The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has driven the nation into a state of unrest as more health care workers are stationed away from their departments. The rising cases of genital herpes are a leading problem that needs to be effectively tackled. Many sexual health workers have also been transferred to foreign COVID-19 facilities. This closed down more STD labs, and lesser tests were conducted. In the meantime, there was a high number of undiagnosed people at large. These groups of people go on to spread the infection to unsuspecting people. As STD clinics began to reopen and more herpes tests were conducted, the nation witnessed a dramatic spike in genital herpes cases.
Genital herpes is one of the incurable sexually transmitted diseases that is caused by the herpes simplex virus. Herpes consists of two types – HSV-1, also known as oral herpes, and HSV-2, also called genital herpes. HSV-1, or oral herpes, is generally spread through oral contact with an infected person. They have a chance to cause genital herpes. HSV-2, on the other hand, is spread sexually and affects the genitals and the areas surrounding them. There may or may not be symptoms present in both types.
According to the world data reported by WHO in 2016, the majority of herpes infections are HSV-1 or oral herpes that accounts for nearly 3.7 billion cases of people under 50. The bulk of the infection was recorded in Africa at 88%, while the least infected country is the US with 45%. Whereas about 491 million people in the world, which is 13% of the total population under the age of 50, were living with genital herpes, or HSV-2.
Women are more susceptible to genital herpes than men. They account for 313 million cases, whereas men reported 178 million cases. The disparity in the rate of infection is because it is more common for a male to pass genital herpes to a woman than a female to pass it to a man. The black community has the highest cases of genital herpes, while Asians have the least cases. Thankfully, a lot of online STD testing sites have come up for people who wish to get tested discreetly. It is the responsibility of every sexually active individual to take the first step in getting tested to help the nation control the cases of genital herpes.
The rising cases of genital herpes in the US are a cause for alarm. According to the CDC report, the nation records approximately 572,000 fresh genital herpes cases each year. With more cases detected each day, there is an immediate need to suppress the infection through regular STD tests. It is common in the nation, with every one out of six people between 14 and 49 years infected with genital herpes. Although considered a common infection, the herpes virus stays with you for life once infected. So, always take care and use effective protection and limit your sexual partners to one person. This way, you have a lesser chance of contracting the infection.
While the nation has a total of 11.9% population of people between 14 and 49 with genital herpes cases, there will be more numbers if the cases of genital herpes from HSV-1 are included. So it is imperative for any sexually active person within the said age group to get tested for STDs annually. The infection is more prominent in women than men in the US. The number of genital herpes cases among people between 14 to 49 years recorded in 2015 and 2016 stands at 15.9% for women and 8.2% for men.
Genital herpes is quite common among sexually active people in the US. However, it is highly contagious and can easily be transmitted, especially when a person has an active outbreak of sores and blisters. There is no cure for both types of herpes, but there are effective treatments that are successful in managing the symptoms and probability of transmission. You can always minimize your chance of infection by using protection whenever you have sex. Having a new sex partner or multiple partners can increase your chances of getting infected with herpes.
One reason that might be contributing to the increase in the national cases of genital herpes is the symptomatic nature of the infection. A lot of people do not experience symptoms and feel healthy even when they are infected, making it seem irrelevant to take an STD test. This is why there will be a high number of undetected cases, making the situation even more morbid. If you live an active sexual life, protect yourself and your loved ones by getting routine tests for potential STDs that can significantly decrease the quality of living.
If symptoms do occur, you may be able to spot sore ulcers and blisters in and around the genitals. Patients rate the pain from the symptoms from mild to severe. The risk level of transmission is the same, even if there are symptoms present or not. So, it is imperative to opt for a herpes test to keep your sexual health in the best condition. Having genital herpes can lead to several unwanted health complications and make a person less immune to other infections. It increases the chance of developing HIV that can subsequently lead to AIDS.
Discreet herpes tests are available in many STD testing labs across the nation. It is important not to skip routine genital herpes tests even if you don’t feel unwell. Many of the cases are asymptomatic and cannot be diagnosed without proper tests. The good news is that you don’t have to visit a local lab to book an appointment. Just order the tests online and go for a prompt herpes test in a convenient and confidential manner. Some online STD stores also offer at-home STD testing kits where you can test yourself at home. As responsible citizens, the best thing you can do to control the spike in the rate of STDs is to get tested periodically.