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Herpes Simplex 1

  An Overview Of The Herpes Simplex 1 Virus

The herpes simplex virus is a common health issue in several different countries around the world. In the United States, alone, one out of five adults is infected with this virus. There are several different types of herpes infection depending on the affected area but genital herpes is probably the most common among the lot. There are also two main types of HSV – type 1 and 2. Herpes simplex 2 is commonly associated with genital herpes.

On the other hand, herpes simplex 1 causes cold sores and blisters on the upper body usually around the mouth. This virus is transmitted through the saliva of an individual infected by it. The virus can also cause genital herpes through oral-genital sexual contact with an infected person in much the same way as HSV 2 can also give rise to cold sores. 

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Herpes Infections

HSV 1 infections are more commonly known as cold sores or fever blisters. They usually occur on the face as small and clear, fluid-filled blisters. The virus can also cause lesions or wounds on the skin surface.  

Primary Infections

Infections can either be primary or recurrent. It is quite easy to get infected through exposure but curiously, only ten percent of patients infected with HSV1 get to develop sores. On the primary infection – that is, the first time that a patient suffers from the disorder – the signs of the infection can come out between two to twenty days since contact with an infected individual. The issue typically persists for seven to ten days.

While sores from the primary infection typicaly heal completely without scarring, the virus will still remain in the body. What it does is it goes to the nerve cells where it stays there in resting state. A recurrence is entirely possible, either in the same location or somewhere near it. There are cases where in patients encounter a recurrence every couple of weeks. There are also people who don't experience the infection in a long time.  

Recurrent Infections

Recurrence of the disorder is milder than the primary infections. They can be triggered by several different factors such as fever, sun exposure, a woman's menstrual period and trauma. There are even cases where in perfectly healthy and careful individuals experience a recurrence out of nowhere.

Cure for herpes simplex 1 infections has still yet to be developed. For the moment, topical treatments and medications are usually prescribed to relieve the symptoms and minimize the severity of the infections.  

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