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Herpes Simplex Virus: Signs, Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

What is Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV)?

The term herpes simplex attributes itself to a kind of infection triggered by the virus of the same name. Its main types include HSV-1 as well as the HSV-2. The first type of HSV is often referred to as oral herpes. Meanwhile, the second type is characterized by herpes in the genital region. These types are responsible for the outbreaks of sores and painful inflammations either in the mouth or the genitals.

Some forms of this illness are often connected with the following:

  • Herpes affecting the eyes – especially the cornea
  • Herpes affecting the brain – infecting most parts of the organ
  • Herpetic whitlow – the appearance of lesions on some parts of the hands
  • Herpes affecting the newborn

HSV Types

As aforementioned, two HSV types are recognized. Discover how these types are infectious and how these are controlled.

HSV-1

Essentially referred to as the type that triggers painful blisters in the mouth, HSV-1 can still bring about herpes in the genital area. How does this happen? It’s when an infected individual performs oral sex when he/she active sores in the mouth. Other sources of transmission include:

  • Kissing
  • Lip balm sharing
  • Using one utensil during meals
  • Using one toothbrush

It is important to understand the if there are enough secretions and sores underlying the skin, possible transmission is likely to occur.

HSV-2

Predominantly affecting the sexual organs of the body, HSV-2 applies to the term genital herpes. Whether it be the anal or genital area, herpes can still possibly infect and stay active. Its means of transmission include:

  • Any sexual activity that involves the vagina, penis, and anus.
  • Childbirth or delivery – any pregnant woman who has active genital herpes

Understand that this second type of HSV is at its chronic level. To alleviate its negative effects, strict observance of its medications is a must. Additionally, making use of condoms or other protective barriers helps to make the infection lessen.

Herpes Simplex Virus Signs and Symptoms

Once the virus has penetrated the body, some people are possible to stay asymptomatic. However, if individuals show symptoms, the following can be experienced:

  • Fever and chills
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Mild headache
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Painful sores (emerging on the mouth and genitals)
  • Extreme red sores
  • Bleeding sores
  • Urination problem
  • Pain during sexual activity
  • Soreness of the genitals
  • Skin lesions
  • Inflamed blisters
  • Itching sensation
  • The burning pain of the penis or surface of the vagina
  • Eye infection – sensitivity to light

The aforementioned reactions related to HSV can become serious and hostile if medications are not given immediately. Once these effects occur to you, it is highly suggested to discuss with your physician immediately. If you happened to have sex without using condoms, you better know your condition at once and obtain the required treatment.

Knowing Your Risk

In order to get infected with HSV, one must have direct physical contact with a person who has the infection. For the first type of HSV, an individual must be having oral contact with other individuals to acquire the infection. As for the second type, unprotected sex is what opens doors for the virus to penetrate and cause an infection.

Note that the infection does not require someone to be at the right age to get infected. Whatever your age is, you are a sure possibility of HSV once you have been exposed to it. This explains the higher capacity of sexually active people to acquire the infection. Always remember that sexual intercourse without a protective barrier means a possible infection involving HSV. Other forms of risk chances of this disease are:

  • STI or STD – sexually transmitted infection/disease
  • Various sexual partners (whether it be males or females)
  • The immune system has been severely impaired
  • Childbirth and delivery
  • Blood transfusion

Treatment

Since not all diseases have a cure, most especially HSV, various treatments are accessible for purchase following a physician’s prescription. Whatever the infection is, oral tablets and topical creams can be used to provide medical relief to individuals suffering the mentioned infection.

For herpes, these medicines include:

  • Acyclovir
  • Famciclovir
  • Valacyclovir

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