What Is It

STD Facts: What is Herpes?

"Herpes" refers to one of two types of viruses. The first type, herpes simplex-1, causes what is commonly referred to as a cold sore in or around the mouth. There is over-the-counter medication that is available to keep cold sores under control.

Herpes simplex-2 is the genital herpes type. It is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) that is passed through sexual contact. Anyone who tests positive for this infection can spread it to others.

This virus is very common in the United States and across the world. Research shows that up to 20% of all sexually active people in America have it. That’s one out of every six. Many of them don’t even know they have it.

When a person comes in contact with another person that has it, they can catch it too. Even when the infected person does not have any symptoms they can pass it along. Using a condom does not always protect people from catching it. Not having sex (called abstinence) is the only way to completely avoid the risk of contracting it.

So how do you know if you have it? The only way to know is by taking a test. Order one now.


STD Facts: Symptoms of Genital Herpes

Any of the following symptoms can occur in either a man or a woman:

- Obvious sores around the genital area that do not cause any pain, itching, or tingling
- Sores accompanied by itching or tingling around the genital area or anal region
- Blisters around the genitals, buttocks, thighs, or rectal area that can break open and be very painful
- Blisters inside the tube that your urine passes through (this is called the urethra)
- Pain during urination when urine passes over the sores (this mostly happens in women).

When this happens, doctors call it an “outbreak”. These outbreaks can occur over and over again as long as a person lives. Other symptoms like headaches and backaches may also occur. If you are suffering from any of these symptoms, a genital herpes test is the only way to tell if they are caused by it or something else.

Once a person is infected, symptoms could show up within a few days or weeks, however it is possible to take years before a person knows they have it. That's why it is important to get tested by a lab regularly and treated by a doctor immediately.

Get checked

STD Facts: The Genital Herpes Test and Treatment

Although it cannot be cured, there are several treatment options that are available that keep symptoms to a minimum. Anti-viral medicines prescribed by a doctor are generally recommended. However, before treatment can begin a person must be tested. It's easy to get that done.

STEP 1) Simply order a genital herpes test online.
STEP 2) Stop by a local lab and give a quick blood sample.
STEP 3) Get your confidential results emailed to you within 24-48 hours.


If you are sexually active, you can do this to reduce your risk of exposure:

- Remain in a long-term relationship with one partner that has had negative testing;
- Always use latex condoms with any sexual activity. This may not prevent you from catching a disease but it will reduce your risk.

Not having sex at all is the only surefire way to avoid the risk of getting genital herpes.

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