Genital Herpes Treatments – Medicines or Natural Remedies?
Genital Herpes Treatments
Genital herpes is also known as herpes type 2 and herpes genitalis. Herpes is a viral infection. There are two types of infection caused by the herpes simplex viruses. One is genital herpes or herpes genitalis caused by the herpes simplex 2 virus and the other is oral herpes or cold sores, also known as herpes type 1, which is caused by herpes simplex 1 virus.
What is Genital Herpes?
As the nomenclature implies, genital herpes affects the pubic area and oral herpes affects the mouth. Oral herpes can spread to the neck, back of the neck, shoulders, upper back and chest. In rare cases, oral herpes can spread to upper arms.
Genital herpes can spread around the penis or vagina and across the pubic area to the buttocks and rectum. In rare cases, genital herpes can spread upward to the lower abdomen and downward to thighs. Anyone can contract the herpes simplex viruses, type 1 or type 2 or both. This is regardless of age, genetics and other factors.
Herpes simplex virus is sexually transmitted, either through intercourse or oral sex or both. Physical intimacy and nonsexual contact can also spread the virus but not as quickly or severely. Using protection during sex can prevent the transmission of genital herpes to an extent but it is not completely failsafe.
Genital herpes has no known cure with antibiotics and/or medicines. Some people may be immune to the virus but there is no vaccine available at the moment. The virus that causes genital herpes is from the family herpesviridae. There are many herpes viruses of which only two infect humans.
Genital herpes is basically an infection. If left untreated and unmanaged, the infection can become chronic. The infection may worsen over time and there may be periods of remission. The virus may undergo incubation again, thereby causing another outbreak. The initial outbreak may also be delayed. It is not necessary that someone contracting the virus will immediately have the infection.
The herpes simplex virus may live on the body, in the genital area, for some time before it incubates and causes the infection. Without treatment, the virus may continue to live on the human body, mostly in the skin, for a lifetime. Some people develop a certain degree of immunity over time and don’t have a recurrence of the infection. Many people have multiple outbreaks of the virus and subsequently genital herpes infection over the years.
Signs of Genital Herpes
There may or may not be any symptoms immediately after contracting the virus. Most people will have an outbreak and hence an infection in a few days or weeks after contracting the virus. Some people may not have an outbreak of symptoms for a few months. Dormant viruses usually take up to a week to undergo incubation and then the signs would be quite obvious.
Genital herpes has many symptoms. The most visible and realizable sign is blisters. An infected person, man or woman, will have small blisters in the genital area. The small blisters may spread across the pubic area. The first outbreak is almost always the most severe as the virus is at its peak potency. The blisters will be painful. The affected area around the penis or vagina will turn reddish and there would be open sores in a few days. The blisters can spread viciously and may even develop in the rectum. Many people have ulcers and blisters on their thighs and buttocks.
Women would spot blisters and ulcers on and around the cervix or lower womb. Women will also experience some degree of vaginal discharge. Both men and women will experience pain due to the blisters. Urinating can be painful, although the degree of pain will vary from person to person depending on the severity of the outbreak.
There are many signs of genital herpes that are not as obvious as blisters, open sores or ulcers. Most people feel pain in various parts of the body, there would be substantial lethargy or perpetual fatigue, a general sense of unease and feeling unwell is also common, most people will not feel like working or doing any chores and there can be a significant impact on mood, anxiety, stress and aggression or behavior in general. The first outbreak may cause an infection that will last several days.
Many people have to wait weeks for the symptoms to subside. Usually, the symptoms will show signs of waning in five days to ten days. All symptoms will only subside in a fortnight up to a month. Some people will take a few months to be completely relieved of the symptoms. However, the outbreak may happen again, leading to a recurring infection.
As the blisters heal, the ulcers subside and the open sores become less painful, the reddishness goes away but there could be scars and marks left behind. Many people scratch the blisters and rub the genital area to get some relief when there is intolerable itching or discomfort and pain. Such actions will increase the possibility of developing scars and marks, even dark spots.
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Which Traditional Medicines are used for Genital Herpes?
There is no vaccine for the herpes simplex virus, neither type 1 nor type 2. Hence, there is no way to prevent the spread or transmission of the virus. Traditional medicine uses antiviral drugs to help people manage genital herpes. Traditional medicine does not claim to have a cure for genital herpes.
If your doctor is offering you a surefire treatment by prescribing antiviral and antibacterial drugs, then you should note that they would only help you to manage some of the symptoms of genital herpes. Some drugs can reduce the extent of the outbreak and severity of the symptoms. Some people may get relief from the pain and suffering from a while. A few drugs may be able to limit the duration of the symptoms and may reduce the severity of flare-ups.
Doctors prescribe three traditional medicines for genital herpes. They are all targeted at the symptoms and none claim to be a treatment and they are actually not a cure for genital herpes. You may be prescribed acyclovir or Zovirax, valacyclovir or Valtrex and famciclovir or Famvir. You can choose generic or branded drugs. Both will have the same effect. All these drugs are available as pills. Only acyclovir is also available as an intravenous drug. An intravenous dose is not recommended for any and sundry. Only severe cases warrant intravenous treatment.
Since traditional medicine has no cure for genital herpes and these drugs only try to manage the symptoms, there are various stages of the treatment depending on the severity of the symptoms and also the phase of infection. Initial treatment is generally applicable for the first seven or ten days.
Doctors usually recommend a brief course of the drug prescribed. The initial antiviral therapy may offer you some relief but in most cases people do not feel any notable difference. The symptoms are the most severe at the outset so most antiviral drugs don’t have much effect. Antibacterial drugs are a nonstarter because genital herpes is a viral infection. Other antimicrobial drugs, creams or ointments will also fail to offer any relief.
The initial treatment typically tries to restrict the severity and outbreak of the infection. This treatment may be prolonged if there is no sign of the symptoms subsiding in the first ten days. If there is some noticeable change, then the intermittent or suppressive treatment is recommended. Intermittent treatment is usually the second phase wherein antiviral drugs are recommended only when people experience flare-ups. If the sores recur or new blisters develop, then one is recommended to have the pills for a few days, usually for a maximum period of one week. Suppressive treatment is for frequent outbreaks. Doctors recommend at least one antiviral pill daily. The suppressive treatment may go on for months or years if someone is vulnerable to multiple outbreaks in a year.
Which Natural Remedies are used for Genital Herpes?
Traditional treatments such as antiviral drugs offer some temporary relief and yet that is not assured. Many people do not experience any relief. Natural treatments or remedies can offer relief and can actually cure oral and/or genital herpes. Antiviral drugs or pills also have side effects, though they are mild. Natural remedies don’t have any side effects whatsoever.
Antiviral drugs are also costlier than natural remedies, especially when you factor in suppressive therapy wherein you may have to take a pill every day for months and possibly years. Suppressive or long term therapy involving any of the antiviral drugs also requires multiple visits to the doctor every year, which is a costly proposition.
Natural remedies or treatments used by many people suffering from genital herpes around the world include baking soda, cornstarch, Epsom salt and Echinacea extract among others. Baking soda or cornstarch can be applied to sores to get relief from the pain and itchiness. The sores will dry up faster and they will subside sooner. Bathing in a solution of Epsom salt or just spending some time in the bathtub filled with water and some generous amount of the salt will offer relief from pain. It would also heal the blisters, sores and ulcers faster. Echinacea extract can be consumed with tea or juice or a healthy drink. Natural remedies for herpes include dietary changes and a safe hygienic lifestyle. Explore such natural genital herpes treatments in Herpes Cure Secrets
Note: This Page was last updated on Monday 18th of February 2019