Genital Herpes: Know the Signs, Avoid the Infection, Don’t Let It Catch You

This is the most frequently seen infection among people. The Herpes Simplex Virus is seen in two forms, type one and two. Herpes Simplex one is normally found around the mouth and lip area, which are also referred to as cold sores. Type two is found in the genital area and anus and is the type that is referred to as genital herpes. Genital herpes, type two, can be caused by herpes type one. This is mainly due to the fact that more and more people are having more oral sex.

Genital herpes is a virus that is caused by the well know Herpes Simplex Virus

A person that is diagnosed of having Herpes Simplex Virus will always have the virus lying dormant in their body

The virus travels along the nerves to affect different areas of the body. The dormant version travels along the nerves when they are activated and affects the body on the surface of the skin. Genital herpes takes anywhere from 2-12 days to show signs of infection after contact has been made. In some cases, genital herpes may take months and even years to activate after infection. In more severe cases, genital herpes can have recurrent appearances which is what occurs in most affected people. This is when the person will see a herpes outbreak in their genital area on a regular basis. Some mild cases cause people to never have an outbreak or the outbreak occurs once every couple of years or when a person’s body is really stressed. The outbreaks in people varied so greatly because everyone’s body reacts differently to the virus.

Genital herpes is very common among Australians

In Australia, 1 in every 8 people have genital herpes and about 85 percent of the people carry HSV1 but only about 20 percent carry HSV type 2. Genital herpes is not common in only one gender. Women are just as common to have genital herpes as men are in Australia. According to studies, the age range of people more prevalent to having genital herpes are adult men and women around the age of 35-44 years old. It is seen that men and women living in the metropolitan areas of Australia are more seen to have genital herpes then the men and women living in rural areas. There is an even greater spike in prevalence among people who are indigenous versus the people who are not in an indigenous community.

The transmission of genital herpes is through skin to skin contact with a person who is infected with the virus

Transmission normally occurs during sexual interaction regardless if it is anal, vaginal or oral. An important fact to keep in mind is that transmission may occur even if no penetration has occurred but skin to skin contact did take place.

In Australia, researchers are finding that genital herpes are being transmitted by people who do not know that they have the virus. This is largely due to people having the virus lie dormant in their body and they have never had any symptoms of having the infection or the symptoms were so minor that they were almost unnoticeable. Consequently, there are about 80 percent of people who have genital herpes that are unaware that they carry the virus and unintentionally pass on the virus to their sexual partners. This is clear evidence that people must take the proper precautions to prevent the transmission of genital herpes by using protection as their sexual partner may not know that they have the infection.

Some people like to be proactive and request a blood test to see if that have any previous HSV exposure

Regardless of the test results received from a blood test, it is advised that people practice safe sex as a blood test is not as accurate in assessing the risk of having HSV or not.

People who find out that they have been infected with the genital herpes virus are scared and have many questions about what to do next. It is important that someone infected with genital herpes gather as much information as possible and understand the virus so that they can make the best treatment options and manage the virus further through safe sex and minimizing recurrences. It is highly advised that a person consults a counselor to maintain mental stability and to give themselves time to understand what is going on and their options.