herpes symptoms in women

Tag: herpes symptoms in women

Practicing Self-Love

file1551245784283Practicing Self-Love

By Contributing Author Stephanie

As I was beginning to write this blog, I started with looking for articles about self-love. There are so many articles out there telling us how to love ourselves and how to practice as much patience with ourselves as we do with others. Although these are all beautiful and inspiring articles I found that the majority was missing one thing.  What do we do when we feel completely unable to love the person we are today, right at this moment?

This is something I have struggled with my whole life, but when I was diagnosed with herpes it became even more difficult.  As women we are constantly surrounded by messages and images telling us what beautiful is, what the ideal woman acts like, and what our health says about our character as women.  It can be extremely difficult to push those messages aside in order to learn to really love yourself, but I would like to share with you all how I have been able to start to do just that in order to accept myself exactly the way that I am. Over the last year I have made it a priority to really get to know myself.  By that I mean I wanted to know what makes me feel happy, sad, excited, anxious, and what things were really most important to me in my life.  Through my efforts this year I have been able to understand what triggers my emotions, what I really value in my life, and many other things I would have never guessed were a part of who I am a year ago.  

Interestingly enough, understanding myself in these ways has helped me to fall in love with the person that I am. When reflecting on this experience, I like to compare it to falling in love with another person.  As we get to know someone, either intimately or as a friend, we start to accept that person for everything he or she is as well as everything he or she is not.  As we accept a person for all he or she has to offer we can start to really love that person unconditionally.  I believe this is what has happened in my relationship with myself over the last year.  By allowing myself to get to know me I have been able to accept myself for everything that I am, and that has given me the ability to love myself unconditionally, herpes and all. I challenge you all to get to know yourselves on the same intimate level you might imagine you would get to know your life partner on.

If you are struggling with accepting yourself as a woman diagnosed with herpes, understanding deeper traits about yourself will allow you to put less emphasis on such a small aspect of your health and life.  Remember that others will only judge you as much as you judge yourself.   I hope what I have discovered will help you all as you begin the same journey that I started a year ago.  Be your biggest fan, and the journey towards unconditional self-love will be easy.    

Prepare for Cold Season and Avoid Herpes Outbreaks

Avoid Herpes OutbreaksPrepare for Cold Season and Avoid Herpes Outbreaks
By Contributing Author Stephanie

As we enter into the beautiful, yet dangerously contagious, fall season I usually have one thing on my mind: avoiding colds.  After being diagnosed with herpes, this concern weighs on my mind even more.  As most of us know, the herpes virus shows up when our immune system has been compromised.  There can be many causes for this including stress, another virus like the common cold or the flu, or perhaps even lack of sleep.

As my body was still trying to build up immunity to the herpes virus, colds had a substantial effect on my experience with outbreaks.  For the first year of my diagnosis, every time I caught a small cold, an outbreak would follow days after the cold arrived.  Because of this, I have found that it is extremely important for me to take care of myself and keep my immune system strong in order to avoid herpes outbreaks. This blog post will go over some simple, yet key points on how to boost your immune system during the cold season in order to avoid herpes outbreaks. The first step you can take to avoid herpes outbreaks by boosting your immune system is take Omega-3s on a daily basis.

In Dr. Kelly’s book, Live, Love, & Thrive with Herpes, she suggests 2000 mg or more a day. Omega-3s are a great way to boost your immune system as well as balance your hormones, and support cardiovascular and brain health. Zinc Chelate is another easy supplement to use to boost your immunity. Dr. Kelly’s book suggests 50 mg a day.  Not only will taking Zinc on a daily basis support a strong immune system, but it will also promote skin health and tissue repair: two benefits that are amazing for herpes outbreaks. Vitamin D3 is also a great supplement to build immunity.  The suggested dose listed in Dr. Kelly’s book is 5000 IU’s a day.

Women are often deficient in Vitamin D3 and new research is showing that it acts as a hormone, signaling cells to boost immunity. If you are osteoporotic, then D3 is required for you to be able to properly absorb your calcium supplements. Probiotics are another supplement to add to your regimen or diet, not only during cold season, but all the time.  Probiotics help the “good bacteria” in your body to thrive so that they can fight off the “bad bacteria.” You may be able to get all the probiotics you need from your diet.  A few of the foods known to be rich in probiotics are yogurt, sauerkraut, kefir, and kimchi.

One last supplement you should always take to support your health and immune system is a multivitamin.  In Live, Love, & Thrive with Herpes, Dr. Kelly suggests a multivitamin that has at least 750 mg of calcium and 450 mg of magnesium. If you are already taking each of these supplements daily, congratulations!  If you are not, now would be the perfect time to start. Cold season is among us, and supporting our immune systems is extremely important to avoid herpes outbreaks as well as for our overall health and happiness.  I hope these suggestions find you well and that you all have a happy and healthy cold season.

You Probably Have Herpes and Don’t Know It

 

You Probably Have Herpes and Don’t Know It

I came across a great article today written by Vox magazine entitled: Bad news: you probably have herpes and don’t know it.  It is so refreshing to see that there are other people out there trying to educate the public about herpes. Did you know that at least 85% of the population that has genital herpes and doesn’t even know it? This is the same virus that causes chicken pox, cold sores and shingles.  I had a friend of mine ask me, “then, how do we know that they have herpes.” What a great question!

In 2006, the largest study ever on genital herpes was conducted on a cross section of the American population.  The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey asked people who thought that they did not have herpes to participate in the study. Each participant was then tested for herpes using type specific blood tests for HSV-2. When the tests were then analyzed, it was determined that 85% of those participants did in fact test positive for herpes. Then, the group that tested positive for HSV-2 (genital herpes) were then educated on the signs and symptoms of herpes. It was then determined that 70% of those tested were then able to positively identify previous signs and symptoms of herpes.

I have quoted this study time and again in my outreach to educate the public about the high prevalence of genital herpes. Genital herpes is the most common STI and yet no one is comfortable talking about it because of its stigma. This is just one of the many enlightening statistics that reveals the truth about herpes. I also think it is important to reveal that women are 3-4x more likely to contract herpes and at least 1 in 4 women have it. It is our time as women to stand in our power and reveal to the public the reality of this condition.

Remember how people used to openly make fun of HIV and those who suffered from it? Rarely do you hear comedians making such rude comments regarding HIV and AIDs. It is time that those with herpes take a stand and educate the public about this mostly benign infection that does not lead to any other diseases. Wake up America! The next time you poke fun of someone with herpes or make a herpes joke, know that there is a very good chance that you are making fun of your best friend or loved one that just hasn’t had the courage to disclose their status to you.

Want to get educated, empowered and inspired? Check out my Amazon bestseller Live, Love and Thrive with Herpes: A Holistic Guide For Women.  

M.G- Symptoms of Genital Burning and Tingling

After 6 years of celibacy, determined to wait until I get married before having intercourse again, I had sex with my children’s father. I knew he didn’t love me but I used him as a way to relieve stress. After having sex with him I started having flu like symptoms and inflammation around my genitals. The doctors diagnosed me with herpes. I rarely have bumps but I suspect I may have shedding because of a light tingling and genital burning sensation. My ex denies having herpese and giving it to me. He has had multiple sex partners since my diagnoses and moved on with his life. I can’t see myself ever telling a man I have this disease & expecting him to say, ” I love you enough to have it too”. Even though the Dr. says this disease is very common, it doesn’t make me feel any better about taking the chance of telling a potential marriage partner. If I should get rejected I risk the chance of this person telling every one that I have this disease. I’m African American and when it comes to things like STD’s we can be very judgmental and say harsh things. I can’t imagine me telling a black man something like this. It’s been about 7 yrs since my diagnoses. I’ve been doing my best to stay away from foods that will cause inflammation. I mostly experience symptoms before, during or after my period. I need all the support and education about this STD that I can get right now.

Leah- Empowering Other Women with HSV-2

Hi Dr. Kelly, I found out that I had HSV2 a year ago at the age of 35. My boyfriend and I had broken up for 8 months and I had dated a couple of different people. It wasn’t until after I was single again and starting to work things out with my previous boyfriend, that my first outbreak occurred. I had one sore. It was different from anything I had experienced before. I panicked. It went away and then 3 months later another one appeared. I knew at that point something was definitely going on. I immediately scheduled an appointment with my doctor. She took a culture as well as blood and both came back positive. I don’t know who I got it from and I’ve never tried to go down that rabbit hole but have been honest with my current boyfriend since the beginning, but it has been very difficult. I felt ashamed, dirty, regretful, angry, LONELY, and full of fear. I felt like I was a walking contagion and experienced frequent panic attacks and anxiety . I lost a sense of my sexuality. My boyfriend and I are never intimate with each other and I hate being touched. He does not have HSV2 to my knowledge and has been very patient with me, but it has been hard. I have been managing my symptoms with a healthy lifestyle and stress alleviation exercises, energy healing and meditation. My boyfriend is also a chiropractor so I work with his methods of treatment as well and try what ever he recommends. I also went on an extreme detox for 3 months. I went from having back to back breakouts to having one every 2 to 3 months at this point in time and the sores (1 to 2 at most) are very small and heal quickly. I am working towards having even less breakouts, but I’m being patient. I knew as soon as I got herpes that this was the next big event in my life that would push me to become a stronger person. I have learned to have more compassion and understanding towards other people. I have also decided to go in to health coaching and started school this past February. This week I have been processing allot of emotions. It feels as if I’m shedding old layers and old beliefs and habits. It is a process of letting go. I feel like I am being pulled to help women with herpes in my future practice as a health coach but the first step I feel I must take is to share my story and not hide. I want to be a role model and a support to women and you are my inspiration Dr Kelly, as well as all the other women who have stepped out of the darkness. When women leave their doctor’s office with the prescription in hand, I want to be there to pick them up and hold their hand the rest of the way and show them the way to true health and healing. I want to help them heal and redefine their lives. If you are a woman who was recently diagnosed, know that it is normal to feel all that you are feeling and let yourself experience those emotions so you can release them. Do not hold them inside. In time, these feelings will let up and you will start to move forward and upward. The best thing I did was join support groups like this and in my community. I felt less lonely. Herpes has made me redefine my life and notice what is really important. I am still working through the emotions of having herpes. I am not sure if the relationship I’m in will last. I may step away from it and take some time to myself to heal some more, we’ll see. I’m still working to regain my sexuality and am doing allot of self-educating. I believe I will find strength through knowledge. Finding Pink Tent has made me very happy and I can’t wait to meet the women in this group. Other than that I have so much that I am grateful for and feel truly blessed.

Diagnosed With HSV-1 Yesterday

I was diagnosed with HSV-1 yesterday. I was home sick with the flu when I got the call. I am completely heartbroken and overwhelmed. I contracted herpes from my husband. We engaged in oral sexual intercourse about 2 weeks ago and a few days later he had an HSV-1 outbreak on his lip. I started getting intensely itchy in my vaginal area and had some other symptoms that were typical of yeast infection (I had no blisters at this time) so I treated for that. The topical cream caused intense burning externally so I discontinued use of the cream. I continued using the ovules.

A few days later I was experiencing pain while urinating so I “took a look” and noticed what appeared to be a contact dermatitis where I had applied the cream. There was also a small clump of three vesicles on one side of my labia majora. At this time I made a doctor’s appointment.I went to the doctor and was told what I had suspected, the two long lesions on either labia majora were a contact dermatitis from the cream but she was concerned about the cluster of lesions on the one side. I was swabbed and the swab was sent for testing. I was told that I would be notified by the nurse ONLY if the results came back as positive. When I saw the number come up on the screen my heart sank to the floor.

I knew what I was about to be told.I do not know where to go from here. I feel dirty. I feel tainted. I feel alone. My husband is having a hard time dealing with the fact that he gave me something that will never go away. He has withdrawn from me which makes me feel even dirtier and more alone. This diagnosis has SERIOUSLY affected my relationship with my husband and my own psyche. I feel that when people look at me, they “know.” It is a terribly lonely feeling. I am in great need of support.I feel angry at my husband. I feel that he should have known that he had an outbreak coming and that he should have stayed away.

I feel like I have been betrayed by the person I am supposed to trust most in the world.I do not know how to manage symptoms. Before I went to the doctor, I was applying Docosanol topical cream and I suppose that seemed to help. I need to know what I can do to manage symptoms.I am so worried that this diagnosis will take away my dream of having a large family. I have a gorgeous six month old daughter. I looked at her yesterday after I hung up the phone and burst into tears because I am very afraid that I will be one of the few people that has SEVERE complications with herpes. I have always only wanted to be a stay at home wife and mother. The dream was already partially shattered- I had to return to work because of my husband’s debt problems. I was counting on having more children and now I am so terrified that I will NEVER be able to realize my dream.I need help.Please.I do not know where to go from here.