Herpes is a viral infection, which is also commonly known as ‘Parisarp’ in Hindi & ‘Naagin’ in Marathi. Based on the body parts, which are affected by herpes, it is classified into two types, namely Type1 (Oral Herpes) & Type 2 (Genital Herpes). Herpes causes blisters or sores. And, it is transmitted by coming in the direct contact with the body fluid or cut of an infected individual. It may even be contracted in a no symptom period.
Herpes virus cannot be permanently cured. It tends to persist in the nerve tissue once it enters in your body. One can lower the risk of recurrent infections by changing your lifestyle and opting for better medical options like homeopathy, which helps in building the immunity thereby preventing recurrent infections & outbreaks.
Risk factors tend to increase your chance of contracting a disease. So, let us learn about the risk factors that can be responsible for the spread of herpes.
Here is a list of all the factors that may pose you at a risk of contracting herpes.
10 Risk Factors Of Herpes To Be Aware Of:
1. Low Immune System:
If you have a weakened immunity or low immunity then you are at a greater risk of getting affected by this viral infection of herpes. A weakened immunity too can make you suffer from its recurrent infections.
2. Skin To Skin Contact:
Herpes spreads through a skin to skin contact with a herpes-affected individual.
3. Sexual Contact:
Sexual contact with an infected individual is another common risk factor which can make one prone to this viral infection. Sexual contact that involves touching of the mouth or genitals, such as anal, vaginal, and oral sex. So, individuals having multiple sexual partners tend to be more vulnerable to herpes. Unprotected sex poses you at a higher risk of this infection. Also, heterosexual, homosexual and bisexual men are more prone to contracting herpes.
4. People With Sexually Transmitted Diseases:
Individuals, who happen to suffer from sexually transmitted diseases like AIDS, are more likely to get affected with herpes.
5. Direct Contact With A Body Fluid:
Herpes can be transmitted when you happen to come into the direct contact with the body fluid of an affected individual. Exposure to infected saliva, semen, vaginal fluid, or fluid from herpetic blisters is responsible for the spread of this viral infection.
6. Women Are More Susceptible Than Men:
Genital herpes is transmitted easily from men to women. So, it is known to be more common in the women than men. Women are more susceptible to contracting genital herpes. Also, the risk of this viral infection is highest among the young adults and teenagers.
7. From Infected Mother To Baby:
Babies, who are born to herpes-infected women, are at a greater risk of contracting this viral infection. Pregnant women may transfer this infection to their newborn.
8. Sharing Personal Belongings:
The sharing of personal belongings, such as razors, clothing, cups, lip balm, make-up, a towel, and utensils, is likely to spread this virus around. Do not share your personal belonging with anyone, and do not use personal belonging of other individuals.
Another prominent factor responsible for the recurrence of herpes is stress. If you are extremely stressed, you may suffer from the relapses of this diseases.
10. The Exposure To The Sun:
The exposure to excessive sunlight can aggravate the symptoms of herpes. So, it is advisable to use a good sunscreen when you plan to go out in the sun.
Now that you know these 10 risk factors which can make you vulnerable to herpes, make sure you avoid them. Work on reducing physical & mental stress. Practice regular exercises and good hygiene habits. Ensure you get adequate sleep. And, eat a healthy diet always. Stay happy and healthy.
- Written by Dr. Chetali, Associate doctor to Dr. Rajesh Shah
- Edited by Manjiri Kochrekar