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Genital Herpes

Genital herpes is caused by the herpes simplex virus or HSV-2, which is the same virus that causes cold sores.

Oral and genital herpes are common sexually transmitted infections passed on by anal, vaginal, or oral sex. 

Symptoms such as burning or itching around the genitals, pain when urinating and small blisters around the genitals or bottom, can disappear on their own but they can also return.

Unfortunately, while there is no cure for genital herpes (or cold sores), there are treatments which can help relieve symptoms and prevent outbreaks.

At Pharmacy Online we have treatment options available for genital herpes.

Start a consultation to order a prescription today. Our team provides professional and confidential advice. Next day delivery available. 

What is genital herpes?

It's a sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by the herpes simplex virus Type I (HSV-1) or Type II (HSV-2).

Genital herpes is a lifelong condition that can cause recurring outbreaks of genital sores. After the first outbreak of symptoms has run its course, future outbreaks tend to be milder and shorter in duration than the first.

Recurrences usually occur within days or weeks after an asymptomatic period (when there are no signs or symptoms).

Either type can cause genital herpes if the infected person has not been exposed to that kind of herpes virus before.

The herpes viruses are spread through skin to skin contact, including oral sex with a sexual partner. HSV-1 infections are usually milder than genital HSV-2 infections.

Both types of herpes simplex virus infections can be found in and on the body, but they usually cause infections in different places.

What are the symptoms of genital herpes virus?

In most people with a healthy immune system, HSV-1 and HSV-2 do not cause any visible symptoms.

However, when someone who has an active infection does show symptoms, they can vary greatly depending on where or how long it's been since their last outbreak.

Some people experience minor symptoms like itching and burning during their first outbreak; others may have no noticeable signs at all until the second outbreak occurs months later.

Some people with genital herpes may experience a return of signs and symptoms 4 to 6 weeks after initial onset. These outbreaks are usually milder and shorter in duration than the first outbreak.

People who have repeated recurrences of genital herpes often refer to them as “flare-ups” or “outbreaks.”

The symptoms of genital herpes can vary greatly depending on whether you're experiencing an initial episode or recurring episodes, but common signs and symptoms include:

- Flu-like symptoms, including fever for up to three days (mild)
- Swollen lymph nodes (swollen glands)
- Fatigue (tiredness) lasting more than 12 hours
- Muscle aches and pains lasting more than 12 hours
- A headache that lasts longer than 12 hours
- Small painful blisters or lesions (open sores) that appear within 24 hours. Sometimes these blisters break open and become sores made up of fluid filled bubbles called vesicles. Lesions are itchy several days before they appear. The sores eventually crust over and heal without scarring in 2 to 3 weeks if left untreated.

The length of time between recurrences varies from person to person, but it's typically less frequent than during the first herpes outbreak.

If you catch the herpes virus during sexual intercourse without barrier protection (e.g., condoms), symptoms tend to appear 2 weeks after initial exposure with either type:

- Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 which causes oral lesions around mouth area.
- Herpes Simplex Virus Type 2 causes genital sores on and around the genitals only.

If left untreated, these outbreaks will recur every few weeks until they eventually disappear altogether when your immune system becomes strong enough to fight off the infection over time.

How to treat genital herpes outbreaks

While there is no cure for genital herpes, it is manageable with medicines.

Genital herpes treatment comes in the form of antiviral medications, which are available as creams, tablets and capsules. They can stop the symptoms getting worse if you start taking the medication within 5 days of an outbreak.

They can also reduce the frequency of recurrent outbreaks of genital herpes by more than half. The frequency of recurrences varies widely between individuals, but most people experience fewer recurrences after they've been taking antivirals for a while (usually at least several months).

The type of antiviral that you take depends on the severity of symptoms and whether or not you've previously been treated for an outbreak.

When used correctly, they can also reduce the risk of transmission to others when you have an active lesion on your skin (especially in areas where HSV-1 strains cause cold sore outbreaks).

How to prevent a genital herpes outbreak

The frequency of recurrences varies widely between individuals. Some people have no recurrences at all, while others experience them once a year, every few months, or even every few weeks.

In addition to recognising the symptoms of your own infection, it's also important to keep in mind that there may be factors that affect how often you get recurrent outbreaks.

Once the virus is in your body, it stays there. The best way to try and avoid an outbreak is to avoid known triggers:

- UV light i.e. sunbeds
- Tight clothing
- Smoking
- Alcohol

There are also triggers that are unavoidable, but worth bearing in mind:

- Being ill
- Stress
- Hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle
- A weakened immune system

If you have frequent outbreaks, you may benefit from taking antiviral medication daily.

Suppressive therapy reduces the frequency of genital herpes recurrences by about 70%. It's also effective at reducing transmission to partners and preventing HSV-2 if a woman is pregnant.

How to limit the spread of a sexually transmitted infection

Genital herpes and oral herpes are spread through unprotected vaginal sex, anal sex, or oral sex.

There are multiple ways to help limit the spread of the STDs, including:

- Abstination
- Stay with one sexual partner
- Use condoms and dental dams
- Communicate with sexual partners
- Avoid sexual contact, including vaginal, anal sex or oral sex if you or your partner has blisters or genital sores, or if you experience the tingling or itching sensation that indicates an outbreak is imminent
- Not sharing sex toys

Why Shop With Pharmacy Online?

At Pharmacy Online we are dedicated to improving the lives of our patients living with genital herpes. We aim to provide the best antiviral treatment such as antiviral medications for genital herpes to help treat outbreaks, relieve pain, and shorten outbreaks.

We are able to provide antiviral therapy from initial treatment, to intermittent treatment as required, to suppressive treatment if you suffer with regular outbreaks.

We have a wide range of antiviral medicines suitable for you, in both pill form and cream.

You can count on our pharmaceutical services to deliver your medicine quickly and efficiently at low prices.

If you require prescription medication to treat your genital herpes, look no further than Pharmacy Online – we have everything you need to get you back to normal.

Take An Online Assessment

Get your genital herpes treatments quickly and discreetly through Pharmacy Online.

We offer patients a free online prescriber service.

Simply take our short medical assessment - answer questions about your health and medications, and a member of our healthcare team will make sure you get the right treatment for your genital herpes.

After completing the online assessment, we'll send your medicine discreetly to you at home. 

For a quick and convenient way to access your prescription drugs for your genital herpes, take an online assessment with our online pharmacy today.

Would You Like to Speak to a Pharmacist?

If you have concerns about your genital herpes or oral herpes medicine, ask a member of our team about the available treatment options we have today.