103: Oral Herpes Down There With Alexandra Harbushka

Life With Herpes


Hi guys and welcome to today's episode. I’m getting a ton of questions on genital herpes and oral herpes and it can be pretty confusing so today I want to spend some time on HS1 when it’s down there.

A lot of questions I hear are:
  • “I have HSV1 but I also have genital herpes, so does that mean I have HSV2 also?”
  • “I have HSV1 but I don't get cold sores.”
  • “If I have HSV1 down there can my partner get it on their mouth?”
  • “I’m confused because I have genital herpes but HSV1 is oral herpes.”
In general, we are told to think oral herpes is only HSV1 and it can only be around your mouth and the “other” kind is genital herpes and its HSV2. This is 100% false and really they are no different from each other.  For the sake of understanding, today’s message let’s get away from associating oral herpes with HSV1. Let's just use HSV1 and HSV2.

With fun sexual activities like oral sex, herpes can be transmitted from someone orally to their partner genitally or visa versa genially to their partner's mouth.  This is why so many people are getting oral herpes down there. To make sure we all know how common herpes is, ⅔ people have HSV1 and ⅙ people have HSV2. These statistics show there are more people with HSV1 and therefore it’s very common to be diagnosed with genital HSV1.

It’s important to find out from your doctor when you are diagnosed with herpes if it’s HSV1 or HSV2. This way you can have a conversation with your partner and your potential future partners. For example, if partner A has HSV1 genitally and partner B has HSV2 genitally they can transmit herpes to each other because they are different strains of the virus. I’ve seen this actual situation happen to a number of couples and then boom...a whole new outbreak.


So the bottom line is HSV1 and HSV2 can go wherever you give it a place to go. The previous categories of genital vs oral are not specific enough and in order to fully communicate with our lovers we need to know what strain and where we have it.

DM me if you have any questions on this topic or need some clarification. See you next week.



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