Herpes – Because there is no cure for it, being diagnosed with Herpes can leave one feeling perplexed, depressed and hopeless. However, as people begin to learn more about Herpes, including a variety of available treatment options, they are better equipped to manage the virus, and even minimize the number and severity of embarrassing outbreaks.
Herpes Simplex can be used to characterize as many as 50 different viruses including Epstein Barr virus, chicken pox and shingles. However, most often it is the term used to describe the two most common forms of it known simply as Herpes Simplex Virus 1 (HSV1), which commonly affects the mouth area or Herpes Simplex Virus 2 (HSV2), which commonly affects the genital area. It is important to be aware that both strains can appear on other parts of the body, but HSV1 is typically relegated to areas above the waist and HSV2 below the waist.
Once a person has become infected with either form of this highly contagious herpes virus, it never goes away. Instead, it lies dormant in the central nervous system and surfaces intermittently in the appearance of blisters or lesions in the area where it was first contracted. During an outbreak, a person will sometimes feel flu-like symptoms, swollen glands and experience bouts of low energy. In more severe cases, sufferers experience severe pain associated with the cold sore or genital lesions. As frustrating as these symptoms can be, people suffering from Herpes should know that there are both medical and holistic treatment options available to help them suppress these aggravating outbreaks.
Medications like Choraphor, Zovirax, Valtrex and Famvir are commonly prescribed by doctors to lessen the length and severity of active outbreaks, but are only typically prescribed to those with severe cases. Other long-term oral medications are also available to suppress frequent severe outbreaks. However, many who are concerned with drug side effects avoid these options.
More natural approaches have sought to suppress outbreaks by strengthening the body, in general. These practices include reducing stress, which can sometimes trigger an outbreak, as well as getting proper rest, making dietary adjustments and using supplements that build the body’s natural immune defense. Vitamins A, B, B12, C and E are all great immune boosters. Also, Beta Carotene, Chromium, Copper, Chromium, Iron, Selenium and Zinc possess excellent immune strengthening and anti-oxidant rich properties. Food choices high in garlic and the omega 3 fatty acids found in certain varieties of fish further contribute to the immune strengthening cause and should become a regular part of a diet working to keep Herpes at bay. In addition, herbal remedies, such as Echinacea and Goldneseal are also powerful defenses.
It’s important that people infected with the Herpes virus avoid foods that are high in the amino acid arginine, such as chocolate, nuts, barley, corn, white breads and pastas, Arginine helps in nourishing the virus. Instead, foods that are higher in the amino acid lysine, like salmon, beets and a variety of dairy products should be increased.
Awareness of the various treatment options that your body best responds to is a formidable weapon in your arsenal against the virus. Of course, taking steps to avoid contracting herpes or spreading it is always the best case scenario, but if you are already affected by it, empower yourself through education and take strides to keep Herpes under control.