Having Sex With Herpes
Herpes is the most common sexually transmitted disease in the world. Its spread is a simple as one partner has herpes and another doesn’t. Any sexual contact between the two can lead to infection of the person without herpes. Vaginal sex, anal sex kissing, or oral sex can all lead to herpes infection if one partner is infected. This is why it is important to understand everything about having sex with herpes.
The herpes simplex virus can easily enter the human body through broken skin, abrasion caused by rough sex, a sore caused by other medical conditions or a cut in the mouth. It is also possible for herpes simplex virus to slip past the body’s defense mechanism especially through mucous membrane in the eyes, rectum or genitals.
Herpes has no known cure yet. Though the spread has decreased over the years, it is still possible for an infected person to spread the virus.
Sex Is Not the Only Way To Test Positive
If you get diagnosed with herpes, it does not mean that you must have got it through sexual contact. Contact with an infected person can lead to infection. At least one out of six Americans has genital herpes with many having the other eight types of herpes simplex virus.
Can I Spread Herpes Without An Outbreak
A cluster of red blistery bumps is a sign of genital or oral herpes. When first infected, they will appear within 2 to 10 days. The sores will burst, crust then heal and come back again later. The first year will probably be full of recurrent outbreaks. The pus coming out of the sores carries millions of viruses. This means the outbreak period is the most contagious time.
Even in cases where the skin is clear and there are no sores or blisters in sight, you are still not off the hook. You might still be shedding the virus only that the virus count will be smaller. Though the count is lower, you can still spread the virus to another person. Experts say that a large percentage of infections occur during the asymptomatic periods when there are no visible symptoms.
It is important that you avoid sex before and after an outbreak. This will reduce the chances of spreading the virus to your partner.
Condoms Will Work, To A Certain Point
If you are not going through an outbreak, you should use a condom. The consistent use of condoms can significantly reduce the risk of spreading the virus by up to 30%. We all know that condoms can break and this can be risky for the uninfected person. Even in cases where the condom does not break, it might not be as effective as it is in preventing pregnancies. Any skin to skin contact involving an affected area can lead to infection.
Women Are At A Greater Risk
The fact that women have expansive mucus membranes in the vagina increases their odds of getting infected. This is especially the case when they are having sex with men. Men are known to shed the virus more than women when they are not dealing with the symptoms. The infection rate from men to women is about 10% while that of women to men stands at 4%.
Talk to a medical practitioner about the use of antiviral medication used in the suppression of the herpes virus. Also, make sure you talk about having sex with herpes because they will talk you through the safety measures. Medications such as Valtrex can be used in suppression therapy to keep the outbreaks at bay.
You do not have to have a herpes outbreak to spread the virus. If you have an uninfected partner, talk to your doctor about the best measures that will help prevent spreading the virus to them. The tips above can help you on matters involving having sex with herpes and how to be safe while at it.