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General characteristics

General characteristics

For herpes around the mouth see cold sores.

Genital herpes is assumed to be most commonly caused by the herpes simplex type 2 virus (type 1 being the cold sore virus which can also cause genital herpes). It too affects the skin but this time around the genital area and anus and is considered infectious, whether the skin lesions are visible or not. It can also affect the thighs, buttocks and cervix (in women). The virus can remain dormant in the system and may recur in the future though outbreaks tend to get less frequent over time and produce less symptoms.

Symptoms may initially include itching, tingling, redness, soreness, rash, blisters that burst in time to form ulcers, ulcers then take a few weeks to heal, a flu like illness with the first outbreak, pains down the legs, painful urination and high temperature. It is possible to develop herpes without experiencing any notable symptoms.

A connection has been made with herpes infection and increased likelihood of cervical cancer so ensure you have regular smear tests.

Healing objectives are to relieve any symptoms and to strengthen the immunity/vitality to prevent future outbreaks.

Diet and lifestyle

Diet and lifestyle

Base your diet on a wide variety of good quality organic fresh fruit, vegetables, natural yoghurt, grains, seeds, nuts, sprouted seeds and plenty of water and herb teas.

Eat plenty of broccoli and cabbage type plants like brussels sprouts, cauliflower and kale, as they almost entirely inhibit the activity of the herpes virus so include plenty each day. You could make a herpes busting juice from them and drink a glass daily.

Include plenty of foods that are rich in zinc, vitamin C,vitamin E and vitamin B12. See 'vitamins' and 'minerals' in the 'natural healing' section of this site for ideas on foods containing these nutrients.

A muesli containing oats will provide many nutrients especially B vitamins which are useful to the nervous system.

Include lots of fresh garlic in your cooking for its anti-viral properties.

The amino acid lysine is showing beneficial results for cold sore healing and prevention so include foods rich in lysine in the diet. These include red meat and poultry, cheeses, buttermilk, eggs, seaweeds, cod, sardines, nuts and legumes (peas and beans).

Eat plenty of broccoli and cabbage type plants like brussels sprouts, cauliflower and kale, as they almost entirely inhibit the activity of the herpes virus so include plenty each day. You could make a herpes busting juice from them and drink a glass daily.

Useful herbs

Useful herbs

A useful formula for boosting the immune system and raising vitality could contain tinctures of st johns wort, echinacea, elderberry, siberian ginseng, and astragalus tinctures and half a part (25ml for example) of liqourice root tincture and take a teaspoon in water up to 3 times daily at the first sign of a cold sore. Add 10 drops of black walnut hull tincture and 5 drops of thuja tincture to each prepared dose for a deep cleansing, anti-viral action. This will support and strengthen your immune system and speed up the healing process.

Sweet wormwood (Artemesia annua) is a very effective anti-viral against herpes outbreaks (genital and otherwise).

Selfheal (Prunella vulgaris) tea should be drunk daily as it shows drastic ability to inhibit the activity of all herpes strains. Use 1 teaspoon per cup and drink 2 cups daily.

Chamomile flowers contain anti-viral properties useful against herpes.

Lemon balm tea is both anti-viral and anti-depressant, it is also tasty and refreshing. , so drink at least 3 cups daily. Lemon balm speeds up the healing and resolution of outbreaks. You can also make a topical application to apply to the genital area. Make a strong tea of the dried or fresh leaves (a tablespoon of dried or 2 tablespoons of the chopped fresh herb), leave to brew for 20 minutes. Apply the tea as a wash or compress or mix a teaspoonful of the tea with just enough slippery elm powder (or something similar like arrowroot) to make a paste and apply to the sores and leave on for as long as possible. Repeat with fresh applications every few hours. Drink a cup of the tea daily while you have an active outbreak to speed up healing and help prevent any new blisters appearing.

Apply fresh aloe vera gel to the area to relieve irritation and speed healing.

When skin bumps are bursting, speed up healing by applying astringent herbs such as cranesbill, tormentil, oak bark (as tea washes) and pomegranate juice or rind directly onto the skin. Warm slippery elm poultices will help soothe and heal.

Fenugreek seed tea is a good source of lysine so drink a cup daily during an outbreak of herpes. You can also add a pinch of fenugreek seeds to your herb teas from time to time for a preventative effect.

If the lymph nodes around the groin become swollen make a tea using a teaspoon each of chickweed and mullein flowers dried herbs and drink 3 cups daily.

Natural healing

Natural healing

Good old fashioned zinc and castor oil cream or ointment has been reliable in alleviating painful skin sores for many sufferers.
Don't have sex during or soon after an outbreak or if you suspect one is imminent. It sounds obvious but you'd be surprised!
Add a few drops of propolis tincture to drinks to benefit from its potent antiviral properties.
Add a few drops each of the essential oils of tea tree, thyme and oregano to a daily bath to gain from their anti-viral properties.

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