Herpes evolves from infection with the herpes simplex virus (HSV). It causes blisters or sores to grow in or around the mouth or genitals, together with other symptoms. Hence, genital herpes is a widespread sexually transmitted infection that can cause sores to form on the genitals.
Although, some individuals have genital herpes without knowing as there are no symptoms. However, leaving this untreated can cause severe diseases like brain infection and disseminated infection and affect some internal organs, among others.
Now the big question is, is the herpes infection curable? This article comprehensively covers the things you need to know about treating genital herpes.
What Is Genital Herpes?
Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) that causes herpetic sores, which are painful blisters (fluid-filled boils) that can break open and leach fluid. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 572,000 new infections are evolving yearly.
Causes of Genital Herpes
There are two forms of the herpes simplex virus (HSV) that cause genital herpes:
- HSV-1: This kind often triggers cold sores, but it can cause genital herpes as well.
- HSV-2: This form regularly causes genital herpes, but it can also result in cold sores.
In 2016, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared that nearly 3.7 billion Trusted Source individuals under age 50 had contracted HSV-1. In the same year, about 491 million people from ages 15-49 years contracted an HSV-2 infection.
Genital Herpes Treatment Options
There are several treatment options for genital herpes. These herpes treatment options are grouped into genital herpes medication and natural genital herpes treatment.
Herpes Medication for Genital Herpes
Basically, there are no medicines for herpes cure. However, a doctor may prescribe an antiviral drug to prevent the infection from spreading. Meanwhile, herpes treatments such as genital herpes cream over the counter can also help manage itching, tingling, and pain.
Mainly, Antiviral drugs may assist in accelerating the sores healing process and limit pain. Also, medications to help lessen the symptoms may be used at the initial signs of an outbreak (itching, tingling, and other signs). And if outbreaks have occurred, a physician may also recommend drugs to limit those future outbreaks occurrences.
Keep in mind that drug treatment is not a herpes cure, but it can make living with the ailment easier. So, antiviral medications do not completely cure the virus. It remains in your body, so if you stop administering the medicines that curb it, you may have more severe or frequent symptom outbreaks and the possibility of you spreading the infection to others increases.
Three antiviral medications, all taken by mouth, used for genital herpes are:
- Acyclovir (Zovirax)
- Valacyclovir (Valtrex)
- Famciclovir (Famvir)
Natural Treatments for Genital Herpes
As discussed above, there are various pharmaceuticals available for genital herpes treatment. But some come with side effects, plus not everybody wants to take a drug forever. Below are the natural remedies you likely have at home for genital herpes treatment.
Although there is no permanent cure, there are natural genital herpes treatments to help with the symptoms and soothe the pain.
1. Baking Soda
During your genital herpes outbreak blistering stage, you can use baking soda. This helps to keep the genital region dry, making it less accommodating to bacteria, particularly in genital herpes women. Hence, baking soda may assist in smoothly accelerating the drying of your herpes sores.
To try this technique, add a little water to pure baking soda and mix it until it becomes a thick paste. Apply the paste to your blisters with a cotton ball or cotton swab. Be cautious of using a new swab every time, so you don’t pollute the baking soda fusion.
Using garlic for genital herpes is one of the natural ways of treating herpes on virginal. Scientists have long identified garlic’s antimicrobial elements. In fact, a garlic component referred to as Allicin even exhibits antiviral action against herpes, both when consumed and topically applied.
To use this natural therapy, crush up a clove of fresh garlic and blend it into olive oil. Use this fusion on your genital region three times daily. Consider wearing something like a panty liner or menstrual pad to protect your clothing from the concoction.
Cornstarch functions in much the same method as baking soda. It aims to dry the genital and the area fluid-filled herpes sores, ultimately suppressing virginal herpes. You can make cornstarch paste the exact way, like a baking soda paste. For both, ensure to get rid of any remaining paste after you use it.
Checklists of Natural Genital Herpes Treatments
Good personal hygiene is crucial when it comes to treating any infections naturally. The following alongside could help reduce some pain from herpes symptoms:
- applying aloe vera gel to blisters
- soaking in a warm Sitz bath or bathing in lightly salted water
- applying petroleum jelly to the affected regions
- squirting water from a bidet or bottle onto sores to reduce pain while urinating
- abstaining from sexual intercourse, even with protection, till symptoms cease
- wearing loose clothes to avoid irritation.
The following tactics can help limit the risk of contracting or transmitting herpes:
- Avoiding sex where symptoms persist
- Using obstruction techniques, like condoms, whenever you have sex
- Abstaining from sex with anyone who is showing symptoms of herpes. Still, it’s essential to know that HSV can be transmitted to another person even when symptoms are unavailable
- Staying away from kissing and oral sex when there is a cold blister around the mouth
- Washing the hands thoroughly, particularly after touching the infected region
- Discussing with sex partners about their STI status.
Although genital herpes cure is not visible, starting treatment within 24 hours of first symptoms, say, as soon as the tingling start, can considerably reduce an outbreak length. For instance, if somebody uses an antiviral drug or any natural remedy, symptoms may subdue in 1 to 2 days more rapidly compared to when no treatment is used.
And if an outbreak has occurred, regular treatment for extended periods can significantly reduce an outbreak length or minimize the risk of spreading herpes to a partner, though it is still a possibility.
In summary, whether you prefer natural relief that is around you or you’d like to try medication or drug therapy, both considerably help reduce the severity of genital herpes symptoms.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Over The Counter Herpes Cream Can I Apply?
Topical acyclovir can be used to treat herpes simplex virus infections of the genitals (sex organs) symptoms. Although topical acyclovir will not heal herpes, it may help suppress the soreness and discomfort and may help the blisters (if any) heal more rapidly.
Does Herpes Affect Body Organs?
Aside from the genital area and mouth, herpes can also spread to internal organs, the lungs, and the liver.
Can Herpes Cause Infertility In Women?
Herpes cannot affect genetic fertility levels. Nevertheless, in the situation of an outbreak, it is advised that people with herpes should refrain from sexual activity. Hence, you may have to delay conception efforts if you have herpes, but as soon as the outbreak ends, you can engage in sexual intercourse.