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Under 24 Hours of Herpes Diagnosis


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Hi all, yesterday I found out that I have HSV-1 genital. I got it from my partner of two years who got a cold sore the day after we last had sex. I'm absolutely devastated, but I'm mostly scared. I feel like my entire life has changed. My partner and parents are both very supportive and have been trying to make me feel better, but I'm in the midst of my first outbreak which is causing a lot of pain so it's hard to see the other side of it. My parents hate my partner now, even though it was a total major accident, but I'm also having a hard time trying to understand how this will affect my relationship with him. I'm scared of what it means for our future and I'm scared that I'm going to resent him. He's my first-ever partner, and I feel angry that my first sexual partner has given this to me. I feel gross. I'm in pain. I can't stop crying. I'm a university student in my last semester and have missed two days of classes and know I need to get back on track, but I can't deal with the pain, crying, and shame. I was given Acyclovir for ten days, three times a day. When does it start to work? How can I feel normal again? Can I start suppressive therapy right after this treatment or do I have to wait for another outbreak. I'm so scared. Terrified. Please help. 

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Hey there @indianajones,

First off, I'm sending you a big virtual hug. 🤗 It's totally normal to feel overwhelmed and scared after a herpes diagnosis, especially during your first outbreak. Remember, you're not alone, and it's okay to feel all these emotions.

It's great that you have support from your partner and parents, even though it's tough for them too. As for the tension with your partner, it's natural to have mixed feelings. Give yourself time to process everything. Communication is key here; talk openly with him about how you’re feeling.

About the pain and discomfort, Acyclovir usually starts to work within a few days, helping to reduce the severity and length of the outbreak. Each person's response can vary, but it's often quite effective. If you're still in pain, don't hesitate to talk to your doctor about pain management options.

Regarding suppressive therapy, it's something you can discuss with your doctor after the initial treatment. It’s usually considered if you have frequent outbreaks, but it's always good to get personalized advice based on your specific situation. Daily suppressive antiviral medication can reduce transmission by around 50% and reduce the frequency of outbreaks by up to 80%, so it works very well! For a summarized overview of all relevant data and facts in these free handouts: https://www.herpesopportunity.com/lp/ebook

It's tough to miss classes, but your health is super important. Maybe you can reach out to your professors or university support services to explain your situation and get some accommodations.

Lastly, remember that having herpes doesn't define you or your worth. Many people live with it and have fulfilling lives and relationships. It's just a skin condition, and with time and support, you'll find your way to cope with it. Stay strong, and don't hesitate to seek help when you need it. 💪

Notes:

  • My mother is now in hospice with end-stage cancer, so I am at her house a lot these days helping where I can until she passes. Thank you in advance for understanding if I am not as quick to respond as I normally would be. This is a precious and bittersweet time …
  • This content 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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Of course! In fact, this experience can help you deepen your relationship to yourself and what's true, stripping away the BS and revealing the true you. This process can also help you find a partner who is truly right for you. Herpes itself doesn't do that, of course, but embracing the honesty, vulnerability, humility, and even sexual empowerment (ironically) that a herpes diagnosis can bring can truly be an opportunity. And ultimately it's all about the perspective you choose. Herpes can be a dead end. But it can also be an opportunity. And so much of which way it goes is up to you. And that's empowering.

"Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right." — Henry Ford 

Here's a post about the choosing of perspectives: https://www.herpesopportunity.com/post/herpes-is-not-an-opportunity

Notes:

  • My mother is now in hospice with end-stage cancer, so I am at her house a lot these days helping where I can until she passes. Thank you in advance for understanding if I am not as quick to respond as I normally would be. This is a precious and bittersweet time …
  • This content 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. 

Helpful resources:

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@mr_hopp I have a question about Acyclovir. I started it yesterday around lunch, and today I have noticed that the symptoms seem worse. This is my first outbreak so I'm not sure how it works... Can my symptoms get worse before they get better when starting the 10-day Acyclovir treatment?

 

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Hey @indianajones,

It's normal to feel concerned if symptoms seem worse after starting Acyclovir. Remember, every person's body reacts differently to medication. During the first outbreak, symptoms can intensify before they start improving, even with antiviral treatment. Acyclovir works by reducing the virus's ability to multiply, but it might take a couple of days to notice a significant improvement in symptoms.

If you're experiencing increased discomfort or any worrying symptoms, reach out to your doc. They can give you personalized advice and reassurance based on your health history and current condition.

Also, try to stay as comfortable as possible. Warm baths, loose clothing, and pain relief medication can help manage the discomfort. Most importantly, don't lose hope; many people find that after the initial outbreak, things get much easier to manage after their body and immune system get it under control. This first outbreak is nothing like what the rest of them will be!

Take care and stay strong! Remember, this is a temporary phase, and you'll soon find yourself feeling more like your usual self. 🌟

Notes:

  • My mother is now in hospice with end-stage cancer, so I am at her house a lot these days helping where I can until she passes. Thank you in advance for understanding if I am not as quick to respond as I normally would be. This is a precious and bittersweet time …
  • This content 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. 

Helpful resources:

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What I've read is that the first outbreak for most people is the worst, also that stress leads to new outbreaks. So try to calm down, you have supporting parents and partner, that's a really good thing. Also, I am going to be positive here and say that HSV-1 is something that almost half of the population has in their mouths (which is kind of ambarrasing), you have it in a place where no one can see.
Valacyclovir is a stronger medicine for herpes, but I don't think you need it right now, maybe if you are having more than 4 or 5 outbreaks in a year.

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Hi @mr_hopp - sorry to bother you again! I've been doing a lot of reading the past couple of days, and was wondering about trigger foods. Obviously, if I'm having a flareup, it's best to avoid these foods, but if I'm taking the suppressive medication and not having an outbreak, do I have to remove these entirely? I'm not a big drinker, but occasionally like to have some alcohol! Also, I'm vegetarian so soybeans and nuts are super important to my diet. Can I still have these foods in more moderation when not having a flareup, or would it be best to avoid them altogether regardless of whether I'm having an outbreak or not? Also, I think that my medication is starting to work! I came home from university to spend some time with my family, and am in significantly less pain and really starting to feel more like myself again. Thank you for having such an incredible support system in place for people who are trying to figure this whole thing out. ❤️

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Hey again @indianajones,

No bother at all! It's great to hear your symptoms are improving and you're feeling more like yourself. 😊 About trigger foods, it's really about finding a balance that works for you. While some people with herpes find that certain foods can trigger outbreaks, this isn't the case for everyone.

If you're on suppressive medication and not experiencing outbreaks, you may not need to strictly avoid these foods. Alcohol in moderation and your vegetarian staples like soybeans and nuts can usually be part of your diet without issues. It's all about listening to your body and seeing how it responds. If you notice certain foods seem to coincide with outbreaks, you might consider reducing them. But if you don't notice any impact, there's no need to cut them out completely.

Always remember, each person's experience with herpes can be different, so what works for one person may not be the same for another. It's fantastic that you're taking steps to learn and manage your health. Keep up the positive attitude! 💪

Here's a helpful article on herpes treatment, which includes specifics on lysine/arginine: https://www.herpesopportunity.com/post/herpes-treatment

Take care and stay strong! 🌟

Notes:

  • My mother is now in hospice with end-stage cancer, so I am at her house a lot these days helping where I can until she passes. Thank you in advance for understanding if I am not as quick to respond as I normally would be. This is a precious and bittersweet time …
  • This content 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. 

Helpful resources:

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