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Shingles Vs Herpes

shingles vs herpes

Shingles Vs Herpes. Two of the most common skin conditions are shingles and herpes. They share symptoms and appearances but are different regarding their causes and complications. Let us learn how these conditions differ. Let us discover what type of treatment is needed in alleviating these skin conditions.

Differences Between Shingles and Herpes


Signs and Symptoms

One of the best ways to know the difference between these conditions is by identifying the specific symptoms. Review the following list of signs associated with herpes and shingles.


  • Skin inflammation
  • Blisters
  • Skin sores
  • Itchiness
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Mild headache
  • Skin rashes
  • Numbness of the skin



  • Tingling of the skin
  • Skin inflammation
  • Skin ulcers
  • Painful blisters
  • Red or white bumps
  • Headache


What triggers these conditions?

Different types of viruses trigger shingles and herpes. The varicella-zoster virus is the main reason why shingles develop. Meanwhile, the herpes simplex virus triggers infectious herpes.

People may find shingles and chickenpox similar. However, chickenpox can precede shingles. Even with treatment, the virus that triggers shingles can remain inside the body. This is the same thing with herpes. When outbreaks happen, the virus reactivates, and symptoms appear.


The healthcare professional will identify your condition by looking at the blisters or sores present on your skin. However, if the healthcare professional needs more assessment, a lab test may be necessary.

Meanwhile, in diagnosing herpes, the healthcare professional will ask you to undergo specific lab tests. These tests will tell if the virus is present in your bloodstream. Besides the tests, the healthcare professional will also do a physical exam to look for more symptoms, especially on the genitals.


These skin conditions require antiviral treatment; however, home remedies are also available to prevent outbreaks and reoccurrence of these infections.

In treating herpes, some widely used drugs are Acyclovir and Famciclovir. These drugs help inhibit the virus from replicating and blocking them from causing more health complications. Since these are prescription drugs, you can only use them after obtaining a prescription from a healthcare professional.

For treating shingles, you can use the same drugs to lessen the severity of the conditions. However, a prescription is still necessary. Besides these drugs, you can also use patches and pain relievers to alleviate these skin conditions’ inflammation and discomfort.


Herpes is a sexually transmitted infection. Therefore, the best way to prevent it is by practicing safe sex and using condoms.

On the other hand, keeping your immune system healthy is the best way to prevent shingles from developing. Take regular showers and avoid sharing personal items with someone who has shingles. Hygiene plays a significant role in preventing infections from occurring.

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