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Herpes is a viral infection caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV). It is highly contagious and can spread through sexual contact, sharing objects such as toothbrushes, lipstick, lip gloss, etc. The most common symptoms are painful blisters or ulcers at the site of infection.
Types of herpes virus that cause infection
Herpes is categorised into two types: Herpes simplex virus (HSV)-1 and Herpes simplex virus (HSV)-2. It is important to note that HSV-1 and HSV-2 infections are lifelong. According to World Health Organiszation (WHO), around 3.7 billion people under age 50 have HSV-1 infection worldwide, while 417 million people aged 15-49 globally have HSV-2 infection.
HSV-1 is quite common and affects the mouth area. Its symptoms include ‘cold sores’, however, it can also cause genital herpes. HSV-1 can also be transmitted to the genital area through oral-genital contact. In a rare case, an infant can be affected with HSV-1 during delivery if the mother is affected by the particular type of virus.
HSV-2 is a type of sexually transmitted infection, which occurs when someone comes in contact with a HSV-2 infected while indulging in sexual activity. Notably, people infected with HSV-2 have a high chance of acquiring and transmitting HIV infection. HSV-2 causes infection in the genital or anal area.
- Sores on the lips.
- Pain while chewing and swallowing.
- Itching or burning sensation around mouth.
Herpes simplex Virus Type 2 symptoms
Besides having itching in the genital or anal area, one has pain while urinating and experiences discharge from the penis or vagina. Notably, not only sexual intercourse but even oral sex can lead to the spreading of HSV-2 virus.
Herpes cannot be cured, but can be treated by trying the below-mentioned natural remedies:
Vitamin E: HSV-1 affected people can apply Vitamin E on cold sores. It helps in relieving pain.
Vitamin C: It helps in boosting the white cells. Herpes patients should include peppers, kiwis, broccoli, spinach, berries and tomatoes in their daily diet.
Lavender oil: It has no effect on the virus, but is helpful in reducing pain associated with cold sores.
Peppermint oil: Few drops of peppermint oil mixed with almond oil can be applied to the sores.
Zinc: It is useful in treating herpes simplex virus type 2. If one is having genital herpes, one can apply zinc sulphate on the affected area. It helps heal the sores and prevents frequent remission of herpes genitalis.
Lemon balm: Lemon balm oil prevents the herpes virus from penetrating the cells.
Clove oil: With its antimicrobial and antiviral properties it can lessen pain occurring from a cold sore.
Bee glue or propolis: Rich in flavonoids, it is believed to bring in relief to Herpes-infected persons.
Licorice: Licorice contains Glycyrrhizin, which is an anti-oxidant. It is said that it can inactivate the herpes virus. Licorice powder mixed with water and petroleum jelly can be applied to the affected area.
Baking soda, oatmeal: Add two cups of ground oatmeal and half a cup of baking soda to your bathwater. It helps in reducing the itching.
Important note: Avoid oral or sexual activities with the infected. Always use a condom to reduce the risk of getting infected with genital herpes.
Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purposes only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or a professional healthcare provider if you have any specific questions about any medical matter.