Antiviral medications may help shorten the length of a herpes outbreak and cut down on recurring outbreaks.

These treatments can reduce outbreaks by up to 80%.

Oral herpes (cold sores)Everyone is at risk for oral herpes from HSV-1.

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To infect people, HSV-1 and HSV-2 must get into the body through broken skin or a mucous membrane, such as inside the mouth or in the genital area.

In addition to the fluid from fever blisters, each virus can be carried in bodily fluids like saliva, semen, and fluid in the female genital tract.

It is transmitted through kissing or sharing drinking glasses and utensils.

HSV-1 can also cause genital herpes, although HSV-2 is the main cause of genital herpes. You may be infected with HSV-1 or HSV-2 but not show any symptoms.

Estimates of how many Americans are infected range from 20 to 30%.

HSV-2 is 3 times higher among HIV-infected adults compared to the general population.Often symptoms are triggered by exposure to the sun, fever, menstruation, emotional stress, a weakened immune system, or an illness.There is no cure for herpes, and once you have it, it is likely to come back.Although there is no cure for genital herpes, an infected person can take steps to prevent spreading the disease, and can continue to have a normal sex life.While most herpes infections do not cause serious complications, infections in infants and in people with weakened immune systems, or herpes infections that affect the eyes, can be life threatening. Kissing, using the same eating utensils, sharing personal items (such as a razor), and receiving oral sex from someone who has HSV-1 can cause you to contract the virus. Until recently, scientists assumed that HSV-1 infections were not sexually transmitted.However, some people may have one outbreak and then never have another one.