Herpes: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and Prevention

Herpes: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and Prevention
Herpes: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and Prevention


Herpes occurs from infection with the herpes simplex virus (HSV). It leads to blisters or sores developing in or around the genitals or mouth as well as some other symptoms. There are two kinds of HSV: HSV-2 leads to genital herpes that is normally sexually transmitted. HSV-1 leads to oral herpes that normally affects your mouth and the surrounding area. If an individual is having an HSV infection, they will have them for the rest of their life, even though some individuals never have symptoms. If symptoms develop, they show the kind of HSV. There is no treatment for herpes but, a cure might aid in managing symptoms and lower the likelihood of them occurring again.

HSV is the most occurring virus. Around 67% of individuals, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) worldwide, have HSV-1 infection, and 11% have an HSV-2 infection. Herpes simplex virus (HSV) type 2 and type 1. Type 1 normally leads to fever blisters or cold sores around your mouth. Type 2 normally leads to sores on the genitals (sexual organs). But it might be possible to have type 1 around your mouth and type 2 on the genitals. Herpes zoster leads to shingles and chickenpox. Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted infection (STI). Each time you are infected, you have these viruses for the rest of your life. (1)

You can contract or transmit oral herpes or HSV-1, through direct contact with saliva, herpes sore, or other bodily secretions during an episode. If you are dismissing the virus, someone might contract it by direct contact with the area of infection. Examples of direct exposure consist of:

  • Oral sex
  • Kissing
  • Another skin-to-skin contact

Therefore, if you feel a partner’s cold sore and then feel your genitals or own face shortly afterward, you can contract the virus. Most children contract the virus after being touched or kissed on the face by an adult person having a cold sore. The virus might be transmitted by razors, shared lip balm, or eating utensils and drinkware but this is quite a rate. However, older estimates recommend the virus might only live outside of your body for a few days to a few hours. If someone has a cold sore drink from a glass and suddenly hands it to you, and then you put your mouth to that place on the glass, you might significantly contract herpes. But the risk of occurring is quite low.

Most of the time, the virus is transmitted by contact with sores or the area of infection while viral shedding. Therefore, with HSV-1, you might contract or transmit HSV-2, or even genital herpes by contact directly with saliva, herpes sore, or other secretions of the body during an episode. HSV-2 might also transmit while viral shedding. Directly contact may consist of:

  • Oral sex
  • Kissing
  • Penetrative sex
  • Sharing sex toys while a sexual encounter
  • Another skin-to-skin contact at the site of infection

Therefore, many people assume HSV-2 as genital herpes and HSV-1 as oral herpes. Both kinds of viruses might lead to genital or oral episodes.

1Herpes on all body parts such as (Lips, Mouth, Tongue, Buttocks, Hands)

Herpes on all body parts such as (Lips, Mouth, Tongue, Buttocks, Hands)
Herpes on all body parts such as (Lips, Mouth, Tongue, Buttocks, Hands)

Herpes simplex virus (HSV) might lead to infections that can affect your face, mouth, genitals, buttocks, skin, and anal area. It is one of the most occurring chronic viral infections in people. The occurrence of HSV-1 (oral herpes) infection is almost 67% of adults across the world and is increasing more than the occurrence of HSV-2 (genital herpes). One of the two herpes simplex viruses (HSV-2 and HSV-1) is most occurring by HSV-1. The virus stays deep in the nerve roots and might be reactive at a later time, leading to the same signs and symptoms in the same area.

Cold sores (herpes labialis) normally go away within 1 to 2 weeks but they might be cured with antiviral medications such as topical or acyclovir antiviral creams like docosanol (Abreva), to lower pain and minimize the healing time. Herpes simplex virus (HSV) might lead to infections.  Most individuals acquire viruses and have no signs or symptoms. For others, painfully full of fluid small blisters occur near the site where the virus entered your body. Normally, the blisters completely heal but might reoccur at some point in the future. In between attacks, the virus stays deep in the roots of the nerves where the area is involved. (2)

It might also lead to sores inside your nose and surrounding the nostrils. Herpes might also affect your eye. When herpes simplex flare-ups occur in the most occurring location, surrounding your chin, mouth, and upper lip, people sometimes refer to them as fever blisters or cold sores. Oral herpes might lead to fluid-filled blisters, ulcers, or sores anywhere inside your mouth, consisting of the tongue and the gums. Primary herpes means the initial outbreak of signs after infection, sometimes showing with painful sores on the gums, lips, and mouth. In most people, primary herpes is related to swollen lymph nodes, fever, and bleeding gums, together with painful ulcers surrounding the mouth (gingivostomatitis) and sore throat. These symptoms and signs might last for many days. Problems while drinking and eating might cause dehydration.

The sore completely heals in 2-6 weeks, normally without scarring. The virus might be cured of saliva for days after the lesion completely heals. Primary herpes normally appears during childhood. Not everyone has a serious primary attack when they first get an infection with herpes. In many people, the virus infects your body without incurring any symptoms. The method generates an antibody response, leading the immune system to form antibodies against the virus of herpes. The antibody response aids in lowering recurrences and makes them mild. Antibodies also make it tough for the virus to get a foothold somewhere else in your body. Therefore, it is to transfer the herpes virus possibly to other body parts (autoinoculation).

After infection, the virus gets in the nerve cells and moves up the nerve until it occurs to a place known as a ganglion. There, it stays quietly in a phase that is meant to be latent or dormant. The accurate mechanism behind this is still not clear, but it is known that few conditions appear to enhance recurrences, consisting

  • Fever
  • Cold
  • UV rays