks.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 05/17/2022.
Best For Skin Barrier: Vaseline 100% Pure Petroleum Jelly
- Price: $3.2917.70
- Pros: available in a range of sizes, suitable for sensitive skin
- Cons: reports of product hygiene issues from online sellers
A person can purchase Vaseline online through Amazon.
Vaseline states it is hypoallergenic and suitable for sensitive, dry skin.
It also claims that its product helps seal in moisture, which may help the skin heal naturally. Additionally, petroleum jelly creates a barrier between the skin and outside elements.
This Vaseline product may be best suited to people with cold sores.
Vaseline costs between $3.2917.70, depending on the tub size.
Pros: suitable for smaller budgets, high volume per bottle, third-party testedCons: limited research into the effectiveness of L-lysine for herpes
These caplets are suitable for vegetarians and free of allergens such as yeast, wheat, gluten, milk, and lactose. They are also free of sugar.
CVS Pharmacy claims these caplets may help support healthy skin, collagen production, and tissue maintenance.
CVS states it requires third-party testing for all supplements.
The company recommends taking one caplet a day on an empty stomach. Each pill contains 1,000 mg of L-lysine.
CVS Pharmacy L-Lysin Caplets cost $11.29.
Don’t Miss: Can You Donate Organs If You Have Herpes
How Do You Prevent Genital Herpes
People with genital herpes outbreaks are highly contagious. Anyone with active disease should avoid any sexual contact when sores are present. Even the use of a condom does not prevent the spread of disease because not all sores are covered by the condom.
Although the chance of spreading disease is greatest when sores are present, people who have had genital herpes may always be contagious to some degree, even if they have received medical treatment. The virus can become active and be transmitted to a sexual partner even when the skin appears completely normal. For this reason, safe sex practices should be used between disease outbreaks to lessen the chance of spreading the disease to a sexual partner. There is no vaccine available to prevent genital herpes infection.
Pay Attention To What You Eat
ASHA reports that some people believe foods containing the amino acid arginine, such as legumes and whole grains, can contribute to outbreaks. A few older studies, conducted in 1981 and 1987, showed a possible connection, but ASHA states there is no clinical evidence to support these studies. However, because triggers may vary based on the individual, keep track of the foods you eat to determine if there is a connection.
Recommended Reading: Does Lysine Help Herpes Outbreaks
Can I Breastfeed If I Have Genital Herpes
Yes, you can breastfeed if you have genital herpes, but not if you have a herpes sore on one of your breasts. If you have genital herpes, it is possible to spread the infection to any part of your breast, including your nipple and areola.
If you have any genital herpes sores on one or both of your breasts:
- You can keep breastfeeding as long as your baby or pumping equipment does not touch a herpes sore.
- Do not breastfeed from the breast with sores. Herpes is spread through contact with sores and can be dangerous to a newborn baby.
- Pump or hand-express your milk from the breast with sores until the sores heal. Pumping will help keep up your milk supply and prevent your breast from getting overly full and painful. You can store your milk to give to your baby in a bottle for another feeding. But if parts of your pump also touch the sore while pumping, throw the milk away.
Dont Miss: Can Herpes Cause Cervical Cancer
Herpes Symptoms And Signs
In order to diagnose herpes, a health care provider can swab an area of visibly active herpes infection or, if symptoms arent active, a blood test can be given that measures the number of herpes antibodies present in the body. The antibodies dont indicate herpes itself, but rather show the immune systems response to the presence of the virus in the body. Its important to note that sometimes a swab can give false negative results since herpes lesions need to be large enough to yield enough detectable virus and if the outbreak is already healing it also may not be detected in a swab.
The most common herpes symptoms include:
- Developing either a single cold sore or cluster of multiple cold sores that form on the lips, inside the mouth, or on the genitals, buttocks and upper thighs.
- Sores can sometimes be severe, painful and rupture and cause fluid to be secreted out.
- Some herpes canker sores develop a thin, white coating and burn when touched while they healing.
- Around herpes cold sores, its common to feel pain, tenderness and other symptoms of a rash, such as redness or signs of swelling.
- Some people are able to tell before an outbreak if one is going to occur because they feel tingling, itchy sensations near the affected area.
- Some people develop other symptoms during herpes outbreaks that are similar to those caused by a cold or the flu. This may include fatigue, irritability, aches or a slight fever.
Read Also: Can You Get Herpes On Your Chin
Best Zinc Supplement: Thorne Zinc Picolinate
- daily allowance of zinc, larger bottles are expensive
These zinc capsules are gluten, dairy, and soy-free.
Thorne claims that these supplements may support immune and reproductive health. Each capsule contains 30 mg of zinc.
The company recommends taking one capsule per day.
It is important to note that 30 mg of zinc is more than double the daily recommended value, which the National Institutes of Health states is 811 mg for adults.
A person can choose between bottles containing 60 or 180 capsules. They can also choose a bottle that holds National Sanitation Foundation certification for sport, meaning the product has been tested and found to be free of banned substances.
Thorne Zinc Picolinate 30 mg costs $1735.
- the medicinal plant Tripterygium hypoglaucum
- compounds in the oil of cloves and the essential oil of cinnamon and basil
A person can use oils in a diffuser, diluted in a carrier oil, added to a bath, or massaged on the skin.
People should not consume essential oils, as some are toxic and can cause harm.
When using essential oils for aromatherapy, it is also important to consider anyone else in the area. Some essential oils are harmful to pets and pregnant or nursing people.
Using a carrier oil is important, as the essential oil may cause adverse effects if a person applies it directly to the skin. Carrier oils
Some medications can lower the chance of spreading the herpes virus and reduce the severity and frequency of the symptoms.
Myth: People With Herpes Must Be Promiscuous
The reality of any STI is you dont need to sleep around to get infected. This is especially true for herpes, considering theres such a large population of asymptomatic carriers, says Dr. Dardik. While having more partners obviously increases your risk of any kind of any kind of sexually transmitted infection, the reverse doesnt always hold, she points out. In other words, all it takes is one partner.
Read Also: What Are Hiv Hpv And Herpes
You May Like: Does Epsom Salt Help Herpes Outbreak
How Can You Prevent Cold Sores
There are some things you can do to keep from getting the herpes simplex virus.
- Avoid coming into contact with infected body fluids, such as kissing an infected person.
- Avoid sharing eating utensils, drinking cups, or other items that a person with a cold sore may have used.
After you have been infected with the virus, there is no sure way to prevent more cold sores. But there are some things you can do to reduce your number of outbreaks and prevent spreading the virus.
- Avoid the things that trigger your cold sores, such as stress and colds or the flu.
- Always use lip balm and sunscreen on your face. Too much sunlight can cause cold sores to flare.
- Avoid sharing towels, razors, silverware, toothbrushes, or other objects that a person with a cold sore may have used.
- When you have a cold sore, make sure to wash your hands often, and try not to touch your sore. This can help keep you from spreading the virus to your eyes or genital area or to other people.
- Talk to your doctor if you get cold sores often. You may be able to take prescription pills to prevent cold sore outbreaks.
Can Genital Herpes Be Cured Naturally
This question is quite frequent and there is a lot of discussion as to whether or not a purely natural treatment can eliminate the virus from the body once and for all.
Natural or alternative medicine includes treatments based on home remedies, acupuncture, ozone therapy and the use of natural ointments.
Several herbs and essential oils with antiviral properties are known to help fight the herpes simplex virus, but they do not completely eliminate it from our body.
One of the most commonly used natural ointments to treat genital herpes is Tea Tree Ointment, which is obtained by processing the oil extract from this tree which has well-known antibiotic and antiviral properties. The ointment does not eliminate the virus and its cost is about 40 USD.
Also Check: Does Stress Cause Herpes Outbreaks
How To Heal Herpes Sores Faster
An outbreak of genital herpes can be upsetting and painful – so it comes as no surprise that if you are experiencing an outbreak, you want to know how to heal herpes sores faster than traditional methods of management.
The herpes simplex virus is a sexually transmitted disease categorized into two main variations, HSV-1 and HSV-2. While HSV-1 is primarily associated with cold sores that surface during times of stress or lack of sleep, genital sores attributed to HSV-2 frequently cause discomfort and pain.
This pain, coupled with the embarrassment and anxiety of a flare-up, often leaves infected individuals seeking medical aid to reduce their symptoms, and heal sores faster.
This article will explore the various methods utilised to successfully lessen the intensity of a genital herpes outbreak.
Treating Swollen Lips From Allergic Reactions
If you have swollen, red and itchy lips for no reason, it could be caused by allergies. Avoid contact with allergens e.g. some foods that cause the allergy, pet dander, latex, lip care products some medications, pollen grains, etc.
Secondly, reduce lip swelling from allergies, ensure you get an antihistamine such as benadryl to reduce the allergic reaction as well as apply cold compresses. For excessive swelling, you might be required to take oral corticosteroids for fast action.
If you suffer from an extreme allergic reaction, that will have other severe symptoms other than the lip swelling, see a doctor since some allergic reactions such as anaphylaxis allergy is life threatening and it can cause death.
Recommended Reading: What Medicine Do You Take For Herpes
Home Remedies And Lifestyle
There are some things that you can do at home to lessen the pain of a cold sore or genital herpes, prevent worsening of your condition, and reduce the risk of spreading the infection to others.
- Apply cold compresses: Place a well-insulated ice pack on your lesions for as long as it makes you feel better. The cold will not worsen or improve the lesion, but it can lessen the pain.
- Dont scratch: Avoid touching and scratching lesions caused by herpes, as this can spread the infection to other areas of your own skin.
- Keep the sores clean: Cold sores and genital herpes infections can become infected with bacteria from your hands or, in the latter case, from urine or feces. Keep the sores and blisters, and the areas around them, clean and dry to avoid an additional infection.
- Reduce stress: Stress can affect how well your immune system can keep your herpes infection in check. Reducing your stress may help prevent excessive herpes recurrences.
Can I Treat Herpes Simplex At Home
Avoiding known triggers, such as illness or stress, can help reduce how often you have herpes outbreaks.
How can I ease my symptoms during an outbreak of HSV-1 ?
- Over-the-counter creams such as L-lysine, benzocaine or docosanol .
- Applying ice to blisters or sores.
How can I ease my symptoms during an outbreak of HSV-2 ?
- Apply an ice pack to your genitals. Wrap the ice pack in a washcloth or apply it over your underwear.
- Keep your genitals dry. Wear cotton or other nonsynthetic underpants and avoid tight-fitting clothes. Moist sores take longer to heal.
- Soak in a warm bath.
- Take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to relieve pain.
- Topical 1% or 2% lidocaine may be used as a topical analgesic.
Also Check: Quickest Way To Get Rid Of Herpes Outbreak