Although there is no cure for herpes, it can be treated using medications and home remedies. Symptoms clear up by themselves but the blisters can come back (an outbreak or recurrence). Treatment from a sexual health clinic can help.
Treatment the first time you have genital herpes
You may be prescribed:antiviral medicine to stop the symptoms getting worse – you need to start taking this within 5 days of the symptoms appearing. Creams for the pain can also help.If you’ve had symptoms for more than 5 days before you go to a sexual health clinic, you can still get tested to find out the cause.
Treatment the recurrent outbreaks
The average number of outbreaks for a person with genital HSV-2 is four to five per year; HSV-1 is less than one outbreak per year. Usually, there are more outbreaks during the first year, but, over time, outbreaks tend to happen less often and be less severe. Herpes “triggers” (determining exactly what leads to an outbreak) are highly individual. Illness, poor diet, emotional or physical stress, friction in the genital area, prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light (commonly for oral herpes), surgical trauma, and steroidal medication (such as asthma drugs) may trigger a herpes outbreak. The frequency of outbreaks can often be managed through effective stress management, and getting adequate rest, nutrition, and exercise. For people with frequent outbreaks, suppressive (daily) therapy with any one of the antiviral treatments can reduce outbreaks by as much as 80%.
There are a variety of treatment options:
Several home remedies can help, including:
- taking painkillers, such as aspirin, acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin)
- bathing in lightly salted water helps relieve symptoms
- place lukewarm or cool cloths on the sore place
- soaking in a lukewarm sitz bath
- keep the affected area dry and clean
- avoiding tight clothing around the affected area, wearing loose-fitting clothes
- washing hands thoroughly, especially after touching the affected area
- wear cotton underwear
- refraining from sexual activity until symptoms have gone
- if urinating is painful, apply some cream or lotion like lidocaine to the urethra.
- Using ice packs can help in a way. But never apply ice directly to the skin, always wrap it in a cloth or towel first.
No drug can get rid of the herpes virus. Doctors may prescribe an antiviral, such as acyclovir(Zovirax), which prevents the virus from multiplying. famciclovir(Famvir) and valacyclovir(Valtrex) may also occur on the prescription list. Those Antiviral medications will help the outbreak clear up faster and will also help reduce the severity of symptoms.
Doctors usually prescribe antivirals the first time a person has symptoms. As recurrent outbreaks are usually mild, treatment is not usually necessary.
- during treatment, do not eat spicy food, no drinking;
- have a good rest to prevent fatigue and affected area friction;
- refrain from vaginal, oral, or anal sex in case of secondary infection;