Chances Are, You Have Herpes

Chances Are, You Have Herpes

In late 2015, the World Health Organization released its estimate for the prevalence of the herpes virus. It concluded that approximately 67% of people under 50 were infected with HSV-1, the strain of the virus that causes cold sores on the lips and can also be spread to the genitals. Most carriers of HSV-1 catch the virus from mouth-to-mouth contact early in life. The herpes virus is literally older than humanity itself, and thus far, scientists haven't discovered a cure. However, considering how common it is, the stigma that often accompanies it seems largely unwarranted.

04:50

Key Facts In This Video

  • 1

    There are eight different strains of the herpes virus, but humans are most commonly infected with type 1 or type 2. (0:38)

  • 2

    Even if you're not showing symptoms of herpes, you can still spread the virus. (2:20)

  • 3

    Some potential herpes treatments target the virus as it makes its transition from nerve cells into skin cells. (3:19)

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