HSV 1 Does Not Mean You Have Oral Herpes

153_ HSV 1 Does Not Mean You Have Oral Herpes - alexandra harbushka blog

HSV 1 Can Be Genital Herpes

One of the most common misconceptions I hear when I read comments or get asked questions are about oral herpes and HSV 1.  So let’s break it down and get right to it. 

Before we break it down let’s just do the 101 on herpes. There’s two types; HSV 1 & HSV 2. Both have very similar symptoms and we can not tell one virus apart from the other one unless testing is done.  HSV 1 prefers to live in the oral region meanwhile HSV 2 prefers to live in the genial region. However, the virus will live or go wherever you give it a place to go. In other words, HSV 1 can be genital and HSV 2 can be oral. More people have HSV 1, its ⅔ globally and ⅙ globally  have HSV 2. If you want more information on HSV you can go here where I give a full breakdown of symptoms and all sorts of goodies.

HSV1 is  known as oral herpes or because we don’t like to use the word herpes we call them cold sores or fever blisters. Oral herpes is also known as the “good” herpes and genital herpes is known as the “bad herpes”.  This is total BS and I’ll get on that subject another time. But here’s the shocker...HSV 1 can also be genital herpes. Mic Drop! 

I get tons of DM’s and emails with people asking about having HSV 1 and either assuming it’s oral or wondering why they’re getting outbreaks down there.  This can be confusing, especially because there’s not a lot of education on the matter. 

First thing I want you to look at when you’re diagnosed with herpes is, where is your outbreak? Is it orally or is it genitally? Don’t assume that because you have HSV1 that it's not genital herpes. If you have herpes in your genital region then you have genital herpes regardless of HSV 1 or HSV 2. Make sense? 

In the past and past generations we were not so careful about transmitting herpes. Maybe it wasn’t  a big deal or maybe we just didn’t know. I really don’t know. But in the last generation we've done a much better job of reducing the risk of HSV 1  being orally transmitted. So that’s good news! But we’re still getting herpes and we’re not getting it up there. Instead we’re getting it down there.  I’ve seen a ton of new cases especially with millennials getting genital HSV 1. This goes back to we’re not educating our society that HSV 1 is also sexually transmitted.  This is always such a shock and super confusing to people when they get their diagnosis. For reasons I’m sure you understand. 

Here’s the deal. I’m going over this so that you can have more information and use this to educate your partners or give you answers to your diagnosis. It really doesn’t matter what type you have nor does it matter where you have it. Yes there's a HUGE stigma about having genital herpes but at the end of the day it’s herpes. 

When starting a new sexual relationship with someone I recommend having your partner get tested before you jump in bed together. Because so many people have HSV 1 and a lot of them don’t even know it  most likely your partner has HSV 1. They either don’t not know they have it or are not aware that their fever blisters is herpes and is sexually transmitted. 

Education is power so you can now take this and decide how you want to handle it. 

 Of course let me know if you have any questions on this. 

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