Herpes Simplex Treatment Tips

02 July of 2008

Herpes simplex is an infection that mainly affects the mouth or genital area. It affects most people on one or more occasions during their lives. There are two types of HSV, type I and type II. In general, type I, also known as herpes labialis, causes infections above the waist, most commonly as oral “cold sores.” Type II infections occur mainly below the waist, leading to genital herpes. Oral herpes causes cold sores around the mouth or face. Genital herpes affects the genitals, buttocks or anal area. Genital herpes is a transmitted disease (STD). Herpes infections are marked by painful. HSV-1 often causes lesions inside the mouth, such as cold sores (fever blisters). It is transmitted by contact with infected saliva. By adulthood, up to 90% of people will have antibodies to HSV-1.

Herpes simplex virus 2 (HSV-2) is transmitted. Up to 30% of U.S. adults have antibodies against HSV-2. Cross-infection of type 1 and 2 viruses may occur from oral-genital contact. The virus can be dangerous in newborn babies or in people with weak immune systems. Most people have outbreaks several times a year. Medicines to help your body fight the virus can help lessen symptoms and decrease outbreaks. People with genital herpes should avoid contact when they have active lesions. Safer behaviors, including the use of condoms, may also lower the risk of infection. Topical antibiotic ointments also may be applied to prevent secondary bacterial infections. Famcyclovir has similar effects and may work to prevent a herpes infection.

Avoiding direct contact with an open lesion will lower the risk of infection. Long-term drug therapy may be helpful for individuals who suffer frequent recurrent outbreaks. Suppressive treatment will reduce outbreaks by 85 percent and reduces viral shedding by more than 90 percent. Wear loose clothing. As sun exposure often triggers facial herpes simplex, sun protection using high protection factor sunscreens and other measures is important. Suppressive drugs may interfere with the immune system’s ability to fight the virus. Keep the sore area clean and dry. Place cool or lukewarm cloths on the sore area for short periods of time. Do not use perfumed soaps, sprays, feminine deodorants, or douches. Take aspirin, acetaminophen or ibuprofen for the pain. Avoid touching sores.

Herpes Simplex Treatment and Prevention Tips:

  1. Avoid excessive heat or sunlight.

  2. Keep the sore area clean and dry.

  3. Place cool or lukewarm cloths on the sore area for short periods of time.

  4. Do not use perfumed soaps, sprays, feminine deodorants, or douches.

  5. Take aspirin, acetaminophen or ibuprofen for the pain.

  6. Avoiding direct contact with an open lesion will lower the risk of infection.

  7. Sun protection using high protection factor sunscreens and other measures is important.

  8. Undecylenic acid (Castor oil derivative) is also proven to have anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties.

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