What is Herpes?

HSV or the herpes simplex virus is a common infection causing genital herpes. The surrounding genital area including the genitals can be covered by painful blisters when infected by HSV.

HSV is always referred as an STI or sexually transmitted infection as it is passed through sexual intercourse.

Any moist lining or mucous lining such as the mouth can be affected by HSV. The growth of cold sores in the mouth could be caused by HSV.

Getting infected with genital herpes will give you a long-term or chronic health condition. The virus lies dormant in your body which could become active anytime. For the first two years after infection, recurrence average will be around four to five times. In time, outbreaks will be less often and severe.

The herpes simplex virus has two types which are type 1 and type 2. All types are highly infectious which can be transmitted easily to other people by direct contact.

Having sexual relations through oral, vaginal or anal with an infected person will infect you with genital herpes. An infected person will always be capable of passing the infection even if he or she does not show any signs and symptoms.

Most infected people have no idea that they have acquired the infection because of the absence of initial symptoms or the few symptoms experienced. A genital herpes outbreak can happen when something triggers and activates the virus.

HSV is a common infection particularly in sexually active people ages 20-24 years old.

Genital herpes has no cure. Retroviral drugs can alleviate the symptoms, but it cannot cure the disease. Because of this, it is very important that genital herpes should be prevented from spreading by using a condom to all engaged sexual activity, and, if under treatment, to abstain from sex until the symptoms have been alleviated.

Acquiring the infection during pregnancy could give serious health complications depending on factors such as having the infection before getting pregnant, or getting it for the first time while being pregnant.

The health risk to a baby is very low if you already have genital herpes before getting pregnant. It is due to the protective antibodies that have been passed to the baby during the few months of pregnancy. These protective antibodies are proteins that can fight off an infection which could protect the baby during and after birth.

The baby is not exposed to high risk even when genital herpes episodes recurred during your entire pregnancy. However, when this is happening, antiviral medication should be taken such as acyclovir from 36 weeks of pregnancy up to the time of birth to reduce the symptoms.

If infected with genital herpes for the first time from the first trimester to 26 weeks of pregnancy, there is a high risk of losing the pregnancy. If the pregnancy goes through a full term, passing the virus to the baby is very possible.

The way to prevent passing on the virus to the baby is to take antiviral medication continuously until birth.

Hepatitis: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

An inflammation or swelling of the liver is a medical condition called hepatitis.


Hepatitis can be developed by:

  • Medication overuse such as over dosage intake of acetaminophen or other drugs
  • Liver being attacked by the immune cells in the body
  • Liver damage from poison or alcohol
  • Infections from other viruses such as hepatitis C, A, or B, parasites or bacteria

Inherited disorders such as hemochromatosis, which is a condition that holds too much iron in the body or cystic fibrosis, can also cause liver disease. Another disorder that can lead to liver disease is Wilson’s disease wherein too much copper is retained in the body.


Hepatitis may begin and heal quickly. It may also turn into a chronic condition that will stay with you forever. Liver cancer, liver damage, and liver failure are some of the cases that are caused by hepatitis.

Usually, it is hepatitis A that has a shorter term and does not develop into chronic liver conditions. However, it should be noted that if you have existing illnesses including the ones that may have caused some damage to the liver, acquiring hepatitis may give additional severe health conditions.

Some of the symptoms of hepatitis may include:

  • Weight loss
  • Bloating or pain in the abdominal area
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Clay-colored or pale stools and dark urine
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Low fever
  • Jaundice
  • Itching

When first infected with hepatitis B or C, you may not show any symptoms. It will still later lead to liver failure. Tests should always be done often if you have risks conditions for these two types of hepatitis.

Tests and examinations

A physical exam is needed to look for:

  • Jaundice or yellowing of the skin
  • Tender and enlarged liver
  • Ascites or fluid in the abdomen

Lab tests to monitor and diagnose the condition of the liver may include:

  • If fluid is present in the abdomen, a paracentesis is needed
  • Ultrasound of the abdominal area
  • Liver biopsy to check for damages in the liver
  • Autoimmune blood markers
  • Liver function tests
  • Diagnostic tests for Hepatitis A, B, or C


Options in a treatment program will be discussed with you by your health provider. Treatments will be varied, depending on the causes that led to the liver disease. If you have lost weight, a high-calorie diet may be recommended.


  • Liver cancer
  • Cirrhosis, which is permanent liver damage
  • Liver failure

Contacting a medical professional

Help must be immediately sought if you have these symptoms:

  • Delirious and confused
  • Have too much of medicines such as acetaminophen and showing symptoms for the overdose.
  • Have tarry or bloody stools
  • Vomit blood

The doctor also needs to be called if:

  • You have just come from a travel from Central America, Asia, South America, and Africa and now feel sick
  • You think you have been exposed to hepatitis A, B or C as you are showing the symptoms

Excessive vomiting cannot keep food in your stomach.

What You Should Know About Hepatitis?

Inflammation of the liver is called hepatitis which is caused by viruses that can develop to serious health conditions. The virus comes from different types such as A, B, C, D, E, and G.

The viral hepatitis types that are most common are hepatitis A, B, and C. They are all infectious.

Hepatitis A

Humans are the only source of Hepatitis A virus and have the only reservoir for the infection. Infection happens through contact with feces of an individual infected with the virus either directly such as sexual intercourse or person to person, or indirectly through water and food intake coming from sources contaminated with the virus. The infection could also be transferred from blood products. Most people recover from the infection on their own. There is no medication for hepatitis A. Vaccination is the only preventive weapon against it.

Hepatitis B


  • Sharing of personal things with an infected person such as drug paraphernalia, toothbrushes, needles, razors, and nail clippers.
  • Contact with contaminated organs and blood.
  • Infected mother to her baby during childbirth.


  • Many infected people, even those with serious cases do not show any symptoms.
  • Jaundice
  • Fatigue
  • Abdominal pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dark urine

Preventive measures:

  • Avoid sharing of personal items that might have blood contamination such as nail clippers, toothbrushes, needles, and razors.
  • Hepatitis B vaccine
  • Safe sex practices

Hepatitis C


  • Infection can be transmitted through sharing personal things with an infected individual such as razors, needles, toothbrushes, and nail clippers.
  • Direct contact with blood products and blood.
  • Can be passed through sexual contact although it is not very common
  • Passed by an infected mother to baby during childbirth.


  • Fatigue
  • Most cases of Hepatitis C do not show any symptoms
  • Dark urine
  • Could sometimes have jaundice
  • Abdominal pain
  • Feelings of uneasiness
  • Loss of appetite

Preventive measures:

Personal items that can possibly acquire contaminated blood should never be shared with an infected person such as needles, toothbrushes, nail clippers, and razors.

Hepatitis D


  • Although found mostly in adults, there is still a possibility of an infected mother passing on the infection to the baby during childbirth
  • Almost always found in developing countries
  • Most often passed through contaminated food or water
  • Passed through fecal-oral route where an infected stool is ingested through food prepared from unwashed hands


  • 90% of Hepatitis E infected children do not show any symptoms
  • Jaundice
  • Dark urine
  • Feelings of uneasiness
  • Stomach pain
  • Loss of appetite

Preventive measures:

  • Be extra vigilant when on a travel to developing countries
  • Hands should be washed properly before preparing food or before and after eating

Hepatitis G


No symptoms have been reported for this infection.


  • Sexual intercourse can pass the infection
  • Often teams up with other infectious diseases such as HIV, hepatitis C, and hepatitis B
  • May be passed from an infected mother to baby during birth
  • Sharing of personal things that gets contaminated with the virus
  • Passed through infected blood products and blood

Preventive measures:

  • Safe sex practices

Do not share personal things.

Symptoms of Gonorrhea

One of the most common sexually transmitted diseases that can be transmitted during an unprotected sexual activity is gonorrhea. It is often referred to as ‘the clap’ or ‘the drip’ and the highest infected groups are the following:

  • Habitual drug users
  • Young adults and adolescents
  • African Americans
  • Often Poor people living in the southern states or urban areas

The bacteria Neisseria gonorrhoeae causes gonorrhea through anal, vaginal or oral sexual relations which are the means of transference.

  • During vaginal childbirth, a mother infected with gonorrhea may pass the infection to her newborn.
  • There is a 20% risk of men getting infected when they engage in sexual relations with an infected woman.
  • A woman stands a high 50% risk of infection when she has sexual intercourse with an infected man.


In women, it could take as long as three weeks before they show symptoms but the usual route is around 2 to 10 days.


It should be noted that women have a small percentage of showing symptoms which could unwittingly make them spread the infection especially when she is sexually active with multiple partners. Symptoms when they occur may include:

  • Bleeding between periods
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease or PID is a serious health risk that causes infertility to women
  • Irritation and infection of the vagina
  • Irritation and infection of the cervix
  • Burning and itching of the vagina
  • Thick green or yellow colored discharges in the vagina
  • Painful sex
  • Pain or burning sensation during urination


  • Most of the time, there will be thick, yellow colored discharges from the penis
  • Inflammation of infection of the prostate gland
  • Burning or pain sensation when urinating
  • Infection or inflammation of the testicles



The mucous membranes of the eyes become irritated which could cause blindness if left untreated.

Rectal and oral symptoms

  • Discharges or rectal pain is a sign that infection is in the anal area where sexual intercourse could have been done.
  • A Sore throat can be an effect of a gonococcal infection which is caused by the gonorrhea infection transmitted during oral sex.

Medical help

As soon as you suspect that you have been infected with gonorrhea, set an appointment with your health care provider. It will even be more important should you show the following symptoms:

  • Had sexual relations with a person infected with gonorrhea
  • Fever
  • Sore throat
  • Pus-like discharges from the vagina or penis
  • Pain and discharges from the anus
  • Painful urination
  • Appearance of a dark centered rash
  • Fatigue

It should be noted that an early onset of gonorrhea that is tested and treated stand a better chance of quick recovery. It is recommended that sexually active people with multiple sex partners get a yearly STD test in order to rule out STDs that do not show any symptoms like gonorrhea. This will not only lead to prevent serious health conditions but also help contain the spread of infection.

Know More About Gonorrhea

Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease caused by the bacteria Neisseria gonorrhoeae. Once transmitted it quickly grows in the moist and warm areas of the body including:

  • Reproductive organs of women which include the uterus, fallopian tubes, and cervix
  • The urethra which is the tube that drains the urinary bladder of urine
  • Anus
  • Eyes
  • Vagina
  • Penis
  • Throat

Unprotected sex through the vagina, mouth, and anus transmit gonorrhea. People who have the greatest risk of infection are those who do not use a condom and have multiple sex partners. Protection against the infection can best be achieved with the use of a condom in every sexual activity, or abstinence or a monogamous relationship with an uninfected partner.

Signs and symptoms


It usually takes around two to five days after infection for symptoms to happen. However, there are some men who may never show symptoms while it may take several weeks for some men to develop symptoms.

For women, the developed symptoms may be related to other infections or milder in a form. Even without the presence of symptoms, the infected person is still highly contagious. This symptom-free occurrence is the cause of widespread infection because the infected people are unaware of the infection.

The first symptom to be noticed in men is often a painful or burning sensation when urinating. It may also include:

  • Recurring sore throat
  • Frequency of urination
  • Pain or swelling in the testicles
  • Green, white or yellow colored pus-like discharges from the penis
  • Redness or swelling at the penis’ opening

Gonorrhea symptoms in women may be tricky as it could be similar to bacterial or vaginal yeast infections. Symptoms may have the following:

  • Fever
  • Foul smelling discharges from the vagina
  • Pain in the lower abdominal area
  • Burning or painful urination
  • Painful sexual intercourse
  • Frequency of urination
  • Sore throat

If gonorrhea is left untreated, the infection may well spread to the bloodstream where the body may develop joint pains, rashes, and fever.


There are several ways a healthcare professional can diagnose gonorrhea. Vaginal or penis discharges will be taken as a specimen and exposed to a stain. The reaction of the cells to the stain would probably be gonorrhea. It is a quick and easy test but could not be termed reliable.

Another way is to take samples of vaginal and penile discharges and incubating it for a couple of days inside a special dish. A growth of gonorrhea bacteria will be the way to determine the infection.

It will take three days before final results can be determined. Some of the samples that can be taken from an infected person may include fluid from the joints, the throat, blood, vagina, anus or tip of the penis. A needle is inserted with the extraction of a small amount of specimen if joint fluid or blood is needed as samples.


Gonorrhea can mostly be cured through a regimen of modern antibiotics. However, there has been a development of new strains of gonorrhea that are resistant to common antibiotics. Extensive treatment is needed that may use antibiotic combinations.

Treatment for Chlamydia

One of the United States’ very common sexually transmitted diseases is Chlamydia. Since it is mostly asymptomatic, the infection gets passed to other partners as the infected person does not know that he or she is infected.

Being infected with Chlamydia would not be easy to say as it is mostly asymptomatic. If symptoms do happen it will only be noticed after a week or three weeks following infection and they may include:

Symptoms in women

  • Pain during urination
  • Odorous with abnormal amounts of vaginal discharges
  • Burning or itching around or in the vagina
  • Bleeding between menstrual periods
  • Painful sexual intercourse
  • Fever with abdominal pain
  • Painful cramps during menstruation


Symptoms in Men

  • Swelling and pain around the testicles
  • Cloudy or clear discharges from the penis’ tip
  • Itching and burning surrounding the penis’ opening
  • Pain during urination

Your doctor will use different tests to diagnose a Chlamydia infection. A swab will be used to take a sample from the cervix in women or urethra in men which will then be sent to be analyzed in the laboratory. Urine samples to see the presence of the Chlamydia bacteria can also be another form of test.


If tests are positive for Chlamydia oral antibiotics such as azithromycin or doxycycline will be prescribed by your doctor. He or she will also advise that the way to stop or contain re-infection is for your partner(s) to submit to an STD test and treatment.

The infection usually clears up after a week or two of treatment. Even if you feel better, the antibiotic therapy that was prescribed should be completed in order to eliminate Chlamydia from your system.

Severe infections of Chlamydia that usually occurs in women would need hospitalization. The treatment that will be done while confined in the hospital will be a combination of medicines for pain and antibiotics given intravenously.

Infected people must be re-tested after the prescribed antibiotic treatment has been consumed. This is to ensure that the infection has been cured. This is very important especially when you are not sure if your partner(s) underwent testing and treatment. The best way to avoid re-infection is to refrain from any sexual activity until you are sure that you and your partner are free of the disease.

Here are ways to remove the risk of being infected by Chlamydia:

  • Avoid sex and see your doctor if you feel that you have contracted Chlamydia.
  • Practice safe sex by using condoms every single time you have a sexual activity.
  • Practice abstinence from sex, or only have sexual relations with one uninfected partner.
  • Learn not to use multiple partners.

Discharges, an unusual rash or sore, or pain during urination should always be a signal to stop all sexual activity and to see your doctor as soon as possible. You have the responsibility of informing your partner(s) if you are tested positive for a Chlamydia infection. This will give them a chance to submit to a test and treatment.

Everything You Need To Know About Chlamydia

The bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis causes Chlamydia which is one of the most common sexually transmitted that affects people of all ages, particularly individuals aged below 25 years. It is also known as the ‘silent infection’ because most of the time people are unaware that they are infected.

A person can get infected by Chlamydia by having anal or vaginal sex with an infected individual.




Most women are unaware that they have been infected with Chlamydia because of the absence of signs or symptoms. It can cause PID or pelvic inflammation disease once the infection has reached the neck of the cervix and spread to the fallopian tubes and uterus. It could also lead to infertility, chronic pelvic pain, and ectopic pregnancy. An infected mother can pass the infection to her baby during birth which could cause eye or lung infections. The rectum can be infected which may cause bleeding, rectal pain or discharges.

If symptoms show, they could include:

  • Pain in the lower abdominal area
  • Unusual discharges from the vagina
  • Bleeding after sex or spotting or bleeding between periods
  • Pain or burning sensation during urination
  • Painful sexual intercourse


Chlamydia would be asymptomatic or show no symptoms in men. It can cause pain when the tube of the penis or urethra is infected which could reach the epididymis. The rectum can be infected which may cause bleeding, rectal pain or discharges.

If symptoms show, they can include:

  • Sore and swollen testicles
  • Discharges from the penis
  • Burning pain during urination


Chlamydia could easily be diagnosed with painless tests that normally use urine. A cotton swab test would be another alternative where specimens can be taken from the penis, vagina, anus or cervix and sent to the laboratory for analysis.


Having unprotected anal or vaginal sex with an infected person could get you infected with Chlamydia. Safe sex practices should always be done in every sexual activity such as using a condom or a dam which is made of thin latex that is fitted over the anus or vagina.

Many people are unaware they have the infection since Chlamydia does not often show signs and symptoms. Looking at the outward appearance of a person may not show that he or she is infected with Chlamydia even when they look healthy.

A new sex partner who may have an earlier partner infected with Chlamydia poses a high risk through unprotected sexual activity. A long-term partner could also infect you if he or she had unprotected sex with other infected people.


It is highly recommended that people under 25 years old and are sexually active should have annual check-ups for Chlamydia or other possible STDs. Chlamydia can infect any sexually active person at any age, more so when sex is unprotected and involves multiple partners.


A single dose of antibiotics can treat Chlamydia if it is detected early. A longer course of antibiotic treatment has to be done when Chlamydia complications have been developed such as PID or pelvic inflammatory disease.

If you are infected with Chlamydia, your sexual partner has to know so she or he can be tested and treated as they may have acquired the infection from you and could re-infect you after you have been treated.

Chlamydia Infection: Symptoms, Treatment and Prevention

Chlamydia is a very common sexually transmitted disease, especially in sexually active young adults and teenagers.


Most infected people do not show any symptoms and are even unaware they have it. But if symptoms show, it may include:

Swelling and pain in the testicles for men

Burning or pain when urinating

In women, lower abdominal pain, bleeding between menstrual periods, during or after sex bleeding

Unusual discharges from the rectum, vagina or penis

If you think that you have Chlamydia based on the symptoms listed above, visit the nearest STD testing centers to be tested and treated. The earlier you get the treatment, the lesser risk for serious health conditions that could last a lifetime.


Chlamydia is caused by a bacterium that is transmitted through sexual intercourse or contact with genital fluids such as vaginal fluid or semen that is infected.

You can get infected with Chlamydia by:

Getting infected vaginal fluid or semen in your eye

Unprotected oral, vaginal, and anal sex

Genitals coming in contact with an infected person’s genitals even when there is no ejaculation, penetration or orgasm

sex toys sharing that have not been covered with a new condom or washed after every use

infected mother to her newborn during birth

Chlamydia cannot be transmitted by utensil sharing, hugging and kissing, or sharing toilet seats, baths, swimming pools, and towels.

Serious health complications

Although Chlamydia can be easily treated with antibiotics, it can cause serious health conditions if left untreated.

If no treatment is done, other body parts can be infected leading to serious health problems such as reactive arthritis, PID or pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility, and inflammation of the testicles or epididymo-orchitis.

These are the reasons why a test and treatment as early as possible is very important if you suspect that you have been infected with Chlamydia.


Antibiotics can easily treat Chlamydia. It may either be a long course of capsules that needs to be taken for a week or a single dose oral or injectable form.

Sex should be avoided until you or your partner is done with the treatments. If a single dose treatment has been applied, sex should still be avoided for a week.

It is important that your sexual partners and current partner that you’ve had sexual relations within the past six months could also be tested and treated to stop the infection from spreading.

The health centers, testing centers or your health care provider can help you get in touch with your sexual partners. The clinics or health centers can either send them a letter or speak to them about the need to be tested and treated. The letter will not state your name to protect your privacy.


A sexually active individual will most likely be infected with Chlamydia. The risk will be higher for those who do not use protective barriers such as a condom during every sexual activity or having multiple partners.

Get tested and treated as soon as you suspect that you have been infected with Chlamydia or any other STD.

Understanding Gonorrhea

Gonorrhea is one of the most common of the sexually transmitted diseases and around the world about 5,000,000 men and women are infected annually with it. It is still a misunderstood STD that needs more awareness since a lot of people infect other people for they never knew they had it. The reason would be the almost negligible symptoms during the early onset of the disease. However, if you are sexually active with multiple partners, STD testing should always be a requirement.

Symptoms and signs in Men

Most men do not show any symptoms at all but for some who did, these are the common ones:

o   While urinating, a burning sensation is experienced.

o   The penis gives a green or yellow discharge.

Symptoms and Signs in Women

Women with gonorrhea may experience this:

o   Copious vaginal discharges

o   Spotting or irregular menstruation

o   Painful urination

It is a fact that many women seldom experience symptoms even when they are already infected with gonorrhea. Most of the time the symptoms discussed could also mean a urinary tract infection. However, untreated gonorrhea could cause women lifelong and serious health problems such as pelvic inflammatory disease or PID.

Symptoms of Rectal Gonorrhea

Both men and women have similar symptoms when they are infected with rectal gonorrhea and they are:

o   Pain during bowel movement

o   Discharges and itchiness in the rectum

o   Bleeding from the rectum


Gonorrhea if left untreated will bring lifelong diseases even when it has been cured. For women, it can be PID which is one of the main causes for infertility. It also gives a higher risk for ectopic pregnancy and abscesses with pain in the pelvic area. If gonorrhea is still present in a pregnant woman, there is a bigger chance of passing it to the baby which could cause serious blood infections, blindness, and infections in the joints. For the men, epididymitis can be a very painful experience and infertility is also another of the causes of untreated gonorrhea. The disease could reach the joints and could be debilitating.

Gonorrhea Testing

Gonorrhea can be spread easily since people infected with it are not even aware that they have it. It stands to reason that an STD test should be made a part of your health care especially when you have an active sexual life with multiple partners. Not having any symptom should not be the basis for not undergoing an STD screening or tests. The debilitating effect of gonorrhea that has remained unchecked has lifelong repercussions of pain that could pave the way for serious health problems.

Still after all that has been said and done, nothing could beat prevention or safe sex practices. Prevention may not mean abstinence; it would just mean a monogamous relationship with a lifetime partner that will be the safest relationship to be in right now! If monogamy is not your scene, then safe sex should always be practiced. These barriers are the only protection that you separate you from a healthy person to becoming a sickly one.

The Common Causes Of Yeast Infection

Candidiasis is another name for yeast infection and could be prominently found in the vaginal area. It is due to the formation of certain bacteria in the vagina that can also affect the men, especially the uncircumcised ones, by means of sexual relations. Women, at one time or another, have contracted this infection, but no serious problems are caused by them.

There are varied reasons for getting a yeast infection, but unprotected sex is the main issue. Candida albicans, the major ingredient of a yeast infection can be caused from the unprotected sex between partners which occurs in the mouth, vagina, and the anus.

Some causes of yeast infection:

·         Condoms containing nonoxynol-9, a lubricant has also been shown to cause yeast infection but a great protection against HIV virus.

·         Diet can be a culprit especially when the food has high yeast content.

·         Hormonal imbalances caused by fluctuations in the immune system could give way to yeast infections.

·         Long usage of antibiotics used to combat other infections can cause yeast infections.

·         Over dyed clothes and tight fitted underwear breed bacteria leading to yeast infections.

·         Contraceptive pills that are rich in hormones also breed yeast infections.

·         Tearing and scarring in the vaginal area causes yeast infection that can bring symptoms such as burning, itchiness, discomfort, and irritation.

·         Acne, swelling and painful breasts, depression, and anxiety can also breed yeast infections.

As stated before, yeast infections are not serious but can cause discomfort in women. There are home-made remedies that can ward off yeast infections as well as medications. The best way though would still be prevention which is to avoid the things that can bring it on. Sexual activity does not have to be curtailed as long as protective barriers are used. However, it should also be taken into consideration that the lubricant used in the condom should not contain nonoxynol-9 which has been proven to cause yeast infections.

A diet that is high in sugar and yeast products would naturally cause yeast infections. Yeast thrives on high sugary diets which need to be avoided when the yeast infection is present.

If a contraceptive pill is observed to cause recurring yeast infections, the best remedy would be to consult an OB-GYNE doctor to have it changed to a different brand that contains lesser levels of hormones. It has been proven that hormonal imbalances bring on yeast infections and hormones are the main ingredient in every contraceptive pill.

Tight underwear may look sexy, but the yeast infection that it causes may make you think twice before using or buying one. Dark colored and silky underwear are also breeding grounds for yeast infections. Same goes for panty liners. Too much wearing of panty liners has been known to cause the infection. It is advised to schedule days for wearing the panty liners as bacteria love to breed in them.

Self-treatment can clear yeast infections in a few days, however, should the infection become uncomfortable and painful, a visit to the doctor is still the best remedy.