What Is Herpes?
Herpes, whether oral or genitals, is caused by a family of over 70 related viruses. Herpes appear as fluid-filled blisters on the skin and mucous membranes. There are actually eight different types of herpes simplex viruses that both children and adults can acquire, but two are by far the most common: HSV-1 and HSV-2.
HSV-1 causes oral herpes. It usually causes cold sore breakouts around the lips or mouth, commonly known as fever blisters. Someone can become infected with HSV-1 starting as a child, and then the virus can lay dormant in the body until the immune system is weakened.
HSV-2 is described as genital herpes because it usually causes cold sores to erupt around the genitalia. Both types of herpes viruses are highly contagious, and both can cause cold sores in either area of the body.
Genital herpes is perhaps one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). The herpes virus can permanently live dormant inside a person’s immune system, causing blisters or breakouts periodically that burst and turn into open cold sores or ulcers before healing. Genital herpes can be painful, causing inflammation and burning sensation.
The virus that causes both genital and oral herpes is not curable, though there are many natural herpes remedies that can help keep breakout at bay and put herpes into remission.
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You can keep herps virus dormant by boosting your immune system through a healthy diet, making healthy lifestyle changes and being cautious during periods of active breakouts. Certain steps can significantly reduce the chances of having reoccurring herpes symptoms and lower the risk that you’ll pass the virus to someone else. Here are the natural ways to keep genital herpes virus dormant.
Natural Remedies For Getting Rid of Herpes
Some people with herpes infection actually experience breakouts of cold sores all through their lifetime or even after initially becoming infected.
Foods to Help Herpes Treatment
To avoid periodic genital herpes outbreak, you need to boost your immune system by including the following foods in your diet to keep the virus dormant as much as possible:
Orange and Red Vegetables
These vegetables are rich in antioxidants, such as carotenoids, bioflavonoids and vitamin C, which helps with skin/wound healing and raise overall immunity.
READ ALSO: All to Know About Female Genital Sores
Clean, Lean Protein
Protein is the building blocks of the body, the body cannot heal without sufficient protein intake. Try to get at least four to five ounces of quality protein per meal. Some of the best protein foods include beef, wild-caught fish and poultry.
Foods Rich in L-lysine
This amino acid which includes foods such as vegetables, fish, legumes, turkey, and chicken, may prevent replication of the herpes virus.
Fish provides essential omega-3 fatty acids which help with inflammation and to repair tissue.
Foods Rich in Zinc
Zinc is required in many chemical reactions that help rebuild skin and protect the body from viruses or infections. Topical zinc formulas are effective for cold sore treatment and also for prolonging remissions in herpes. Consume more foods rich in protein such as pumpkin seeds, liver, beef, nuts, and spinach.
Essential oils that can help treat herpes include tea tree oil, myrrh oil, and clove oil. Tea tree oil is one of the most common oils used on the skin for its natural antiviral and antibacterial properties. Apply these essential oils three times daily to areas where cold sores are present. For those with sensitive skin, try diluting any of these oils with a carrier oil like coconut oil or jojoba oil before using.
Easing Cold Sore Pain Naturally
If you develop herpes cold sores on your mouth or genitals, there are several ways you can help lower pain and improve healing. Simply observe the following tips:
- Avoid touching any open sores during or before an outbreak. Wash your hands properly every time you do.
- Avoid sharing a toothbrush, lip balm or makeup with others to lower risk for transmission. Get a new toothbrush once a sore is healed to avoid getting re-infected from secretions that remain on toothbrush.
- Avoid kissing someone if you have an open sore or share drinks and utensils.
- Use natural, mild soap and warm water on sores to reduce irritation. Don’t pick, attempt to pop or rub sores.
- If a sore cause pain, press a warm towel against the affected area to lessen pain, or sit in a warm bath or shower to allow the heat reach the area where it hurts.
- Use a separate towel on your genitals near any open sores than you use on your mouth to avoid transmitting the virus from one location of your body to another.
- Avoid applying store-bought anti-itch creams, vaseline, salves or other products that can aggravate swelling. Use natural essential oils instead.
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- Antiviral herbs: These include elderberry, calendula, echinacea, garlic, astragalus and licorice root.
- Lemon balm extract: This can be applied as a topical cream for healing.
- L-lysine (1,000 milligrams three times daily): Can help treat and prevent outbreaks.
- B-complex (50 milligrams daily): B vitamins help your body deal with stress and can keep outbreaks at bay.
- Vitamin C (1,000 milligrams daily): Vitamin C boosts immune function improving herpes.
- Zinc (30 milligrams twice daily): Zinc helps support immune function, keeping viruses dormant and renewing skin tissue to accelerate the healing process.
Foods that Can Worsen Herpes
Consuming certain foods can weaken immune defenses, cause skin irritation, and raise inflammation. Avoid the following foods as much as possible to limit outbreak severity and duration.
Excessive intake of alcohol or foods that contain alcohol can suppress immune function and can worsen symptoms like fatigue, aches and skin inflammation. Avoid tobacco smoking too.
Avoid Added Sugar
Consuming sugar in large quantity also weakens the immune function and can make inflammation worse. Foods with added sugar to avoid includes bottled drinks, packaged snacks, and flavored products like yogurt, cereal, granola bars and refined grains.
Avoid Packaged, Processed foods
The majority of processed, packaged foods contain hydrogenated oils and grains that can weaken immune function. These foods tend to cause allergies, worsened inflammation, and essentially provide little more than empty calories.
Sources: healthline.com, draxe.com
Disclaimer: The content provided on healthdiary365.com is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical doctor or healthcare professional.