Natural Herpes Remedies
How to Treat Genital Herpes Naturally
This page looks at natural herpes remedies - using herbs, nutritional supplements, and homeopathy to treat genital herpes.
Genital herpes symptoms will also be discussed.
Two most common herpes viruses that infect humans are herpes simplex 1 (HSV-1) and herpes simplex 2 (HSV-2). Both of these herpes simplex viruses cause small,
irritating, fluid-filled blisters on the skin and the mucous membranes.
HSV-1 causes cold sores, also known as fever blisters, that occur around
the edges of the lips and the nose.
HSV-2 causes blisters on the genitals and therefore is commonly known as genital herpes. Genital herpes is highly contagious and is typically spread through sexual contact.
There is no cure for herpes, and once you have it, it is likely to recur, although some people may have only one outbreak and never have another one. In between
herpes outbreaks, the virus lies dormant in nerve cells.
While most herpes infections do not cause serious complications, a pregnant woman carrying the herpes simplex virus 2 may pass it along to her baby during birth.
If you are pregnant, be sure to tell your doctor if you have HSV-2 or, if you are unsure, ask to be tested for HSV-2. Cesarean section birthing can reduce the risk
of passing the virus to your baby.
Genital Herpes Symptoms
The signs and symptoms of HSV can be so mild that they may go unnoticed. The first outbreak is generally the worst, and the burning and tingling sensations surrounding
the genital areas are its initial symptoms.
Other symptoms include:
- Small red blisters or open sores on genitals or inner thighs (In women, blisters often occur inside the vagina, external genitals, buttocks, anus
or cervix. In men, blisters can appear on the penis, scrotum, buttocks, anus or thighs or inside the urethra)
- Blisters may be painful or not
- Painful urination
- Vaginal discharge (in women)
- Fever, muscle aches
- Swollen lymph glands in the groin
Genital Herpes Causes
Herpes simplex virus 2 is spread through sexual contact and skin-to-skin contact. It can still be contagious even if the infected person does not have active symptoms or
visible blisters. Also, as mentioned above, a mother can pass the infection to her baby during vaginal birth, especially if there are active blisters around the vagina
at the time of delivery.
Natural Herpes Remedies
Natural herpes remedies can be used to tackle genital herpes in two ways: to strengthen the immune system so that herpes outbreaks are less likely; and to use remedies that
have direct anti-viral effects to fight off infections.
Natural Herpes Remedies - Nutritional Supplements
Nutritional supplements that are effective natural herpes remedies include:
- L-lysine: Studies suggest that lysine may help to reduce the number of recurring outbreaks of both cold sores and genital herpes. It
has also been found to be able to shorten the duration of an outbreak. Recommended dosage is 1000 to 3000 mg a day between meals.
NOTE: If you have high cholesterol, heart disease, or high triglycerides, it is best not to use lysine because animal studies suggest that this supplement may
raise cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
- Propolis: Propolis is a resin made by bees. It is rich in flavonoids (antioxidants that help fight infection and boost immune function).
It has been found that propolis can heal genital herpes (and most likely cold sores). Apply propolis ointment to affected areas four times a day.
- Zinc: Zinc has been found in studies to reduce the frequency, duration, and severity of a herpes outbreak. You can take a zinc
supplement (30 mg twice a day with 3 mg of copper), or apply zinc sulfate topically to affected areas.
- Vitamin C: Vitamin C has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It can strengthen the immune system and reduce the duration
of an infection. Recommended dosage is 1000 mg three times a day. Reduce dosage if diarrhea occurs.
Natural Herpes Remedies - Herbs
Herbs that are found to be effective natural herpes remedies include:
- Lemon Balm (Melissa): Lemon balm contains compounds that are antiviral. You can get topical ointments containing lemon balm and apply the
ointment to affected areas. You can also brew a tea using two to four teaspoons of the herb per cup of boiling water. Let cool and apply with a cotton ball several
times a day.
- Aloe Vera: Studies have found that aloe gel used topically may improve the symptoms of genital herpes in men.
- Lomatium Root: Lomatium root is antiviral and can also enhance the immune system. For acute outbreaks of genital herpes, take
500 mg four times daily.
- Echinacea: Echinacea also has antiviral and immune-enhancing properties. Recommended dosage is 500 mg three times a day.
Natural Herpes Remedies - Homeopathy
Homeopathic remedies also make effective natural herpes remedies. Choose a remedy that most closely matches your symptoms and follow the instructions of use
on the label.
- Homeopathic Herpes Nosode: This remedy is specifically made to stimulate an immune response to the herpes virus and can be
used for both herpes caused by HSV-1 and HSV-2.
- Graphites: This remedy is for large, itchy lesions in people who are overweight.
- Natrum muriaticum: This remedy is for chronic genital herpes. Eruptions tend to occur during periods of emotional stress and
symptoms tend to worsen in the daytime.
- Petroleum: This remedy is for lesions that spread to the anus and thighs. Symptoms tend to worsen in winter and improve in summer.
Natural Herpes Remedies - Diet
Base your diet on a simple, natural diet with plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits.
In particular, eat foods rich in the amino acid L-lysine that may help to inhibit viral growth. Foods rich in L-lysine include fish, turkey, chicken, eggs, and potatoes.
Specifically, consume fruits that have high-lysine/low-arginine ratios, such as star fruit, papaya, grapefruit, apricot, pear, apple and fig.
Also consume foods loaded with vitamin C and bioflavonoids to help the skin heal. Some such foods include bell peppers, broccoli, potatoes, and other brightly colored
vegetables and fruits.
Essential fatty acids can promote tissue repair so eat foods rich in EFAs such as flaxseeds, walnuts, and salmon.
Foods to avoid:
- Arginine-rich foods: Arginine-rich foods such as chocolate, cola, peas, grain cereals, peanuts, gelatin, cashews, and beer can trigger
an outbreak since the herpes virus thrives on arginine, which is an essential amino acid that aids the virus' metabolism.
- Sugar-rich foods: Sugar interrupts the healing of tissue and suppress the immune system.
Home Remedies for Fever Blisters
Homeopathic Remedies for Shingles
Natural Home Remedies for Shingles
Balch and Stengler, Prescription for Natural Cures, (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2004).
Duke, J.A. The Green Pharmacy Herbal Handbook. (St. Martin's Paperbacks, 2002).
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