Vaginal Herpes: What is It and How to Prevent It

July 23, 2019
Vaginal herpes is a common sexually transmitted infection. Today, we'll tell you a few ways to prevent it.

Vaginal herpes is a sexually transmitted infection. Nowadays, it’s currently a major public health problem. However, this is a sexually transmitted infection that’s easy to prevent if you adopt a series of measures during your sexual encounters.

In this article, you’ll find out more about vaginal herpes and some ways to avoid contracting it.

Vaginal Herpes is a Sexually Transmitted Infection

A woman with herpes.
Vaginal herpes is a sexually transmitted infection that manifests with genital sores. It may also come with pain or itching.

Genital herpes isn’t an STD (sexually transmitted disease). This term is only correct when an STI (sexually transmitted infection) evolves (that is, when it becomes a disease). For example, this occurs when the human papillomavirus turns into uterine cancer.

In Sexually transmitted infections: epidemiology and control, the researchers take a closer look at this infection.

Herpes’ main feature is the presence of a painful open sore or ulcer. Also, it may ooze liquid.

However, this kind of STI is asymptomatic for the most part. This means some people may have herpes and not even know it. Therefore, they may not take appropriate measures to protect their sexual partners from infection. In fact, people may have a small sore that’s not painful and may just think it’s a wound.

The best course of action in these cases is to go to the doctor to get tested regularly. They can rule out any possibility of an STI. Likewise, they can also confirm that you have a sexually transmitted infection. Lack of awareness could only lead you to continue to spread herpes.

You may be interested: Vaginal Infections, Types and Causes

There’s No Cure for Vaginal Herpes

Vaginal herpes has no cure. This is important to keep in mind. This should increase your motivation when it comes to protecting yourselves against STIs.

However, you can control your symptoms.

That said, keep in mind that herpes can come back at any time.

The reason why herpes has no cure is that it is a virus. So, don’t believe you’re fine once the symptoms subside due to appropriate treatment. Avoid sexual contact when you have sores or do so after taking the appropriate precautions.

Forms of Prevention

A couple in bed, the man's opening a condom.
Condoms are always the best form of protection against sexually transmitted infections and STDs.

To prevent contagion of vaginal herpes, always follow a series of protective measures. Here are a few of them to keep in mind:

  • Always use a condom during vaginal, anal and oral penetration.
  • Don’t touch any open wounds. If the condom doesn’t cover a wound within the genital area, then avoid sex with that person. The chances of contracting herpes are high in this scenario.
  • Wash your hands and do so often.

If you’re already infected, ask your doctor about acyclovir and valacyclovirThese drugs help heal ulcers and reduce pain.

You might be interested: 6 Steps to Treat Vaginal Yeast Infections Naturally

Recommendations to Avoid Vaginal Herpes

Condoms are very effective methods to protect yourself from STDs and STIs. Therefore, they’re essential even when you take contraceptives to avoid unwanted pregnancies. It’s important that you know that keeping condoms around and using them is essential during any type of sex (oral and anal included). This is, above all, necessary if you have many sexual partners.

Besides, you should take appropriate measures when you know you have vaginal herpes. Inform your sexual partners that you have an STI. Do so before you have any sexual contact with them.

The most effective way to not spread your STI is to avoid any sexual contact during outbreaks. However, you shouldn’t have outbreaks if you follow the appropriate treatment.

Remember, there’s no cure for STIs such as vaginal herpes. Thus, you may have an outbreak at any point. It’s very important to protect yourself.

  • Hernández Cortina, Abdul. (2008). INFECCION POR HERPES SIMPLE GENITAL: REVISION GLOBAL. Revista Habanera de Ciencias Médicas7(4) Recuperado en 19 de abril de 2019, de http://scielo.sld.cu/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1729-519X2008000400019&lng=es&tlng=es.
  • Navarro, D., Navalpotro, D., & Fraile, O. (2005). Actualización en el diagnóstico del herpes genital.
  • Sánchez-Crespo Bolaños, José Ramón, & González Hernando, Carolina. (2010). Herpes Genital. Revista Clínica de Medicina de Familia3(2), 124-126. Recuperado en 19 de abril de 2019, de http://scielo.isciii.es/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1699-695X2010000200013&lng=es&tlng=es.