If you believe you may have herpes simplex or have been diagnosed and are in need of treatment our team of professionals at Pinnacle Dermatology & Skin Rejuvenation can help. For an improvement in your everyday life and for a sense of wellbeing, you can count on us for thorough and professional treatment.
What is Herpes Simplex?
The herpes simplex virus (HSV) is an infection that causes herpes. HSV is a contagious virus that can be spread from person to person or through direct contact. There are two main categories of herpes simplex viruses, including herpes type 1 (HSV-1, oral herpes) and herpes type 2 (HSV-2, genital herpes).
HSV-1: This form of herpes can be contracted from interactions with others such as sharing lipstick or lip balm, sharing drinking glasses, and kissing. The virus will spread more quickly during an outbreak.
HSV-2: This form of herpes is contracted through sexual contact with a person who is infected with HSV-2.Infections are spread through contact with a herpes sore. Individuals with multiple sex partners, who have other sexually transmitted diseases, or who have a weakened immune system have a higher risk for contracting this form of herpes.
Common signs and symptoms of herpes simplex include:
- Painful blistering sores in the mouth or on the genitals.
- Swollen lymph nodes.
- Lack of appetite.
With herpes, some people may experience regular outbreaks, while others only experience one outbreak when they contract the virus. However, even if the virus is dormant in the body, there are certain things that may trigger an outbreak like stress, fever or illness, menstrual periods, or sunburn.
Herpes Simplex Treatment Options
There is no current cure for herpes simplex, however, there are treatment options to manage symptoms. These may include medications such as acyclovir, valacyclovir, or famciclovir to reduce the severity of outbreaks and the risk of spreading the virus to others.
Tips for Preventing the Spread of Herpes Simplex
There are certain steps that you can take to avoid contracting herpes, or if you have already been diagnosed with herpes, spreading it to other people. For those with HSV-1 should avoid direct physical contact with people, do not share towels, cups, plates, silverware, makeup, or lip balm with others. Also, do not partake in kissing or sexual activity during an outbreak. Individuals with HSV-2 should not partake in any form of sexual activity with others during an outbreak. Women who are pregnant and have this infection may have to take certain medications to prevent the virus from infecting their unborn babies.