All of us have special people in our lives. We have our family, friends, husband or boyfriend. We spend most of our time with them so it is possible that we grow attached to them. Sometimes, we can’t say the words nor show that we cared for them directly. We are just using gestures to make them feel that we love and care for them. It is normal for us to get affectionate to the people around us. We pinch our brother’s or sister’s cheek if we find them cute. We also kiss our parents cheek before bidding goodbye to them. We hug our friends before leaving and we kiss our boyfriend to let them feel that we love them.
Kissing, hugging and touching are just few of the gestures we always do to our loved ones. It is our way to show that we love and appreciate them. For our friends, we do the “cheek-to-cheek” as our greetings. For our family, we kiss their cheeks and hug them to let them feel that they are loved. For our boyfriend, we kiss, hug and touch them, as a sign of our affection to them. And for married couples, they do have a different level of intimacy that sometimes they can’t do with their family or friends. We do have different ways of gestures that we show to the people around us. These gestures are our way to express our feelings to our loved ones that we can’t even say to them directly. But how do we know if our affectionate gestures can bring illness or diseases to our loved ones? One of those diseases is Herpes. What is herpes? how can you get herpes? And can you get herpes from kissing? We will give you these answers in detail here. Read on.
Can You Get Herpes From Kissing?
Herpes is actually a disease that is caused by herpes simplex virus and it is sexually transmitted. This virus affects the cervix, genitals and skin in other parts of the body. It is a chronic condition, meaning that it is long term. Herpes can also affect the mouth, the upper thighs and buttocks. It is hard to notice and most people don’t realize that they are already suffering from herpes.
There are 80 or more types of herpes viruses. Herpes comes from a Greek word which means “to creep”. This meaning refers to the exceptional characteristic array of all herpes viruses to “creep along” local nerve passageways to nerve groups at the end where they stay quiet or asleep for a long period of time.
Herpes can be classified into 2 types:
- Herpes Type 1 or HSVp1 and
- Herpes Type 2 or HSVp2
People, who often get HSVp1, are infants or children. They sometimes acquire this disease from an infected adult through kissing or sharing a towel. HSVp2 are often acquired by:
- Person with multiple sex partners
- Weak immune system due to another disease or medicine
- Having sex at a very young age
- Has another sexually transmitted disease
How Can You Get Herpes?
You can acquire herpes if you are encountered with a person, who is already been infected with HSVp1 or HSVp2. This usually happens during sex. HSVp1 easily spreads to the genitals if a person has cold sore or does oral sex. Most likely, that will cause blisters or sores to the genitals. Herpes can also be acquired through:
- Vaginal, oral and anal sex
- Touching any part infested with herpes
Can You Get Herpes From Saliva?
This is a common question from people who are curious. But as we go on, we will know the answer of that question.
A person having an HSVp1 can spread the virus by:
- Touching the person’s skin such as pinching the child’s cheek
- Lip locking
- Sharing of utensils and things such as razor, silverware, lip balm or towels.
Oral herpes can be transferred through straight contact between the broken skin (break or a cut), any contagious area and mucous areas such as genitals and mouth. While herpes is being transferred, there is also a possibility that it will show no symptoms. There will come a time that for several days all through the year, the virus will reactivate yet, there will be no symptoms to occur.
When you are executing oral sex on a person who has genital herpes, there will be a possibility that you will get oral herpes. But, that is an unusual situation because in most situations, genital herpes is caused by HSVp2. HSVp2 seldom affects the face or mouth.
Herpes virus never leaves the body once you get infected by it. The virus travels from the skin cells to the nerve cells after the first occurrence. Then, the herpes virus will halt in the nerve chambers endlessly. However, we do not know when it will become active again. Below are the things which can wake up the herpes virus in the nerve cells. These are:
- Sun exposure
- Menstrual Periods
The symptoms of oral herpes can be similar to general herpes. Typical lesions have a tendency to form as tiny fluid-filled sores which can look as if it is a solo blister or in a group. Blisters may also appear at the back of the throat, inside the mouth and inflammation of the lymph nodes that can be located at the neck.
Similar symptoms may happen if you have general herpes but the difference is that signs of oral herpes is mild and sometimes, hard to notice. Subtle symptoms such as cut or small crack in the skin, bug bite, pimples or chapped lips.
Other indicators of herpes may include:
- Bumps, pimples or blisters on the infected part
- Pain while peeing
Herpes may also look like:
- Jock itch
- Bug bites
- Razor burn
- Zipper burn
- Yeast infection or
- Irritation from sex
A dermatologist can often identify herpes simplex by watching at the blisters, during an outbreak. To check that a person has herpes simplex, a dermatologist may get gauze from a blister and send it to the laboratory. Other medical tests are used such as blood tests when blisters are absent to check if you have herpes simplex virus.
Is There A Cure For Herpes?
The answer is no, there is no cure. Once you get infected with herpes simplex virus, it will be forever. The herpes simplex virus just stay inside our nerve and time only knows when it will become active. The good thing is that, blisters sometimes disappear without taking any medicine or undergoing a treatment. However, most of the people still prefer to cure herpes simplex virus because it can dismiss the signs and lessen the occurrence.
Many people are treated using an antiviral medicine. Using an antiviral ointment or cream, you can get rid of the tingling, itching or burning sensation. To shorten the outbreak of herpes, a person infected with herpes can take an antiviral dose such as oral pills or a shot. Usually, herpes is not harmful but you can easily get an HIV if you are exposed.
Genital herpes can cause throbbing genital blisters and can be stark to those people who have weak immune systems. You can transmit the infection to different areas of your body like your eyes if you try to touch your genital sores or fluids from the blisters. Clean your hands meticulously to avoid the dispersion of your herpes to the other parts of your body, if you happen to touch the blisters or fluids.
If you happen to be suffering from herpes, you need to tell about your condition. Be honest and tell your partner the risks involved of having herpes. Having blisters or other signs of herpes can increase the risks of you scattering the disease. However, you can still taint your partner even though your body did not show any signs of herpes.
Breaks or blisters in the skin or the lining of the vagina, rectum and mouth are caused by genital herpes. Herpes causes genital sores which can bleed effortlessly. During sex when the blisters made a connection with the vagina, mouth or rectum, they increase the danger of getting or giving HIV if your partner has HIV or the other way around.
Primary rashes of herpes simplex virus are sometimes the worst. However, there are other people who just suffer mild outbreaks. Some herpes are too mild that a person suffering from it even failed to notice. There are even times that people mistake primary rashes for 1st occurrence if the signs of herpes are mild and another herpes outbreak happens years after.
Some infected people have only one occurrence. Recurrence happens if the infected person happens to have another herpes plague. These happenings tend to be very common all through the 1st year of infestation. The occurrences tend to become less common and slighter as time passes by. It is because that the body produces antibodies to fight off the virus.
During Herpes Occurrence:
- Within 72 hours of herpes outbreak, seek help from your health care provider or physician.
- Wear loose fitting clothes and cotton underwear
- Make sure that part where the blisters are dry and clean
- Shorten your sun exposure
- When you sleep at night, do not under underwear
- Avoid touching your eyes or mouth after touching the blisters and thoroughly, wash your hands when you happen to touch any part of your body which has blisters.
- Before you use the towels again, make sure to wash it first.
How Can We Prevent From Having Blisters?
- Latex condom should be used. Even though, condoms cannot guarantee 100% protection, but at least, it lessens the risk of acquiring sexually transmitted diseases.
- Water based lubricant must be used. Lubricants can aid in avoiding friction while doing sex. Water based lubricants such as Aqualube, glycerin, astroglide and KY jelly should only be used. Cooking oil, body lotions and petroleum jellies are oil based lubricants which can make the latex weak.
- Spermicides should not be used for protection against herpes. Most of the condoms are lubricated with sperm killing elements which are called spermicides. Jellies and stand-alone foams are just examples of spermicides.
- Dental dam should be used for oral sex.
- Get yourself tested.
- Being in a serious and long-term connection with a person who already got tested and has negative result.
- Avoid doing sex with your partner if he has blisters on the genitals. As well as avoid receiving from anyone who has blisters visible on his or her mouth.
- Drink a lot of water.
- Proper hygiene is important. Scrub your fingernails daily and make sure that your body is clean.
- Application of ice packs may alleviate the pain and lessen the recurrence.
- Lukewarm baths is helpful to lessen the pain.
- You must use sun blocks to avoid the recurrence.
- To ease fever and inflammation, use over-the-counter medicines.
Herpes and Immune System
People with weak immune system can easily acquire herpes. However, this may lead to life-threatening conditions such as:
- Swelling of the esophagus
- Encephalitis or infection of the brain
- Dispersed herpes
- Damage of the adrenal glands
- Liver impairment which includes hepatitis
- Urinary withholding in women