Herpies/Herpes infection is among the most prevalent of viral infections on the planet, and it is present in all major regions of the earth. Thus, gaining an insight into this infection, and its causative agents is going to serve people well because practically everyone is susceptible to it. The causative agent of the infections commonly bunched under the term herpies infection are the Herpies Simplex Virus 1 and 2 (herpies 1, herpies 2), with both belonging to the same family, Herpiesviridae. These two viruses are primarily responsible for causing the oral and genital herpies respectively. Thus, gaining an insight into what they are, and how they spread from one host to another can be helpful in containing the transmission of this infection. Preventive measures are of particular importance, because as neurotropic and neuro-invasive viruses, they are immune to complete cure by even the most potent of antiviral medications.
Dynamics of the Herpies Simplex Virus:
Both the herpies 1 and herpies 2 viruses are DNA virus, which means that they contain deoxyribonucleic acid as their genetic material. These virus particles attach to various protein receptors present on the skin surface, and then make their way into the cells of their targeted hosts. Once inside the host cells, the virion can hijack the entire machinery of the infected cells, and use them to produce proteins and new DNA material for the purpose of creating more virus particles. Therefore, the herpies simplex virus is able to utilize the resources available inside its host cells to its own benefits and in the end make their way out of those doomed cells in a far greater number.
Why does the Herpies Simplex Virus Comeback?
Herpies simplex virus has devised a number of mechanisms to evade the host immune system, as well as, suppress the cellular machinery involved in making the presence of any such infection known to the host. Thus, it is able to survive inside the host for long without any chance of detection, which provides it with precious time to replicate and leave the host cells in large numbers. The herpies virus makes its way to the nerve ganglia where it can stay in a latent state, which makes it practically impossible to clear it completely from an infected host, even after the administration of the most effective antiviral medications available. The virus stays in the cell body of the neurons during the latest stage when they produce no symptoms, and it may seem to the host they have been cured of this infection. However, under the presence of a number of triggering factors, the virus reactivates and makes their way to the skin surface through the axons of the neurons they have infected.
How do you get Herpies 1 Virus? (Oral Herpies)
Both the herpies viruses (herpies 1, herpies 2) are highly contagious during this activated phase even if they do not produce strong distinctive symptoms. This is because the body constantly sheds the virus particles during this stage, and any close intimate contact with an infected host leaves any uninfected person highly vulnerable to infection. Between the two viruses, herpies 1 virus is more adapt at surviving for long periods outside the host. Thus, it can spread easily through contaminated articles of regular use such as drinking glasses and utensils. This virus predominantly causes the oral herpies, which results in the formation of blisters and ulcers in the oral region, and the adjoining areas. Thus, kissing someone showing visible signs of this infection is bound to make a person highly susceptible to getting this virus. Apart from the oral variety, this virus can be the causative agent behind some the genital herpies as well. This happens when a person engages in oral sex with an infected partner, and particularly if blisters and cold sores are present on the mouth during any encounter.
How do you get Herpies 2 Virus? (Genital Herpies)
Herpies 2 virus, on the other hand is the primary causative agent of genital herpies. In fact, this virus causes one of the most widespread of sexually transmitted diseases in the world. However, this virus does not survive for any length of time outside its human host. Therefore, it is not possible to get this infection by sharing utensils, drinking glasses, and towels with an infected person. Thus, the most likely route for the transmission of this disease is through sexual contact with an infected host. Use of safe-sex items can only provide modest protection against this virus because it can spread through adjoining areas not covered by the latex sheath. Moreover, female are at a higher risk than men of getting this infection from an infected partner. Apart from causing blisters and ulcers in the genitals and the adjoining area such as thighs and buttock, this virus can also cause sores in the mouth or eyes in case of the contact between the these regions and the infected genitalia.
The herpies simplex virus can also pass vertically from an infected mother to her child during the process of childbirth. However, chances of any such transmission are minimal, and especially so if there are no visible blisters in and around the vaginal tract at the time of the passage of the baby down the birth canal. The probabilities tend to get higher if gestating mothers gets infected with the virus late into her pregnancy. However, doctors lessen the chances of transmission through the use of antiviral medications to control the symptoms. The best choice available is to opt for preventive measure because this virus simply does not leave a host that it manages to infect. Gaining an insight into the working of the herpies/herpes simplex virus and the ways it spreads is definitely going to be of much help.
Herpies simplex virus
Herpies simplex virus type 1 infection
Who Is At Risk of Developing Herpies Simplex Infections?