Genital Herpes in Women
Herpes is transmitted through the HSV-1 and HSV-2 virus. HSV-1 typically causes cold sores on the mouth, the lips and other parts of the face and body. On the other hand, HSV-2 causes genital herpes in men and women. Genital Herpes is a sexually transmitted disease, whereas cold sores can be transmitted through physical contact, such as kissing as well as sharing of towels, toothbrushes and utensils with an infected person. Even wearing a condom may not protect women from getting herpes from an infected partner. The virus can be present in the uncovered part of the skin and can transfer to the women’s skin. Genital herpes can also be contracted by mouth and genital contact with a person having cold sores or infection in the genitals. Transmission of the infection, from an infected male to a female, is more common than from an infected woman to a male.
The symptoms of infection are seen in the form of raw or reddish areas in the genitals or in other parts of the body, the mouth and the face. The women feel a tingling or itching sensation during the initial stages of the primary outbreak. Within a few days, there are small blisters or sores that might be painful. They can be present in the vagina, on the buttocks or on the thighs and in the anal region. In many cases, such blisters might also be present in the urethra of the woman. The woman experiences a lot of pain while passing urine, as it passes over the sores. Women also experience additional symptoms of backaches, headaches, fatigue and other flu like symptoms.
There is no cure for herpes, as the virus remains in the body of the woman for a lifetime, once it enters the skin. However, there are antiviral medicines that can reduce the intensity of the pain and also the frequency of the outbreaks. Women who are pregnant can take oral medications, so that they can protect the baby from getting the infection.
Recurring outbreaks of herpes in women can vary according to the immune system of the person. There are also certain factors that trigger an outbreak, such as:
- sunlight or ultraviolet rays;
- physical strain or emotional trauma;
- presence of immune deficiency infections;
- hormonal imbalances;
- menstruation and so on.
The symptoms of herpes can range from mild to serious. In some cases, there might be no symptoms present at all. It is also possible for women to get infected by a male who shows no symptoms and has no outbreaks.