The Ultimate Guide to Herpes Symptoms

The Ultimate Guide to Herpes Symptoms

The Ultimate Guide to Herpes Symptoms

Herpes is an extremely common virus. As many as 20 per cent of people in the United States have genital herpes, and more than 60 million Americans have oral herpes (such as cold sores. If you don’t know that you have herpes, you may be infected without realizing it.

What are the symptoms of oral herpes?

Oral herpes, also known as the common cold sore, is a common form of herpes caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV). It’s estimated that 1 out of every five people in the United States has oral herpes.

People with oral herpes often experience sores on their lips, mouth and throat. Many people with oral herpes don’t even know they have it because they may never notice these small blisters or outbreaks. 

The common cold sore breakout usually appears as a cluster of small fluid-filled blisters that develop around the outside edge of your lips and inside your mouth. These can be painful to touch or eat until they dry up and go away on their own, usually within two days to a week after first appearing.

The symptoms associated with an outbreak vary depending on where you have it:

  • Sores on your lips – painless bumps/sores on your lip lines where you’ve been kissed by someone who already had cold sores; swelling inside your mouth or throat; discomfort when swallowing food; itching around the nose area (if the infection spreads there too)
  • Sore throat – soreness when swallowing food/drinking liquids

Cold sores on your lips, mouth or throat

The HSV can be transmitted through skin-to-skin contact or shared items like toothbrushes, razors and towels. They’re highly contagious and can spread easily if you have active symptoms of a cold sore outbreak.

Cold sores usually clear up within 2-3 weeks, but for some people, they can last up to 1 month or longer if untreated. If you think you might have a cold sore coming on, you must take action now so it doesn’t turn into something worse!

Sore throat

You may feel pain when you swallow or notice your throat is stiff and sore. You may have a sore throat for several days. The pain can be mild to severe and may worsen with time.

There are many reasons for having a sore throat, but one is most likely the herpes simplex virus (HSV). Both types of HSV viruses can cause painful swelling in the back of the throat (oropharynx). This condition is called herpetic pharyngitis or oropharyngeal herpes.

Swollen glands in your neck or throat

Swollen lymph nodes can signify an infection or something more serious, such as cancer. Lymph nodes are small, bean-shaped organs that store white blood cells and help fight infections.

Swollen glands may signify a viral (herpes) or bacterial infection, such as mononucleosis. 

A fever is another common symptom of mononucleosis and can help distinguish it from herpes outbreaks. If you have swollen lymph nodes in the neck near your Adam’s apple or thyroid gland that doesn’t go away after about six weeks or if the swelling is accompanied by other symptoms like sore throat or fatigue, then it could be mononucleosis.”

A doctor should examine swollen glands to determine whether they’re infected with bacteria or viruses so they can prescribe medication accordingly.


In addition to the above symptoms, fever is a common symptom of herpes. However, be aware that it isn’t always present and can mean many things other than herpes. Fever is also often associated with cold sores and may also indicate another type of infection.

What are the symptoms of genital herpes?

Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by the herpes simplex virus. HSV-2, which causes genital herpes, is spread through contact with a sore on an infected person.

HSV-1 and HSV-2 can be found in and released from the sores that the viruses cause, but they also are released between outbreaks from skin that does not appear to be broken or to have a sore. Most people with HSV-2 infection do not realize they are infected because many people have no symptoms or signs of infection.

The most common way for someone to get an STD is through sexual contact. You can get genital herpes if you engage in sexual activity with someone who has an active outbreak of lesions or who has visible blisters on their genitals or buttocks without using safer sex barriers such as latex condoms and dental dams every time you have sex (oral, anal, and vaginal).

If you think you might have gotten genital herpes from receiving oral sex after performing fellatio on someone who has cold sores around their mouth area—whether they knew about it or not—it’s worth getting tested for both viral strains at once since it may take ten days for your body to produce antibodies against either strain of the virus after exposure so results won’t come back as positive until then.

A cluster of blistery sores in your genital area

The most common symptom of herpes is a cluster of blistery sores in your genital area. They can also appear on the thighs, buttocks and lower abdomen. The blisters eventually burst, leaving tender ulcers that scab over before healing. You may have many outbreaks or just one or two in a year.

If you think you have herpes, see your doctor as soon as possible for diagnosis and treatment with antiviral medications to alleviate symptoms and speed recovery time.

Painful urination

Painful urination, or dysuria, is a common herpes symptom. It’s the most common one! It may be accompanied by cloudy or bloody urine as well. See your doctor immediately if you think an STD is causing your painful urination and other symptoms.

Your doctor will want to rule out a urinary tract infection (UTI) before diagnosing HSV-2. A UTI can cause pain when you pee and make it difficult for you to empty your bladder—both of which are symptoms of genital herpes as well (and can also lead to kidney stones). So if your doctor thinks it might be something else besides herpes causing your painful urination and other symptoms, they’ll need to test for other STDs first with a urine culture test or blood test (to look for chlamydia).

Swollen lymph nodes in your groin area

Swollen lymph nodes are small, bean-shaped structures that help fight infection. They’re located throughout the body and play an important role in the immune system. If you have swollen lymph nodes, they may be tender to touch or painful to move.

Sometimes it can lead to more serious complications such as herpetic whitlow or herpes keratitis (eye disease). You should see your doctor if you experience any symptoms involving your eyes or genitals .After touching something contaminated with saliva from someone with cold sores.

Herpes is a common virus.

Herpes is a common virus that can be passed from person to person through skin-to-skin contact. It’s not curable, but it can be managed. Herpes symptoms can be treated with antiviral medications.


We hope this blog post has helped you better understand the symptoms of herpes. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms. We urge you to see a doctor immediately so that they can test for the herpes virus and treat it with medication.