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Stress, lack of sleep, or shaving that's causing outbreaks?

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I have recently had what I think is my 3rd outbreak in the past 3 months. I relatively keep very active, eat well, and get plenty of sleep, but this past week I was on a vacation, and it was a bit stressful in a car with kids as well as getting less than adequate sleep. The other day, I shaved down there, but what really causes outbreaks? Does shaving increase the likelihood of a recurrence? How often do most of anyone with HSV-2 on average get a year? Does anyone have trouble feeling their prodromal symptoms as well?


I've read it varies with people, but I often get a little sad whenever I have a recurrence. Is that normal? Sorry I know that's a lot of questions for one post, but I'm still really new and figuring this all out. I haven't even had more than one disclosure yet lol.

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To answer your question, yes to all of the above. Any sort of irritation around that area or stress to your immune system can be a trigger for an outbreak, especially if it's early on in your diagnosis (the longer you have herpes, the more antibodies you build up and the less outbreaks you'll have).

And yes, it's absolutely normal to have a recurrence of that shame monster whenever you have a recurrence of herpes since it tends to dredge up all those yucky feels you thought you'd successfully repressed. 😂 But here's the trick ... Use these recurrences as opportunities to love yourself even more through it instead of sending yourself deeper into a shame spiral of self-flagellation. It takes retraining your muscle memory of how you might normally treat yourself, but over time it becomes easier and easier to go down the self-compassion path.

Here's another way to look at it: An outbreak can be seen as your body's signal, asking you to take care of it. So use outbreaks as a time to go deeper into self-compassion and self-love, because those are the times you need it most.

Here's a post that might help put it more in perspective: https://www.herpesopportunity.com/post/radical-view-on-self-love 

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I'm taking daily valtrex, but do you have any tips on preventing an outbreak from occurring when you're shaving down there? It just feels weird to me having a lot of hair in the private region.

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