Personal health should be very important to every living being. It is a must that you do all that you can to stay protected and healthy, no matter what happens. One of the best ways to do so is through prevention.

There are several ways that one can prevent health issues. You can exercise, eat healthy, wash your hands, visit the doctor, or take supplements. However, sometimes prevention is not always as effective as we would like for it to be. One preventative measure that isn’t always for certain is sexual protection. Even if contraceptives are used, Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) can still be contracted. One of those STD’s is herpes simplex.

This infection is very common among those that are sexually active. It is an infection that can be contracted through skin contact, resulting in two types of the infection. It can be difficult to look for symptoms, since the virus that causes herpes can remain dormant for a period of time. Once the virus becomes active, it will travel through the nerves, causing outbreaks resulting in several symptoms.

One of the most common symptoms of herpes are cold sores. For the most part, they are usually located in genital areas such as the buttocks, penis, or vagina. These sores will usually appear as broken, red skin that can itch or be very painful. At times it may be very difficult to urinate, especially for women. Other symptoms include headaches, backaches, or flu-like symptoms, such as swollen lymph nodes.

If symptoms have appeared, it is in your best interest to obtain a proper diagnosis from a physician. Your doctor can properly test for herpes through several methods, such as a blood test. Known as the PCR test, this examination can determine if you are carrying the virus, even if symptoms aren’t present, providing the most accurate results. A physician can also properly test for herpes with a culture test; this requires samples removed from sores to see if they carry herpes cells.

After being tested, if it is found that you are in fact carrying the virus, your next step is treatment. While there is no cure for herpes, you can still assist with outbreaks. In most cases, medication will be prescribed to make living with herpes more manageable. Doctors can issue various prescriptions to deal with different cases, such as intermittent treatment, which is an anti-viral that is used during flare-ups. If outbreaks occur often, then a suppressive treatment may be prescribed that should be taken everyday.

As stated before, it is very important to be aware of your health. If at all it is determined that you have contracted herpes, it is your responsibility to manage living with this infection. You must get an accurate diagnosis from your physician, receive treatment, be aware of your symptoms, and inform your partner. Although there is no cure, you can still live life with herpes.