Herpes may not be a considered as a serious health concern, but these cold sores and blisters are definitely a lifelong concern. Herpetic lesions cannot be cured permanently, however, experts like Best Skin specialist in Lahore recommend measures which help in dealing with the condition. Read on to know more about living with herpes:
What is herpes simplex?
Herpes simplex is a common virus, and a large percentage of people around the world, harbor this virus in their bodies. The two main strains types of this virus include: HSV-1 and HSV-2. Depending on the region of the body they infect, they can cause cold sores and blisters to appear. Commonly, type 1 is associated with oral infections, while type 2 causes genital infections.
What are the causes of herpes simplex?
The two types of herpetic viruses cause herpes simplex. This highly contagious infection can spread through skin-to-skin contact, or direct contact with the blister fluid. Even without an active infection, the carrier may shed the virus and transmit it to another person.
Kissing, having sex, sharing utensils and razors are other common causes of virus transmission. After the initial infection, the virus sits dormant in the body, and occasionally recurs later on. The frequency of this recurrence varies from individual to individual, with higher recurrence in people with immunocompromised states.
Manifestation of herpes simplex includes painful blisters around the oral and the genital region. Without the appearance of these cold sores, a person may not even know they are infected, and the disease can go undiagnosed for a long period. When the symptoms do occur, they include itching, tingling and burning sensation in the region of the sores. These symptoms are also common in recurrent infection.
How to live with herpes simplex?
As mentioned before, herpes simplex stays dormant inside the body for life. After diagnosis, people can feel embarrassed, upset and even ashamed. However, with time and treatment, this disease is quite manageable.
Millions of people around the world have herpes simplex, and have experienced an outbreak at one point of their life. Even though it is not a deadly disease, the symptoms can be painful and annoying. The best thing to do when diagnosed with herpes simplex is to follow the directions of the healthcare provider, to manage the symptoms, treat the virus and decrease the chances of transmissibility.
According to experts, the first step in managing herpes simplex is to enquire about treatment. Once treatment is begun, a follow-up visit is recommended. In this follow-up, your healthcare provider will ask you how you are coping after the diagnosis. They may recommend getting into a support group or therapy if you are having difficulty dealing with your emotions.
Once the treatment plan is set, the patient should focus on themselves and their sexual partner. Open communication is a must when dealing with herpes simplex. In addition, experts recommend taking measures to reduce the risk of transmission during sexual contact. These include:
- Always using protection, especially during periods of active infection.
- Taking daily antivirals can help reduce the shedding of the virus, and even decrease the recurrence rate of the disease. Daily dose of antivirals should only be taken if your healthcare provider permits. As with any medication, there are side-effects and antivirals should only be used if there are no complications seen.
- Healthcare experts recommend leading a healthy lifestyle to boost their immune system, which helps to suppress the virus. Eating healthy and working out are the essentials of healthy lifestyle.
- Learning how to cope with stress is another way to prevent recurrence of herpes simplex, as stressful situations can cause herpetic lesions to appear.
Herpes diagnosis can be scary at first. However, with timely management and treatment by Skin specialist in Karachi, it can be easily dealt with. In time, the outbreaks of herpes simplex become less frequent and less severe, and you may even stop having them altogether.