How Do You Know If You Have Herpes

When the herpes virus sets in the first time, it is not easy to identify it. Most people who are affected by HSV-1 or HSV-2 are not even aware that they have the virus. The outbreak of sores is after several days of catching the virus.

Almost every person is susceptible of being affected by the Herpes Simplex Virus unless that person has never been kissed and has not had sex.

Oral herpes is mostly caused by HSV-1 and it appears in the form of cold sores on your mouth and lips. A casual peck on your lips from a person with cold sores can transfer the virus on to you. Herpes virus is a common condition and one out of five people may suffer from it (know how many people have herpes). Genital herpes is caused by HSV-2 and is not quite so common. People who have genital herpes may not know that they have been infected.

What Are the Signs of the Herpes Virus?

It is hard to tell at first look. The symptoms of genital herpes may be a cluster of tiny blisters that are filled with fluid; they break and form into sores that are painful. They will heal after a fortnight or so. Areas that get affected with genital herpes are your vagina, vulva, penis, butts and thighs.

The confusing thing about herpes virus is that people do not always get these sores. Few people have no visible signs or symptoms to go by while others may notice symptoms that can be easily passed off as pimples or razor burn and bug bites. They could even be misinterpreted as jock itch and haemorrhoids. Once the infection sets in, the symptoms fade after few days and they can flare up occasionally. The initial outbreak is perhaps the worst. Some people have only one or maybe a couple of outbreaks during the entire lifetime.

Definite Signs that Show that you Have Herpes

  • When you notice redness on your genitals and around your mouth after sexual contact. The red patches may also start to itch.
  • When you find blisters on and around your genitals. They break open and turn into ulcers and sores. Women may find blisters appearing on their vagina, labia, anus, buttocks, cervix and thighs. These ulcers will heal in a fortnight’s time.
  • When you notice blisters on your lips, mouth, tongue and on your back. The blisters may give a tingling sensation in the areas before they break out.
  • When you notice that it burns when you urinate as genital herpes causes pain with urination. There have been cases when some women were not finding it easy to empty their bladders and had to be given medical attention to help urinate. The outbreak of ulcers is more likely during menstruation cycles and during periods of extreme stress.

The herpes virus is mostly passed from a person to another because of sexual contact. It could happen even when a person who has the virus does not have any signs or symptoms of infection. The virus travels through the nerve path once it enters through your skin. Once you are affected, the virus may become dormant or inactive but it always remains in nerve cells. It can become active at any time and it will travel from a nerve path to the skin surface.

Is There a Test?

Samples of herpes sores can be given to a laboratory for examination and confirmation of the virus. Blood tests could also be conducted. These blood tests look for the antibodies to the herpes virus which are created by the body’s immune system after the infection.

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