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new symptoms after Covid booster

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Hi everyone, 

I'm new here, and to having H. I was diagnosed about 8 months ago with GHSV1, and have been taking daily antivirals since. I am still getting outbreaks monthly, but relatively mild. I just got a Covid booster, plus my flu shot (it didn't even occur to me that this might provoke an OB), but here I am. I have a mild genital sore in a different spot from my previous ones, but the most alarming thing is the new symptoms -- terrible back and lower stomach aches, and sporadic tingling in my hands. I've seen a few posts from people who had prolonged negative reactions to the Covid vaccine/booster, but I'm hoping there are some community members who had better experiences. Will these symptoms diminish? Have I undone all the progress my body has made in the past six months? Have I unlocked a worse form of the virus? I know that no one can give concrete answers to these questions but I'm feeling terribly overwhelmed and anxious about this whole thing. Any advice or words of comfort would be much appreciated. Thank you. 

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Hey there @overwhelmedSarah34,

First off, it's absolutely okay to feel overwhelmed when new symptoms pop up, especially when you're already juggling with H. Let's parse through what's going on and see if we can't alleviate some of that anxiety.

It's not uncommon to have an immune response to vaccines (like the Covid booster or the flu shot), which can, unfortunately, sometimes trigger an H outbreak. Your immune system is momentarily busy building up defenses against what was in the vaccines, which can give the herpes virus an opportunity to become active. But here's the reassuring bit: this doesn't mean you're back to square one. Your body is still building up a defense against herpes—it's just been temporarily sidetracked.

The new sore spot, backache, and stomach aches could be related to your immune system's response to the vaccines, and the tingling in your hands might be due to your immune system being in overdrive. It’s not uncommon to experience some strange symptoms as your body reacts to a vaccine. As for "unlocking a worse form of the virus," it doesn't really work that way. You have GHSV-1, and the strain doesn't change or become "worse" because of a vaccine.

These symptoms should diminish as your immune system calms down after reacting to the vaccines. Keep taking your antivirals, stay hydrated, get plenty of rest, and try to manage stress as best you can. Your body has made progress in the past six months, and a vaccine booster doesn’t negate that progress.

It's totally natural to feel anxious when your routine is disrupted by something like this. Maybe try some relaxation techniques, like deep breathing or meditation, and keep an open dialogue with your healthcare provider about your symptoms.

Remember, these new symptoms are likely temporary. They’re your body’s way of saying, "Hey, I’m working hard down here!" And it’s doing exactly what it’s supposed to do. Hang in there, and don't hesitate to reach out to your healthcare provider for reassurance or if your symptoms persist.

Sending you all the best and a big virtual hug!

Keep us posted on your progress, okay?

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Note: This is for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute medical advice or diagnosis.
I'm not a medical professional, so please take this as friendly peer support. 

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Thank you @mr_hopp! I can't express how much it means to me to read your reassuring (and informative) response. I haven't shared my H status with anyone I know (except my partner, who inadvertently transmitted to me), so it's felt incredibly lonely these past few months. My symptoms are diminishing, and I am focusing on managing the current outbreak (continuing my antivirals, and I have just started lysine supplements). I'll post back here in a few months, as I know it can be helpful to others to read not only about someone's experience, but also how it progresses over time. 

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Hi again, @overwhelmedSarah34

I'm glad to hear that your symptoms are diminishing and that you're taking active steps to manage your current outbreak. It's great that you're continuing with your antivirals and have started lysine supplements. These are positive steps in caring for yourself, which is awesome and goes a long way.

Feeling lonely in your journey with herpes is completely understandable, especially if you haven't shared your status with many people. I cried in a parking lot in my mom's lap when I first found out. For a couple of hours. I felt so alone. And ... life moves on. You will expand and grow because of this. So please remember, you're not alone in this. At all. 

It's wonderful that you're considering sharing your progress over time. Your experiences can be super valuable to others who might be going through similar challenges. Sharing your journey can provide comfort and insights to others in the community, making them feel less alone and more hopeful about managing their own situations.

In the meantime, remember to take care of your overall well-being. The basics you always hear the health gurus rattling off: Managing stress, eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and doing activities you enjoy can all help in your general health and potentially lessen the frequency or severity of outbreaks.

If you ever need more support or have questions, don't hesitate to reach out. 

Wishing you continued progress and well-being.

Note: This is for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute medical advice or diagnosis.
I'm not a medical professional, so please take this as friendly peer support. 

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