Studies are being carried out, preventions for STDs are being known everywhere. Yet, the numbers for genital herpes and those affected by the infection is not going any lower. Numbers are crunching higher and now statistics say that one in every six American individual that are from the age category 14-49 years have herpes. If that does not sound serious enough, studies show that almost half of the African American females are affected by constantly spreading herpes simplex virus 2, or more commonly known as the genital herpes.
Twenty-four million people are affected by genital herpes in the United States of America today. This means the nation’s health care has to spend well over 16 billion dollars on just treating genital herpes alone. Even then, not everyone with herpes is getting the proper treatment or medication for their infection.
According to recent studies, women are twice more likely to be infected than men. This is due to the fact that the skin around the female genital area is more delicate and prone to lacerations. These cuts create passageways for viruses to enter the body, thus making it easier for the female to contract herpes. This also explains why African American women have such a high chance of having HSV 2 in them. In the black community, the background rate of infected people are already quite high, thus making African American females more susceptible to having the genital herpes infection.
Studies also show that people who have just one sex partner had a 4% chance of contracting herpes, whereas someone who had over ten partners had a 27% chance of contracting herpes. This is largely due to the fact that many people are not aware if they have herpes or not. Not all herpes virus carriers show symptoms of the infection, which makes it hard to tell who has herpes and who does not. Thus if a person has more sex partners, they would have a higher chance of getting the genital herpes virus, if they did not have it already.
This Leads to the Next Shocking Fact
Approximately four people out of five are not even aware that they have herpes, as they have not checked out done a blood test, hence they were never diagnosed with the disease. Many do not show symptoms, and lots of people ignore the sores, thinking they might be something minor. This is a big problem. If a person remains untreated and does not take medication for herpes, they have a higher chance of spreading herpes to their sexual partners. If they have more than one sexual partner, they have a chance of spreading it to many people.
To make matters worse, research has revealed that HVS 2 and HIV can be linked together. A person who has genital herpes is three times as likely to catch HIV in them as someone who does not have herpes. They are also more likely to spread the disease to other people as well. Even after the sores of the genital herpes have healed, there is still an increased chance of getting HIV into their body if they come in contact with the virus. Furthermore, someone who has both genital herpes and HIV is likely to spread the HIV virus during the herpes flare-ups, along with the genital herpes virus itself.
What is needed here is the state services to step up and create social awareness. People need to understand the severity of the situation, and understand that unless careful measures and steps are undertaken, there could be a herpes and HIV epidemic. The sad part of the story is that the necessary preventive measures and the testing to see if someone has herpes are neither elaborate, nor expensive. The public needs to be aware of why these steps are important. It is disappointing that public organizations fight it difficult to fund the necessary campaigns to highlight the importance of keeping herpes at bay.
Fortunately, there are campaigns to educate the masses on the importance of safe sex and symptoms of herpes. The public health organizations encourage people with high risk for having herpes to get tested to see if they have contracted herpes or not. This category includes people with multiple sexual partners, bisexual and gay men as well as people who are already infected by HIV.