Sex may be one of the best parts of life, but it also has its own challenges to navigate. Transmission of sexually transmitted infections and diseases, STI It is one of the biggest challenges you may face in your sexual life.
One of the most common STIs is herpes. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), an estimated 13% of people aged 15-49 have HSV-2, while an estimated 66% of people aged 0-49 have HSV-1. HSV-2 is almost exclusively sexually transmitted, with outbreaks occurring around the genitals and anus. HSV-1 is typically transmitted by mouth-to-mouth contact or mouth to genitals.
Just like other STIs, knowledge and beliefs about herpes are full of myths and misconceptions. It’s important to debunk these myths, de-stigmatize herpes, and normalize conversations about reproductive health.
Herpes Is Something To Shame On – False
One of the hardest things about herpes is the embarrassment that can come with it. Herpes and STIs in general are the crux of most jokes. Terms like “I’m clean” can perpetuate these feelings, as having an STI means you’re ‘dirty’.
The thing about herpes and many other STIs is that most of the time stigma is worse than reality. This means that while herpes is not life-threatening and the symptoms can be managed, the stigma around the virus creates psychological side effects and can affect mental health. These feelings are exacerbated by the cultural and societal stigma associated with sex in general.
Say it with me – herpes is nothing to be ashamed of!
Having Herpes Makes You Slutty – False
Because the stigma around herpes plays with cultural beliefs about gender, people often associate having herpes with being random or “bitch.” First of all, there’s nothing wrong with being a random person, as long as you feel strong and have fun.
That being said, anyone can get herpes. Whether you’ve had sex with one person or a hundred people. Also, remember that sex isn’t the only way herpes can be transmitted – learn more about that later. While a lot of people are holding back the word “slut” these days, if that’s you, then more power to you!
You Can Get Herpes From Just Sex – False
Before we get to the bottom of this, let’s clear up the term ‘sex’. Sex means something different to different people and define sexy yourself. For some people, sex means oral sex or manual stimulation, for others it includes anal, and for some it means genital-genital contact and/or penile or penetrating intercourse. sex toy.
As we mentioned earlier, HSV-1 is typically transmitted through oral contact. That means kissing and oral sex. It can also be contractual sharing utensils, lip balm, or a razor, although less common. Some people contracted HSV-1 as children when a family member kissed them.
Many people with HSV-1 never get an outbreak, but when they do, it’s often called herpes. It’s also possible to develop genital outbreaks from HSV-1 if you give oral sex to someone who has HSV-1.
HSV-2 is most commonly spread through oral or penetrating sex (anal, penis to vagina). It can also spread through skin-to-skin contact without penetration. In some cases, it can spread to babies through vaginal delivery if the gestational parent has an active (more recent) infection.
Herpes Cannot Be Cured – True and False
Yes, it’s true that once you get a cold sore, you have it for life. But that doesn’t mean you’ll always have outbreaks. Often the first outbreak is the worst, but once your body develops protective antibodies, outbreaks usually stop or decrease in intensity. Many people never experience an outbreak in the first place, which is one of the reasons herpes is so common.
Although you can’t cure herpes, you can treat and manage the symptoms. There is pharmaceutical drugs together natural tools You can use it to help keep herpes under control. Lifestyle changes that help support your immune system are incredibly helpful in managing symptoms, including eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and managing stress levels.
Herpes Will Change Your Sex Life – True
There is no way around it, a herpes diagnosis will most likely have some impact on your sex life. You may experience a period when you do not want to have sex and do not know. How to talk to partners about your STI or feeling shame around your body and diagnosis. These are normal feelings, but they don’t have to stop you from having a great sex life.
Many people who develop herpes report that it has actually improved their sex life. They may need to go through a period of adjustment and recovery after they have to learn how to communicate better with their sexual partners and be more creative about what intimacy is like for them. They may also be more mindful of who they have sex with, which can create opportunities for greater sexual satisfaction and less frustration.
Living with Herpes
We know how difficult it can be to get a diagnosis of herpes, whether it’s HSV1 or HSV2. It’s normal to go through a period of low self-worth and uncertainty as you learn to navigate this new part of your sexual health. It can take time to get used to living with herpes. If you think your diagnosis is affecting your mental health, it may be helpful to see a mental health practitioner such as the one below. sex therapist.
Know that you have done nothing wrong, you have nothing to be ashamed of and you can (and will) have an amazing sex life anyway!