What is herpes?
Herpes is the name of a group of viruses that painful blisters and sores. Most people have no symptoms or only mild symptoms. The infection can cause painful blisters or ulcers that can recur over time. Medicines can reduce symptoms but can’t cure the infection.
There are two types of herpes simplex virus:
This causes chickenpox and shingles.
Herpes simplex virus (HSV) type 1 and type 2:
Type 1 usually causes cold sores or fever blisters around the mouth. Type 2 usually causes sores on the (sexual organs). Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted infection (STI). once you are infected, you have the virus for the rest of your life.
Symptoms of this virus:
Many people who get herpes never have symptoms. Sometimes the symptoms are mild and are mistaken for another skin condition. Symptoms of genital herpes may include:
Painful sores in the genital area, anus, buttock, or thighs
During the first outbreak (called primary herpes) you may experience the following:
Swollen lymph nodes near the infection
Sore throat (oral herpes)
Ingrown hairs vs. herpes
Ingrown hairs tend to appear individually, centered over a hair follicle. Herpes blisters tend to form in clusters that include multiple blisters close together. While both types of sores may be painful, ingrown hairs grow to resolve within a few days or less than a week. Learn more about weight loss and related drugs.
Stages of infection
Once you have been infected with the virus, you’ll go through different stages of infection.
This stage starts 2 to 8 days after you’re infected. Usually, the infection causes a group of small, painful blisters. The fluid in the blisters may be clear or cloudy, and the area under the blisters will be red. The blisters then break open and become open sores. You may not notice the blisters, or they may be painful. It may hurt to urinate during this stage. While most people have a painful primary stage of infection, some don’t have any symptoms.
During this stage, there are no blisters, sores, or other symptoms. The virus travels from your skin into the nerves near your spine.
In the shedding stage, the virus starts multiplying in the nerve endings. If these nerve endings are in areas of the body that make or are in contact with body fluids, the virus can get into those body fluids. This could include saliva, semen, or vaginal fluids. There are no symptoms during this stage, but the virus can be spread during this time. This means that herpes is very contagious during this stage. To get information about COVID rash.
Herpes and pregnancy
It’s important to avoid getting herpes during pregnancy. If your partner has herpes and you don’t have it, be sure to always use condoms during sexual intercourse. Your partner could pass the infection to you even if they are not currently experiencing an outbreak. If there are visible sores, avoid having sex completely until the sores have healed.
If you are pregnant and have genital herpes stages, or if you have ever had sex with someone who had it, tell your doctor. The doctor will give you an antiviral medicine to start taking toward the end of your pregnancy.
Understand that you can pass herpes to your baby if you have an active genital herpes infection at or near the time of delivery. When the baby passes through the birth canal, it may come in contact with sores and become infected with the virus.
Tips on dealing with herpes
Talk to your doctor if you think you may have herpes
Remember you’re not alone. Millions of people have herpes
Keep yourself healthy and limit your stress
Don’t touch your sores
Tell your sex partner and use condoms
Scope of the problem
In 2016 (last available estimates), 3.7 billion people under the age of 50, or 67% of the global population had HSV-1 infection (oral or genital). Most HSV-1 infections are acquired during childhood.
Genital herpes caused by HSV-2 affects an estimated 491 million (13%) people aged 15-49 years worldwide 2016 data. HSV-2 infects women almost twice as often as men because sexual transmission is more efficient from men to women. Prevalence increases with age, though the highest number of new infections are in adolescents.
Herpes infection treatment
If you think you have herpes, see you as soon as possible. It’s easier to diagnose when there are sores. You can start treatment sooner and perhaps have less pain with the infection. There’s no cure for herpes. But medicine can help. They may be provided as a pill, cream, or a shot. Medicines such as acyclovir and valacyclovir fight the herpes virus. They can speed up healing and lessen the pain of herpes for many people. They can be used to treat a primary outbreak.
I am a medical student. I researched herpes stages.