As a fact, we have lots of it in our bodies. Hence, we get them from hosts such as humans or animals. They are not living things, but they can multiply themselves in their host. Also, not all viruses are harmful, but some live in us. But others can harm and even kill us. The virus that infects our body is a harmful one. For instance, deadly viruses that can kill us are Ebola, influenza, and Covid-19. Such viruses have roamed around the world and killed millions of people. A wise defense against viruses is to know them. Learning its cause, signs, effects, and treatment is a need. Many get fooled by misconceptions about genital herpes. Therefore, it is best to know these important facts.
The virus is the cause of genital herpes. There are two types of the virus. First is the HSV-1 that causes sores around the lips and mouth. Additionally, kissing or sharing saliva allows the transmission of the virus. Second is herpes simplex two or HSV-2. In this type, sores are around the genitals or rectum. The passing of the virus happens during sex.
1. The virus goes through the skin crack, mouth’s lining, or genital area. After it goes inside the body, it multiplies itself.
2. The passing of the virus happens even when there are no signs. Also, even someone who does not have sores can still pass on the virus.
3. One out of three adults can have the virus. Having the virus is common. Anyone who had sex can get the illness. Hence, there are about 3.7 billion people below 50 years old with the first type of the virus. Also, there are 491 million people aged 15-49 who have the type 2 virus.
4. The infection is lifelong. Hence, the virus is permanent in the body. There is no cure. However, there are medications to prevent and shorten outbreaks.
5. Signs of genital herpes are either severe, mild, or none.
Examples of signs are:
- Body pain
- Pain when urinating
- Itching and pain in genitals
- Swollen lymph nodes (for men)
- For female, unusual vaginal discharge may occur.
- Sores on the genital area
6. Mostly, those who are infected do not know that they have the virus. A study says that 80% of those infected do not know that they have the virus. Moreover, genital, and oral herpes infections do not show signs. So, they do not know if they are passing the virus to their partners.
7. Oral herpes causes half of the genital herpes cases. This happens through oral-genital contact.
8. Condoms do not end the risk. However, it reduces the risk of herpes simplex 2. But there are still infected parts that are not covered by the condom.
9. Doctors advise daily medication.
Doing this will prevent reoccurrence. It will also lessen the transmission of the herpes simplex virus.
10. The virus dies if it is not in a living cell.
It does live a short life without its host. Do not worry about getting herpes from washing machines, showers, or swimming pools. Chances of getting herpes from such things are low. It is safe to live with an infected person, except for sexual contact.
11. There is still no vaccine for genital herpes.
While other viruses have a vaccine, experts say that this virus is complex. Hence, like other sexual diseases its needs more studies to find the cure.
13. Herpes does not affect the ability to bear a child.
It is wrong to say that people with herpes cannot have kids. Women with herpes can still have a normal delivery. It is best to inform doctors to take precautions.
Lactating mothers can still do breastfeed. But avoid breastfeeding if there are herpes sore on the breast.
14. Herpes is not in the blood.
Those who have the virus can still donate their blood.
15. It is rare to have herpes in two different areas.
Our bodies form a defense to stop this from happening. If you have genital herpes, do not panic. Do not let your emotional stress be greater than the symptoms. Having this virus has an impact on couples. Infected people find it hard on how they will tell their partners about it. The best thing to do is to be open to them about it. It will help them understand the case. The surest way to avoid genital herpes is to avoid sex. Do not have sex with someone other than your partner. Aside from preventing infection, this will also stop transmission.