Herpes infections are caused by a type of virus that can infect men and women. The United States has been recording a declining number of Herpes cases in recent years. However, about half of the adults under age 50 are still infected with the oral herpes virus (HSV type 1), and nearly 1 in 8 have an infection with the genital herpes virus (HSV type 2). In genital herpes in men do not typically show symptoms. In fact, nearly two-thirds of genital herpes infected men had little-no symptoms in their initial stages.
What is herpes?
Herpes infection is a very common STD in the United States. According to the latest reports, more than one out of every six people who are aged between 14-49 years are infected with genital herpes. Most people affected by HSV have not been diagnosed since the disease play a silent game of showing no symptoms. Genital herpes infections are the most contagious form of infection where the disease primarily spread through genital contact or intimacy with an infected person.
What is genital herpes?
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) study, about 490 million people aged 15 to 49 have HSV-2 infection (genital herpes) across the world.
As per the new report from the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, genital herpes is an STD caused by one of the two types of viruses and these viruses are called herpes simplex virus (HSV-1 or HSV-2). Genital herpes is a type that causes pain, itching, and sores around the genital areas. But you may not show any signs or symptoms of genital herpes on the very first day or week. But if you get infected, you are still highly contagious even if you have no visible sores.
There’s no cure for genital herpes to date, but some anti-retroviral drugs can reduce the risk of infecting others and reduce the symptoms.
What are the herpes symptoms in men?
Herpes symptoms in men and so mild and most of the time the symptoms don’t even show up for a very long time. Herpes symptoms can also be recurring, off and on, for multiple years. Some people undergo numerous episodes of symptoms outbreak each year. But for many people, the outbreaks will become less frequent as time passes. However, it is important to remember that when the symptoms disappear, expect it to reappear after a while say days or weeks or years, but signs going off don’t necessarily mean you are cured.
In general, genital herpes symptoms may begin about 2 to 12 days after the initial exposure to the virus. The symptoms of herpes in men are:
- Small red bumps or tiny white blisters: These may appear after a few days to a few weeks.
- Pain or itching: pain and tenderness around your genital area until the infection clear out.
- Ulcers: These may form when blisters rupture and ooze. Ulcers can make it painful while passing urine.
Herpes STD can cause multiple outbreaks and during the initial outbreak, you can also experience flu-like signs such as swollen lymph nodes in the groin, headache, muscle aches, and fever.
Herpes symptoms in men also include sores in the following areas:
- Mouth (typically caused by HSV-)
- Buttocks and thighs
Herpes in penis
Genital herpes is one of the common sexually transmitted infections (STI) in the US that affects an estimated 8.2% of men between the ages of 14 to 49.
You will not even know you have herpes until you pass it to someone or get tested. Herpes infected man will experience pain and tenderness in the penis until the infection cures. Small red bumps and tiny white blisters may start appearing on and around the penis. If the blisters rupture an ulcer can start forming and it causes pain while passing urine. Herpes in the penis is very coming as they get transmitted easily when having sex with the infected person.
How does herpes spread?
There’s a common myth among individuals about catching HSV infection from toilet seats, bedding, or swimming pools, or from touching objects such as silverware, soap, or towels that have been touched by an infected person. Herpes cannot spread through other means unless it is intimate contact. HSV can spread from one person to another in the following ways:
- Sharing unwashed sex toys with others
- Genital contact with an infected person
- Oral sex when your partner has cold sores
- Vaginal or anal sex
Is Herpes curable?
Your doctor may first prescribe antiviral at an early stage when you start showing signs of herpes to suppress the virus and slow down the symptoms. Unfortunately, no drug can get rid of the herpes virus infection completely. Your physician will prescribe antiviral, such as acyclovir, famciclovir, and valacyclovir, the most recommended drugs for Herpes STD. However, it is highly recommended to consult your personal physician to know which works best for you.
There is no permanent cure for the herpes virus but these are anti-viral medications can suppress HSV. There is still a risk you may transfer herpes to another part of your body, by touching your sores and contacting your eye or mouth causing infection to spread through your oral fluids. So it is highly advisable to not touch the sores or fluids if you want to avoid spreading herpes to another part of your body.
How to prevent herpes?
The prevention for herpes is of similar measures as of preventing other sexually transmitted infections (STI). Good knowledge about sexual health and getting screened for STDs regularly is the best prevention against Herpes for both men and women. The following are the measures to be considered to reduce the risk of developing genital herpes:
- Avoid kissing if there is a cold sore around the oral cavity
- Avoid intercourse if you or your partner has herpes around the genital (anal, or skin-to-skin)
- Get screened for Herpes and other STDs regularly if you have had more than 1 sex partner in the past.