Herpes Labialis

Herpes labialis or cold sores is a common infection that causes the growth of small fluid-filled blisters on the lips or around them, on the mouth and other areas of the face like the nose. The infection is caused by the herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) and in some particular cases by the herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2). You should know that the herpes simplex 1 is the virus which causes oral herpes while herpes simplex 2 is the one behind genital herpes.

herpes labialis

Herpes labialis symptoms

The first symptoms of an infection from HSV are sore, itchiness and the redness of the skin. After few days you have these symptoms, you will notice the formation of small pimples that eventually will become fluid-filled blisters. The fluid is clear at the beginning but it will become more yellow as the time passes. After other few days the blister are going to break open and heal slowly leaving you with some small crusts that will go away in about a week. Some symptoms you may have during the outbreak are headache, fever or nasuea.

What causes Herpes Labialis?

The herpes virus after it has infected the body, it lies dormant inside nerve cells until some events trigger its manifestation. Normally, the virus manifest on the skin in period of high level of stress or fatigue. This is because during these times our immune system is weaker than the normal. This is why it is also possible to experience herpes outbreaks in case of fever, menstruation, dehydration, when there are seasonal changes or very high or low temperature.

Herpes Labialis transmission:

The most common way to get infected with herpes labialis is through saliva. An infected person can transmit the infection just talking very close to another one. The easiest way to transmit the virus is through kisses. When the virus is going to manifest on the skin with blisters and vesicles I strongly suggest you to not touch the infected area and to be very careful when interacting with other people. This is because during this phase it is very easy to transmit the virus and infect others. I suggest you not to get in direct contact or talk too close to anyone until the blisters have been replaced with crusts.

Another way to transmit the virus is through indirect contact. For example, just touching an object previously handled by an infected person such as a towel or cutlery could be enough to get infected. As I previously mention, it is also possible to cause herpes labialis through the transmission of the HSV-2 which is the virus that cause genital herpes. This happens in the case you have oral intercourse with an infected partner. Since, this type of herpes can be sometimes asymptomatic you should be very careful if you are not too familiar with the person.

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