Genital Herpes, caused by Herpes Simplex Virus Type II (HSV II), usually affects the surface of genital area. Symptoms include itchiness, pain, and small blisters ranging from pinhead size to green bean size that soon ruptures in 3 to 4 days, leaving erosions with translucent fluid. The lesions often heal within 10 days if there is no other infection. Some patients may also suffer from generalized symptoms such as fever, malaise, muscle ache, joint pain and appearance of lymph glands in the groin. These symptoms may subside after 2-3 weeks’ time. Although the skin surface would appear to be healed, yet the disease can remain latent in the nerve ganglion and around 50-80% of patients are liable to relapse, though the condition will be minor comparing to the first.
The incubation period ranging from five to six days.
Adopt safer sex is the most effective way to reduce the risk of infection:
- Maintain monogamous relationship with an uninfected partner.
- Use codoms properly. Though condoms are unable to ensure absolute protection if the infection appears in other parts of the body (e.g.: scrotum).
How do I find out if I am infected with Genital Herpes?
You need to be examined by a physician. Tests may include cotton swab taken from any visible sores
During the herpes episode, there are several things you can do to remedy the symtoms:
- Take painkillers with medical advice from doctors
- Maintain the affected area clean and dry. Do not use ointments or creams.
- Wear loose-fitting clothing and cotton underwear.
- Eat well, exercising and lots of rest can help fighting off recurrence.
As the disease can be passed on from blisters and sores to your sex partner by direct contact, it is advisable to avoid sexual contact during herpes episode, including kissing when you have sores around the mouth. Condoms can reduce the risk of transmission of herpes, but parts of the body not covered may not be protected (e.g. the scrotum). Be careful not to spread the disease to other parts of your body. Always wash your hands with soap before and after caring for the sores. If you have any suspicions, you should seek medical advice.