Herpes and Cold Sores

Herpes is a common viral infection caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV). There are two main types of herpes viruses: HSV-1 and HSV-2. Herpes is highly contagious and spreads through direct contact with the infected person's skin or bodily fluids. While there is no cure for herpes, our trusted providers at Dermatology Associates & Surgery Center are here to provide you with antiviral medications that can help manage symptoms and reduce the frequency of outbreaks. 

What are the Symptoms of HSV?

  • Cold Sores: Painful, fluid-filled blisters or sores typically occur around the mouth and on the face (HSV-1).
  • Fever Blisters: The blisters may be accompanied by itching, burning, or tingling sensations (HSV-1).
  • Genital Sores: Painful sores and blisters on or around the genitals, anus, and thighs (HSV-2).
  • Flu-like Symptoms: Fever, body aches, and swollen lymph nodes (HSV-2).

What are the Causes of HSV?

  • The Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) is primarily transmitted through direct contact with an infected person or their bodily fluids.
  • HSV-1 can lead to genital herpes through oral-genital contact.
  • HSV-2 is mainly responsible for genital herpes but can also cause oral herpes.

How to Prevent Herpes Simplex Virus

Preventing cold sores, which are often caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus type 1 (HSV-1), can involve antiviral medications, and using sunscreen.

If you have frequent or severe outbreaks, consult with one of our dermatologists for personalized advice and management options.

Herpes and Cold Sores FAQs

Yes, dermatologists can diagnose and provide treatment for cold sores and herpes. They may prescribe antiviral medications to manage symptoms and reduce the frequency of outbreaks.

Antiviral medications are commonly prescribed by dermatologists. These medications can help shorten the duration of outbreaks and alleviate symptoms.

Dermatologists may recommend topical antiviral creams or ointments to reduce pain and discomfort associated with cold sores. However, oral antiviral medications are often more effective in managing the infection.

The duration of treatment varies based on the severity of the outbreak and the specific antiviral medication prescribed. Dermatologists may recommend short-term or episodic treatment, and in some cases, suppressive therapy for recurrent outbreaks.

Dermatologists may offer guidance on preventive measures, including lifestyle modifications and strategies to reduce the risk of outbreaks. In some cases, suppressive therapy with antiviral medications may be recommended to decrease the frequency of recurrences.

Herpes Simplex Virus Treatments

There is no cure for the Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV), but antiviral medications, topical treatments, and pain relievers can help manage symptoms, reduce the frequency of outbreaks, and lower the risk of transmission. Our dermatologists can help prescribe you a treatment plan that will work best for you and your needs.