What is Genital Herpes?
Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted infection (STI), but unlike Chlamydia or Gonorrhoea, it can’t be treated with antibiotics. This is because herpes is a viral infection, caused by the HSV virus. The HSV1 virus is what everyone knows as cold sores, passed through kissing and sharing objects like toothbrushes or razors.
Although, it’s actually the HSV2 virus that causes genital herpes, which can show itself as painful sores on the surface of the skin, that blister and then heal again. However, a lot of people experience no symptoms at all and live a perfectly normal life without even realising they have the infection.
The condition is passed from person to person through unprotected sexual intercourse (including oral sex) and so it’s advised to always use condoms to avoid contracting the infection.
What Causes Genital Herpes?
Genital herpes is caused by the HSV2 virus and is passed on through sexual intercourse or other skin-to-skin contact. The infection can remain inactive for large amounts of time, however it’s still highly infectious and so even people without visible sores and blisters could still have (and pass on) genital herpes. Because it’s the same virus, you can also catch genital herpes by receiving oral sex from someone with a cold sore (oral herpes).
If you have contracted the condition, you will notice that it’s generally cyclic, and sufferers...
Herpes treatment options
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