How do Herpes Medications Work?

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Your medication can help make outbreaks less severe.

Herpes infections require antiviral medications. Unlike antibiotics’ ability to destroy bacterial infections, antivirals can’t kill a virus. They do, however, help minimize symptoms and speed up the healing process.

One main difference between a bacterial infection and one that’s viral is that most bacterial infections can be cured. Viral infections could survive for a lifetime, with the virus only going into a type of dormant stage when the infection isn’t flared up.

Antibiotics have no effect on a virus, so your treatment choices include several antivirals that are known to have a healing effect on the sores caused by a HSV-1 or HSV-2 outbreak. While they can’t free you from the infection, they can make life a lot more comfortable and pleasant.

Understanding Herpes Can Help Clarify How Your Prescription Works

Herpes is one of the most common viral infections, and there are two different viruses to blame: Herpes simplex type 1 (HSV-1) and herpes simplex type 2 (HSV-2).

More often regarded as a sexually transmitted disease, that’s not always the case. An outbreak can happen on almost any part of the body, although they’re more common in certain areas.

HSV-1 is often the cause of infections of the mouth, and cold sores are the usual result. A cold sore begins with a tingling and itching sensation. People who have never experienced one might not understand. People who are prone to cold sores recognize the onset of an outbreak almost instantly, sometimes before there is any visible indication at all.

HSV-2 causes genital herpes. However, MIT Medical explains that while this strain has usually been regarded as the most common cause, HSV-1 is responsible for more genital outbreaks than HSV-2.

HSV-1 is much more widespread than HSV-2. Over 50 percent of the population have the HSV-1 virus, while less than 16 percent carry HSV-2.

Either strain of herpes can affect the mouth or the genitals.

Shingles can be an extraordinarily painful eruption of blisters on the trunk of the body. It’s not the same as herpes, bit it’s treated with the same medications. Varicella-zoster, the same virus that causes chickenpox, is responsible for a shingles outbreak.

Keeping stress low can help minimize outbreaks.
The Differences Between HSV-1 and HSV-2 Determine the Risk of Recurring Outbreaks

Whether you have HSV-1 or HSV-2, you can experience an outbreak at any time. The virus is always there, and there are many triggers, such as sunlight and stress, that can set off the reaction.

With HSV-1 affecting the genitals, you’re less likely to experience repeated outbreaks than if you have HSV-2 — HSV-2 of the genitals has a higher incidence of relapse.

The symptoms of each strain are very similar. The location of the infection plays a bigger role in how it affects you than the strain that you carry.

When either strain of herpes affects the mouth, MIT says you’ll likely experience the typical pain, tingling, burning, and itching sensations. In time, the affected area produces blisters, which take a week or longer to heal.

The symptoms of genital herpes with either strain of the virus are broader. They can include painful urination; pain, burning, itching, and tingling on or around the genitals or buttocks; and blisters that take a week or more to heal.

It’s important to know that you can spread either herpes virus, even when you aren’t experiencing an outbreak. Because the virus never dies, contact with the virus can spread it to another person.

How HSV-1 and HSV-2 are Treated

Herpes is usually treated with the antiviral medications, acyclovir, famcyclovir (Famvir), and valacyclovir (Valtrex). Denavir is another medication that’s often prescribed for the treatment of cold sores.

Most antivirals for herpes come in tablet form, and can be used in different ways. Some people prefer a medication approach that treats the outbreaks when they happen. This means the antiviral is only used as needed.

Other patients prefer a suppressive-therapy approach, where medication is taken daily to help avoid outbreaks. Your doctor can help determine which is a better method for you. For people with compromised immune systems, a suppressive therapy is sometimes a better choice than waiting for an outbreak and then treating it.

Denavir is a topical medication that comes in a tube. It’s applied on the cold sore blisters, which helps them heal faster.

Understand your triggers, and you might have a bit more control.
Potential Flare-Up Triggers

Because the herpes virus is dormant more often than not, at least in most people, figuring out your triggers can help you gain a little control over the situation. Just remember that while some triggers are avoidable, some aren’t.

Sunlight and the so-called common cold have long been regarded as cold sore triggers. But while the connection is a popular one, there’s no scientific evidence that proves either is the cause of an outbreak. To be safe, you can limit sun exposure. Avoiding colds is a bit more challenging.

WebMD says some patients report experiencing outbreaks that seem related to the friction of sex. A water-based lubricant might help, but avoid lubricants with spermicides. They contain irritants that could cause more harm than good.

Hormonal changes are also linked to herpes outbreaks. Unfortunately, there is no clear reason why the connection exists. This is common in women with genital herpes, and controlling hormonal changes is unlikely.

People with weakened immunities, such as those who are undergoing chemo or who have HIV, are more prone to herpes outbreaks than people whose immunities are stronger.

Living with herpes produces its fair share of difficulties. More than half the population has one herpes virus or the other, although there are many more with HSV-1 than HSV-2.

Antiviral medications can help make managing the virus and viral outbreaks much easier, and it all starts with your doctor.

Some patients are better suited to targeted medication to control outbreaks as they happen. Others need antiviral therapy to help reduce the possibility of outbreaks. Once you know which approach is right, the good news is that these medications can help lessen the effects of an outbreak, and help you heal faster. sells the antiviral medications, Famvir, Valtrex, Acyclovir, and Denavir, that can help you live a more comfortable life. We offer privacy and convenience of shopping online, and your discreetly-packed shipment arrives right at your door. If you’re ready to try something that works, see what has to offer.

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