There are many myths about who can get herpes and how the infection is transferred. Considering how easy it is to contract the disease, you may have it and not even know.
Herpes simplex is a viral infection. Simply speaking, anyone who has ever had a cold sore or has suffered through a fever blister has been affected by the herpes simplex virus. There are two primary types of herpes simplex virus – HSV-1 and HSV-2.
HSV-1 causes cold sores which are also known as mouth herpes, oral herpes, and herpes simplex labialis. On the other hand, the HSV-2 virus, which is closely-related to HSV-1, is responsible for causing almost all cases of genital herpes. However, it is important to note that both HSV-1 and HSV-2 can causes herpes sores on genitals as well as the face. Furthermore, a herpes simplex virus is contagious, irrespective of whether or not you can see the sores.
According to a recent reports released by the World Health Organization (WHO), more than two-thirds of the population on earth are infected with the herpes simplex virus (HSV-1)! The estimates state that more than 3.7 billion people across the globe under the age of 50 years have HSV-1. But most people are worried about the second type of HSV that causes genital sores. The primary reason for this is the high stigma that has been attached to this disease that is most often categorized as a sexually transmitted one. The latest WHO reports have no good news to offer on that count either. According the report, more than 417 million people between the ages of 15 and 49 years across the globe already have the HSV-2 infection. Added to this, more than 140 million adults across the globe have genital sores and contagious infections due to HSV-1. In total, that brings us to more than 0.5 billion people who are capable of sexually transmitting either the HSV-1 or HSV-2 that causes genital sores.
This information is likely to scare you. However, the truth is that herpes has been stigmatized too much over the years. It is a common viral infection that can pass from person to person very easily. If you don’t have one or the other type of herpes already, chances are high that you will be exposed to the virus in your lifetime. The best way to ease your worries and allay your fears is to arm yourself with the right kind of information. There are many ideas that we have always believed about herpes that are completely untrue or have very little truth to it. Here are a few things you need to know.
Discover top tips for a healthy body and mind with our weekly wellbeing newsletter.
Join our mailing list today.