Just because you have been diagnosed with herpes, it does not mean that you cannot have a fulfilling sex life. Though your sex life will get slightly more complicated than it ever was before, there is no reason for you to believe that it is the end of the road for you. In fact, millions of people living with herpes have been able to create a normal, fulling functioning life for themselves. If you have a steady partner, or you are just beginning to date, you may have a lot of questions about your sexual life, what is appropriate and safe, and what should be completely avoided. Here’s what you need to know.
Is There Any Safe Period for Sex?
Absolutely yes! If you want to have intimate relations with someone who does or does not have herpes, you can certainly go ahead. However, you must remember that the only safe periods during which you can have sex are those between two consecutive outbreaks. When you have sores on your genitals, it is best if you do not indulge in any sexual activities. This would include vaginal or anal intercourse, as well as giving or receiving oral sex. The sores and scabs are infective, and if you do not take proper precautions, you may pass on the herpes virus to your partner, so have a little patience and you can reward yourself when your outbreak is over.
When Can I Infect My Partner?
The herpes simplex virus is sexually communicable and you may never know when it gets transmitted. Even when you do not have any open sores or an outbreak, you can still infect your partner. Research shows that there is a 4% to 10% chance of transmitting the virus when you are not experiencing an outbreak. When you are experiencing an outbreak, the chances to pass the infection on to your partner are the highest. However, you can very significantly reduce the chances of passing the infection to your partner if you always practice safe sex. Whether you have an outbreak or not, if you always wear a latex condom when you have sex, you can stay away from the spread of the infection, making the incidence of transmission almost negligible.
Condoms are usually considered the most effective way of preventing viral transmissions. It is essential to know all the facts before you can make an informed decision. While condoms can reduce the chances of spread of the infection, their efficiency is only 50%. If you use condoms when you do not have an outbreak, the chances of transmission become 2% to 5%, down by 50% from 4% to 10%. A combination of the viral suppression therapy, using antiviral medications, and condoms, is usually the most effective. Using this combination, the threat of virus transmission is mitigated to a large extent, making it almost safe to have sex at all times. If you want to perform oral sex with a person who has herpes, a dental dam can be helpful. This is a latex based device that prevents skin on skin contact while performing oral sex, and makes oral sex much safer than it would have if you hadn’t used any protection.
Though we have mentioned some of the most important points you need to know to have sex with an infected partner, it is always better and advisable to get a suggestion from a trained consultant or doctor. Have a great time with your partner and be safe at the same time!