I recently started dating a guy and got sexually active with him. He performed oral sex on me about a week ago, and like 3 days later I started noticing these bumps on my genital area. Now there are many and they're extremely uncomfortable and painful. I've noticed my lymph nodes are swollen and it burns so badly when I urinate that I try to avoid drinking things just so I don't have to. This guy I'm dating had a cold sore and i remember him telling me that he gets them from time to time. I know that herpes 1 is what causes cold sores, could I have gotten herpes from him? what's the difference between genital herpes 1 and genital herpes 2.
It sounds like herpes from your description, and given the circumstances, it is probable your boyfriend is the source. HSV-1 is carried by most of the adult population orally, however, most doesn't mean all adults have it. In your case, if this is HSV-1, it was acquired through oral sex from your boyfriend's cold sore. Also, since you don't have a history of cold sores or HSV-1, this made you susceptible to an HSV-1 infection. Most, if not all genital HSV-1 infections occur when a person doesn't have a prior HSV-1 oral infection.
There's a difference in transmission, shedding, recurrences, outbreaks in regards to HSV-1 and HSV-2. Genital HSV-1 sheds less than 12 days per year including outbreaks, so out of 365 days, you're contagious for 12 of those days on average. Genital HSV-1 is rarely transmitted through genital to genital sex due to the low shedding rate. Except for the primary outbreak, genital HSV-1 outbreaks tend to be extremely mild, and few and far between. 40% of those who get genital HSV-1 will not have another outbreak; 50% of those who get genital HSV-1 will have 1-2 over a span of a few years; and very few will have recurring outbreaks comparable to HSV-2.
Since your boyfriend has HSV-1 orally, there are really no precautions needed to be taken to prevent transmission. Couples do not ping pong a shared HSV-1 infection to other parts of each others bodies. Your boyfriend has developed an immunity to acquiring HSV-1 in another location (at least extremely resistant). Since your HSV-1 is the same strain as your boyfriend's, the immunity ideology is even more accurate. It's always best to avoid sex when you have an outbreak because open sores are a portal for bacteria, which can delay or worsen the healing process. To conclude, since you have this genitally, you won't get it orally unless you got it from the same exposure, and your boyfriend won't get this genitally since he already has it orally. Only 10% of people make it out of life without acquiring HSV-1, so you were most likely bound to get it some time or another.
Also, if you and the person you're dating break up, it's likely your future partners will have HSV-1 as well and will be immune or at least highly resistant to contracting it genitally.
HSV-1 is carried by most adults and the best study available by NHANES IV is as follows in regards to prevalence:
In your post I didn't see that you've been seen by a physician. If you are in a great deal of pain then you should go get your lesions swabbed for 100% confirmation and get a prescription for Valtrex for 10 days. In almost all cases with genital HSV-1, it is not necessary for you to be on daily antivirals since the outbreaks are few and far between and really mild. The Valtrex will help with the primary outbreak, which will be the worst outbreak you'll ever have since your body has just recently began producing antibodies to fight the virus.
You aren't going to ping pong HSV-1 to his genitals if that's what you're worried about. His HSV-1 status gives him immunity to getting it in another location especially the same strain. It's up to you if you want to tell him or not since he already has HSV-1. It's really a non issue with this guy since he has HSV-1, and isn't at risk for contracting it genitally. With that said, I'm sure his intentions weren't to hurt you, so it's up to you. I can't tell you how to live your life, but most doctors will tell you that you don't have to disclose HSV-1 (regardless of location) to anyone since most of the population has it. I don't really agree with those doctors, but that's just me. As I said, this is your life and your decision, but you aren't going to reinfect him with it genitally.
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