The Herpes Simplex Virus
There are two types of herpes simplex virus , type 1 and type 2. Both types are highly contagious and can be passed easily from one person to another by direct contact. Genital herpes is usually transmitted by having sex with an infected person. Even if someone with genital herpes does not have any symptoms, it is possible for them to pass the condition on to a sexual partner.
At least 8 out of 10 people who carry the virus are unaware they have been infected because there are often few or no initial symptoms. However, certain triggers can activate the virus, causing an outbreak of genital herpes.
Read more about the causes of genital herpes.
Antiviral Tablets To Stop The Herpes Virus Multiplying
Antiviral medicines taken by mouth, such as valaciclovir or acyclovir, are the most effective in controlling symptoms, although they cant cure genital herpes. They stop the virus from multiplying in body cells where the virus is present. The medicine only works while you are taking it. The infection can come back when you stop taking it.
Antiviral tablets are used in the following two ways:
- To treat outbreaks as they happen : The aim is to shorten the time each outbreak lasts and to relieve symptoms. This works best when taken as soon as you get symptoms and before the blisters appear.
- To prevent or reduce recurrences : If you get frequent or severe recurrent outbreaks, your doctor may recommend you take antiviral tablets every day to help prevent recurrences. Suppressive therapy is taken continuously, every day, for months or years. Suppressive antiviral therapy may help reduce the risk of transmitting the virus to sexual partners.
Antiviral creams bought over the counter from the pharmacy are not recommended as a treatment for a first episode or recurrent genital herpes as they are of little benefit. Antiviral tablets are the preferred treatment.
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How To Diagnose Herpes On The Buttocks
Prior to receiving a diagnosis, the healthcare professional will need to examine and ask about the symptoms you are having. Once all of those symptoms are recorded, the following are performed:
- A complete physical exam
- Aside from examining your buttocks, the healthcare professional will likely check other parts of your body to know if there are other symptoms developed, such as blisters or bumps.
- Taking a fluid sample
- To properly confirm the diagnosis, a series of tests are conducted, such as taking a fluid sample. The sample is taken from the fluid-filled blisters. The sample is then taken to the laboratory.
- Aside from taking a fluid sample, a blood sample is also extracted from the patient. This test is performed to know if the virus is present in the blood. In most scenarios, a blood test is the most accurate approach to know someones infection.
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How Can I Stop Cold Sores From Forming
So you nipped your last cold sore flare-up in the bud , and it lasted less than a week but here you are, just a few months later, and the cold sores are back. Thereâs good news, and then thereâs bad news. Letâs start with the bad news.
âOnce a person is infected with herpes simplex virus, he or she is infected for life,â says Dr. Brown. âAfter a cold sore heals, the virus isnât actually cleared from your body. Instead, the virus travels back into your nerves, where it can lie dormant for long periods of time. When the virus reemerges, it typically does so in the same spot as before.â
So what triggers the virus to reactivate and cause a flare-up?
Dr. Brown says that a cold sore outbreak can be triggered by:
Treatment For Shingles On Buttocks
As soon as you notice you are experiencing early signs of the disease, you should seek treatment for shingles on the buttocks. Antivirals can be prescribed to facilitate a speedy recovery.
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Painkillers or a prescription strength topical ointment can be recommended or prescribed as needed. If you experience reoccurring episodes of shingles, a doctor may recommend that your intake daily antivirals as a preventative measure. Keeping a wound dry, clean, and dressed can encourage a swift healing process and alleviate symptoms naturally as much as possible.
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Is There A Cure For Herpes
There is no cure for herpes, but the virus tends to cause the most symptoms during the first few years. After that, while herpes does not go away entirely, it usually causes mild to no symptoms.
When the virus is active, people can take medications to help reduce and prevent symptoms. Antiviral medicines may be prescribed to help reduce symptoms of genital herpes or oral herpes and speed up the healing of an outbreak, such as:
What Are The Signs Of Herpes In Children
The herpes virus can be spread to babies and children if they are kissed by someone that is infected and has active cold sores. Although rare, it is also possible to spread herpes to a child or infant by touch if a person touches their cold sore and then touches the baby or child.
Precautions can be taken to protect infants and other children from getting the virus. Avoid kissing children if you have a cold sore and ask other people not to as well. Wash your hands frequently if you have a cold sore and you are around children.
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Do Natural Remedies Help
There are several options that can be tried to ease the pain. A73612 and Donnor52059 suggest dabbing cornstarch directly on the sores. I can’t find any scientific studies that have researched this, but I can’t see that it would do any harm.
A73612 also recommends squirting water from a bottle over the sores when you pee. This is a time-honoured method that will help to ease the pain.
Yolandayw mentioned taking a simple painkiller such as paracetamol during an outbreak. Feelbroken advised putting Vaseline on the sores. Lidocaine 5%, a local anaesthetic gel that numbs the area, is another option. Some people find it helpful to put on five minutes before passing urine. You need to get it on prescription and it doesn’t suit everyone. Some people develop sensitivity to it which makes the symptoms worse.
Yolandayw also advised using ice as a home remedy. Simply wrap the ice in a tea towel and apply for 5-10 minutes. Never put ice directly on the skin as this can cause ‘ice burn’. Drinking plenty of water can also be helpful as it reduces the concentration of urine, making it less painful when you have to pee.
What About Chlamydia The Most Common Std
Chlamydia is caused by bacteria, whereas herpes is caused by a virus. This is why chlamydia is easily treated and cured with antibiotics. However, many people have chlamydia and dont know it because they don’t have any symptoms. That’s why people who are at higher risk of chlamydia, including sexually active young women and men who have sex with other men, are advised to get a test for chlamydia every year.
If you don’t treat chlamydia, it can increase the chances of both men and women getting or giving HIV and AIDS, according to Medline Plus. Untreated chlamydia can also cause serious pelvic inflammatory disease in women, which can lead to infertility, and in men it can spread to the testicles and the tube that carries sperm, causing inflammation.
Screening for chlamydia is usually done by taking a urine sample or a swab from your genitals. Results of these tests are usually found quickly. Different testing methods are used for infections of the rectum and throat, and these take more time.
While the only way to completely avoid getting chlamydia or herpes is to not have sex, you can reduce your chances of getting both by being in a long-term, mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who is not infected with an STD and by using latex condoms every time you have sex.
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Is There Anything I Can Do To Prevent Recurrent Outbreaks
It is not well understood what reactivates the herpes virus symptoms to recur. The triggers may include:
- Friction or trauma in the genital area
- Exposure to ultraviolet light
- Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol
- Having a weakened immune system
A healthy lifestyle, such as a good diet, getting enough sleep and rest, exercise, and reducing stress may help limit the number of outbreaks. Using a water based lubricant during sexual intercourse can help to reduce friction and skin irriation that may trigger an outbreak in some people.
How Do Dermatologists Diagnose Herpes Simplex
During an outbreak, your dermatologist often can diagnose herpes simplex by looking at the sores. To confirm the diagnosis, the dermatologist may take a swab from a visible sore and send this swab to a laboratory. Other medical tests, such as a blood test, can detect the herpes simplex virus when sores are not present.
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What Causes Herpes Simplex
Herpes simplex is caused by one of two types of herpes simplex virus , members of the Herpesvirales family of double-stranded DNA viruses.
- Type 1 HSV is mainly associated with oral and facial infections
- Type 2 HSV is mainly associated with genital and rectal infections
However, either virus can affect almost any area of skin or mucous membrane.
After the primary episode of infection, HSV resides in a latent state in spinal dorsal root nerves that supply sensation to the skin. During a recurrence, the virus follows the nerves onto the skin or mucous membranes, where it multiplies, causing the clinical lesion. After each attack and lifelong, it enters the resting state.
During an attack, the virus can be inoculated into new sites of skin, which can then develop blisters as well as the original site of infection.
Treatment The First Time You Have Genital Herpes
You may be prescribed:
- antiviral medicine to stop the symptoms getting worse you need to start taking this within 5 days of the symptoms appearing
- cream for the pain
If you have had symptoms for more than 5 days before you go to a sexual health clinic, you can still get tested to find out the cause.
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Is There A Cure For Herpes Simplex
There is no cure for herpes simplex. Once you have the virus, its a lifelong infection.
What is the outlook for people with herpes simplex?
For many people, the first herpes outbreak is the most severe. Many outbreaks are less frequent and milder after the first year of infection. Some people may have only one outbreak and never have another again.
Preventing The Spread Of Herpes
Even when you do not have sores, you can pass the virus to someone during sexual or other close contact. To protect others:
- Let any sexual partner know that you have herpes before having sex. Allow them to decide what to do.
- Use latex or polyurethane condoms, and avoid sex during symptomatic outbreaks.
- Do not kiss or have oral sex when you have a sore on the lips or inside the mouth.
- Do not share your towels, toothbrush, or lipstick. Make sure dishes and utensils you use are washed well with detergent before others use them.
- Wash your hands well with soap and water after touching a sore.
- Consider using daily antiviral medicine to limit viral shedding and reduce the risk of passing the virus to your partner.
- You may also want to consider getting your partner tested even if they have never had an outbreak. If you both have the herpes virus, there is no risk for transmission.
Fever Blisters And Cold Sores Are Oral Herpes Too
Fever blisters and cold sores are just different names for oral herpes, and theyve been around for a very long time. Legend has it that in ancient Rome, the emperor Tiberius banned kissing at public events because of an outbreak of fever blisters. In other words, they even knew back then how contagious fever blisters are.
The best way to protect yourself is to avoid contact with a person who has a cold sore and refrain from sharing eating utensils, lip balm, and the like. Note that someone with oral herpes can give you genital herpes if they perform oral sex on you. Avoid kissing and oral sex when outbreaks are present.
There is no cure for fever blisters and no vaccine to prevent them, although research into preventing and treating them is ongoing. If you do get oral herpes, your doctor may recommend over-the-counter pain medication and topical anesthetics to relieve symptoms. Some people also choose to take antiviral medication to make cold sores go away faster.
Easy Herpes Pain Relief Tips
While herpes has no cure, even though there are methods to stop outbreaks, there are none that are totally fool-proof. The following tips can help relieve your herpes pain and discomfort.
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How Can I Lower My Chance Of Passing Or Getting Herpes
Condoms offer good protection, but do not completely prevent the spread of herpes because they do not cover the whole genital area. Condoms can also be used on sex toys. Abstain from sex or avoid skin-to-skin contact in the area of the herpes sores if you are sexual during an outbreak. Dental dams can also be used as a barrier during oral sex. Talk to your health care provider about suppressive therapy to help prevent passing the virus to your partner. Wash your hands if you have touched the blisters to prevent transferring the virus to another person . Talk to your partner about herpes before you have sexual contact.
Symptoms Of Genital Herpes
Many people who have genital herpes may not be aware they have the infection, because they may not have any symptoms.
The first episode of herpes can cause considerable pain and distress. Symptoms of the first episode may include:
- flu-like symptoms such as feeling unwell, headaches and pains in the back and legs, with or without enlarged glands in the groin
- small blisters around the genitals these break open to form shallow, painful ulcers, which scab over and heal after one to two weeks
- small cracks in the skin with or without an itch or tingling
- redness or a distinct rash
- some people also have considerable pain and swelling in the genital area, and hence may have additional pain and difficulty passing urine.
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What Are Recurrences Of Herpes And How Likely Are They
Recurrences are repeat symptoms which appear at or close to the place where the infection was first noticed. These are often fairly minor and may be no more than a small spot that heals in a few days. They may be accompanied by sensations itches or nerve twinges. They are unlikely to be as severe as first symptoms and may be almost unnoticed.
Can I Use Abreva On Genital Herpes
- 30 Oct 2011 by Rachel_Marie22
Abreva is indicated for the treatment of cold sores around the mouth caused by Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1. Abreva is not to be used on genital herpes which is most commonly caused by Herpes Simplex Virus Type 2
There is no medication to cure your body of the genital herpes virus. Treatment is aimed at easing symptoms, reducing the frequency of recurrences and reducing transmission.
Symptoms can be improved by:
salt bathsice packs to the affected areapain-relieving medication such as acetaminophenantiviral medication such as acyclovir, famciclovir and valacyclovir. These can reduce the severity of an episode if taken early enough .
Topical antivirals like Abreva usually used for cold sores on the lips or face are not appropriate for use on the genitals.
For more information see:
If you have HSV-1 genitally, I donÃ¢t see why not. Of course as with anything you put on the skin, test it somewhere else beforehand. For those who are saying no you canÃ¢t because HSV-2 causes genital herpes and HSV-1 causes cold sores, they are not 100% correct . While most cases of oral herpes is HSV-1, itÃ¢s possible for them to be caused by HSV-2. There are also more cases of HSV-1 being found in the genital region, possibly due to the decreased number of people having HSV-1 orally say in childhood. HSV is NOT a site-specific virus .
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