Genital Herpes is a common viral disease that attacks the nerve cells in a human body. While the cause of the virus is not yet established, its effects and spread through the human body is immense. It can easily be passed from one body to another through physical touch. This is because the virus matures and moves from nerve cells to multiply on membranes, usually the skin. While it is a disease and you should be cautious not to contract it, the virus is unique. It operates in phases. In the first one or two outbreaks, the virus is strong and infectious; this is also the period when it comes to the membranes. The virus is characterized by cold sores either around the genitals or around the mouth and lips. The symptoms appear on either of these two body regions depending on the type of virus; HSV-1 or HSV-2.
Mode of Transmission
The fact that herpes attacks the nerve cells, the primary mode of transmission is through physical touch. In fact, it is the only way the disease can transmit. There is little to do with body fluids when it comes to spreading of genital herpes. You do not have to worry about dating or engaging in sex. While you have the responsibility to let your partner know, it is up to you depending on how you’ve managed the disease with respect to exposure of the cold sores.
Sores on the lips and around the mouth can easily transfer the HSV virus to another person if you happen to kiss someone when dating them. In the same way, infections around the genitals can affect your partner if you come in contact, not fluids but the skin. Typically, the sores are small and may not be seen. They do not itch. In fact, you may not know you have them unless you go check. Oral sex can also lead to transmission of the virus because the skins come into contact.
Should you be concerned about blood infections?
No, absolutely not. Unlike most of the other viruses, HSV does not transmit through blood. Some and most of the STDs are passed from one person to another through body fluids that include blood. While you should be careful when coming into contact with another person’s body fluids as a universal health protection tip, HSV is out of the umbrella.
You ask, “Even when I donate blood?” Yes! You can absolutely donate blood if you are infected with HSV. Whether it is oral herpes or genital herpes, you are at liberty to give blood and save another person’s life.
Blood donation: Best for body
Apart from kissing, sexual intercourse, skin contact, and sharing utensils, there is no other way for HSV to move from one body to another. According to the America Red Cross, it is perfect for you to donate blood. The blood is healthy for use in another body. Nevertheless, the organization provides some guidelines and cautions you should consider before donating blood.
It is advisable to go on and donate blood if you have had the virus for a while. This is because, on the first and second outbreak, the virus is usually strong and may find any excuse to get to another body. While it cannot move through blood, it is safe to wait for few more weeks after you have contracted the virus to donate blood. This is actually in your body’s best interest.
Additionally, if you are having any kind of infection or illness, wait till you feel stable before giving out your blood. Again, this is in your best interest. When your body is sickly, the white blood cells and immunity is naturally fighting the bacteria. In fact, medication only boosts your immunity and cells ability to fight diseases. Thus, your blood being center to the transportation of these cells should not be interfered with. At this time of infection, you need as much blood as possible to help in regaining your full health. Giving out blood reduces blood levels, which can significantly affect your healing process.
So, yea you can donate blood when infected with HSV. The infection is on the nerve cells thus freeing your blood of any herpes related infection.