National Herpes Awareness Day is an important event, promoting knowledge and understanding of herpes infections. It is important to break the stigma associated with this virus, as it is estimated that around 12% of people aged 14-49 suffer from genital herpes.
Herpes has been present in nature for millions of years, and in humans throughout its evolutionary development. In 2017, archaeologists discovered a primate believed to be the earliest known carrier of the virus. For thousands of years, humans have been dealing with the symptoms of herpes, such as itching, pain, and swelling. However, in more recent times, the disease has become more stigmatized, with popular culture until the 1960s depicting herpes as a sexually-transmitted disease.
National Herpes Awareness Day was created to combat the false information and myths surrounding herpes. It is important to note that herpes cannot be completely eradicated from the body, and both types of herpes simplex can cause oral and genital infections. People can live with the virus without experiencing any symptoms. Following infection, typical symptoms may include blisters, body pain, and enlarged lymph nodes within two weeks. Additionally, the virus can be passed on through skin contact with an infected area, even if there are no external symptoms present. To prevent infection, it is important to use external and internal condoms, rubber dams, and antiviral therapies.
- In the 1st century AD, the Roman Emperor Tiberius banned kissing due to an outbreak of herpes.
- In 1713, Richard Boulton named the virus Herpes Simplex in his System of Rational and Practical Surgery.
- It was not until the 1960s that scientists identified the two types of herpes (HSV-1 and HSV-2).
How to take part
On this day, it is important to learn as much as you can about herpes. If you have been diagnosed with the virus, talk to your loved ones about it openly – this will help to reduce the stigma associated with herpes. It is also important to remember about prevention and treatment options for the virus. Finally, even with partners you trust, do not forget to use contraceptives to protect against infection.
When is National Herpes Awareness Day celebrated in 2023?
National Herpes Awareness Day is observed on October 13 each year.