In the accompanying video, Dr. Lisa Orelind describes the symptoms of genital herpes. If you have oral herpes, your symptoms may include a fever, fever blisters, swollen glands, and a sore throat, all these are just synonymous with having cold sores. For genital herpes, one’s symptoms generally are fluid-filled blisters which become painful sores. As these sores start to heal, a crust will cover them, over a time period of a couple of weeks. A herpes outbreak may be mistaken to be a case of “jock itch”, a razor burn, or a yeast infection.
Dr. Orelind describes the current confusion in the popular understanding of herpes. Only 10 – 20% of people who have Type 2 herpes actually have any genital sores or lesions. But, what does it mean to have a genital herpes lesion?
An ulceration on the genitals from herpes is like getting an abrasion from a skin scrape. The top skin is wiped off, and there’s a sore underneath. It’s just an open, painful wound before it scabs over and heals. It can start off as a tingling, burning itch or mild pain, followed by tiny blisters, then afterward followed by small, painful ulcerations.
Many people are positive for Type 2 herpes without showing any symptoms. So, even if you’ve never had an outbreak of herpes, you may in fact be positive for herpes, and thus be a carrier. The only way to know for sure if you are a carrier is to get tested for herpes.
How does one know if they are infected or not? The only way to remove any doubt whether you are infected is to take a herpes test.