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Ask A Healer HSV-1 and HSV-2 Articles

Herpes: Not just an STD

Herpes and your heart

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Afraid you have herpes?

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Herpes triggers, pain relief tips, diagnosis and testing info. Some of this content is courtesy of Dynamiclear.

Strengthening the Immune System - Diet and life-style changes designed to support strong immune response can be beneficial in managing herpes. In fact, it's a very good idea to strengthen your immune system, to help your body combat hsv.

Good rest, exercise and a diet rich in antioxidant-yielding fresh fruit and vegetable juices will help strengthen your immune system.

With any disease or health condition an approach to improving diet and nutrition should be taken. An appropriate diet high in lysine and low in arginine, with vitamin supplements, may be beneficial for those suffering from viral diseases, in particular the herpes virus.

There is scientific research to support a theory that arginine, an amino acid, can aggravate herpes and bring on an outbreak. Foods containing arginine include nuts, chocolate and caffeine. If herpes outbreaks are a problem for you, see whether cutting back on these foods or eliminating them from your diet helps relieve your symptoms. It has been found that the amino acid, Lysine, retards virus growth, so you should include in your diet foods high in Lysine and decrease the foods high in L-Arginine (an amino acid that supports the herpes virus).

Pain relievers for herpes simplex sufferers
Herpes outbreaks, for some people, can be quite painful and discomforting. Below are some simple self-help remedies:

* Salt Baths: Used to wash the genital area salt baths can clean, soothe and dry the sores. Use 1 teaspoon of salt in 600ml of water or a handful in a shallow bath. include simple analgesics such as aspirin and paracetamol

* Ice can be soothing if applied directly to the sores

* Wear loose underclothes: By wearing loose underclothes that are preferably cotton (not nylon) during an outbreak, you can help minimize discomfort and allow healing.

* Water Relief: For anyone experiencing extreme pain when urinating, the process can be less painful when done in a cool bath and it is important to remember to drink plenty of fluids as this dilutes the urine.

* Bach Flower Remedies: May be prescribed to ease the emotional stress of herpes, particularly Rescue Remedy.

What triggers a herpes outbreak? Sunlight is known to trigger cold sore outbreaks. Stress is another big herpes outbreak trigger. Managing stress is a must for anyone who has contracted herpes.

Genital herpes is generally considered to be sexually transmitted but recurring infections can be triggered by stress or high-arginine foods.

Is genital herpes common?
Yes. An estimated 40 million people have genital herpes which makes it a chronic viral infection. About 500,000 new people get symptomatic herpes each year and there are even more people without symptoms.

It has been estimated that about 20% of the population have genital herpes and 90% have oral herpes (cold sores). The Herpes Combat Kit must be applied when the outbreak is most active (which is commonly when the blisters or sores have opened up and are weeping fluid).

How is Herpes Spread?

Common Herpes Symptoms

Herpes Diagnosis and Testing

There are several tests that are used to diagnose herpes, some are more accurate then others. Lots of people need to be tested more than once.

If active symptoms are present and the sores are not healed one should request a specific virus culture or assay for the herpes virus. A Viral culture looks for the presence of the virus in the lesion. This method is very specific and does not frequently give a positive result when something else is the culprit.

The viral culture often misses herpes even when it is present. Often a patient who has received a negative culture result will be asked to come back again when a new genital lesion appears so the culture can be tried a second or third time.

Blood tests are generally used in cases where no visible symptoms are present. A blood test works by detecting the presence of herpes antibodies. There is a possibility that the virus will not show up in a blood test, and a positive result is not always indicative that a person has genital herpes.

Firstly, after the first exposure to herpes, a person may take several weeks to develop the antibodies that the test looks for. Usually, it takes two weeks to three months after exposure to herpes for antibodies to appear in the blood. Some blood tests detect antibodies sooner than others. However, once antibodies are found they remain in the body for life.

Secondly, blood tests cannot tell the difference between the two types of herpes, HSV-1 and HSV-2. For this reason, anyone seeking an accurate diagnosis of genital herpes must be sure to get a "type-specific" serologic test, which can accurately distinguish HSV-2 from HSV-1 antibodies. Most commercially available kit assays currently cannot make this distinction despite their claims.

Please seek immediate professional help if genital herpes is suspected. Some of the available diagnostic procedures become less reliable the longer you wait.

If you are concerned that a diagnosis for herpes is incorrect you should consult your health care provider for their professional opinion, and request another test to be taken if you feel you require further confirmation.

Genital herpes should be diagnosed professionally. If the condition is confirmed to be herpes The Herpes Combat Kit should be applied to the soonest active outbreak. The Herpes Combat Kit must be applied when the outbreak is most active (which is commonly when the blisters or sores have opened up and are weeping fluid).

Identifying Your HSV Type

Not everyone knows whether they have HSV1 or HSV2 and in certain situations that information could be relevant. In a situation where both partners have HSV-2 precautions should still be made to prevent the spread of the disease to other 'uninfected' areas. If one partner has genital HSV1 and the other has HSV2, each might get infected with a second type.

Diagnosing genital HSV1 is difficult because the infection seldom recurs. Since many people have HSV1 orally, a finding of HSV1 by Western blot serology (blood test) would not positively identify genital infection. A Western blot confirms if you have HSV2. If you are seronegative (negative by blood test) for type 2, but positive for type 1, that gives you a strong clue as to the cause of your outbreaks (seropositive for type 1 but not type 2, with infrequent recurring genital herpes is probably genital HSV1). The Herpes Combat Kit is effective on both HSV1 and HSV2 infections.

Health Conditions Often Confused with Herpes - Listed below are conditions that are sometimes mistaken for herpes:

Canker sores (aphthous ulcers): Usually occur inside the mouth, are gray with a distinct edge and usually heal within 10 to 14 days without treatment

Bacterial or yeast infections: Sometimes confused with genital herpes, but do not usually produce blisteringImpetigo: A highly infectious bacterial disease, more common among children often producing crusty blisters

Syphilis: A bacterial infection, causes chancres sometimes mistaken for blisters caused by genital herpes. Unlike genital herpes, Syphilis does not usually produce a cluster of blisters, and it usually responds well to antibiotics.

Molluscum contagious (molluscum): Like herpes, molluscum is a viral infection of the skin. Unlike herpes, molluscum produces lesions that are raised, with a central dimple. Natural remedies for molluscum contagious

If you suspect that you have a health problem please consult your doctor or other health care provider immediately. Genital herpes, and other conditions, should be diagnosed professionally.

How can herpes be prevented?
These steps can help to reduce the risk of infection and transmission: Tell Your Partner. It is important to understand what herpes is and how it can be prevented. You and your partner will need to discuss which precautions are best and the social and emotional impacts of herpes.

Avoid sex during outbreaks as herpes is most contagious during this time. Many couples have had sexual relations for years without transmitting herpes. Some simply avoid having sexual contact when signs or symptoms are present, while others use condoms or other protection between outbreaks to help protect against asymptomatic shedding. The Herpes Combat Kit can be used to dry up and heal the outbreak, quickly and effectively, and to reduce any further episodes.

Limit the number of sexual partners

By having sex with a non-infected partner who has sex only with you (mutual monogamy).

Use Latex Condoms between outbreaks. Condoms offer useful protection against herpes protecting or covering the mucous membranes, the most likely sites of infection.

Pictures of Herpes Outbreaks
I've moved the pictures of herpes outbreaks to a different page, so that a concious click is needed to view them. These are graphic pictures. By clicking here, you are acknowledging that you know the pictures you are about to see are of intimate areas of the body, as they appear during a typical herpes outbreak. You are also acknowledging you are of a legal age to see such pictures.

Click here to view the images