In this article we will provide the information you need in order to control herpes recurrences and the effects of recurrences to as high a degree as possible. Not only can you gain some measure of control through knowing your own body and anticipating problem situations, but you will also be able to work towards reduced frequency and duration of outbreaks.
In most cases, herpes seems just to “go away” (become essentially dormant) in a few years. For many, this disappearance occurs much more rapidly; for others, the adaptation process is less successful. Nothing just goes away by itself! Something happens to cause diminished symptoms. But you can play a large role in the process of reducing symptoms to their physiological minimum, which is permanent or close to permanent dormancy.
The focus will be on three main areas: general health if and well-being; the prodromal and trigger mechanisms for recurrences and how you can eliminate some and use others to your beneﬁt; and ﬁnally, stress, that blanket category for a host of factors that inﬂuence recurrences, recovery, and adaptation in general.
The effects of herpes symptoms on the emotional and behavioral areas of life is quite clear. This also also occurs in the opposite direction to a large degree. Things you do, think, and feel often can take on the capacity to feed back into the physical aspects of the problem. This channeling of life issues into symptoms is, at least for a while, very common. It’s as if herpes becomes the path of least resistance for stresses of the world until that link is broken. This section should help alleviate that problem and the information will be applicable to the many areas of your life that can be touched by herpes.
General Physical Well-being
Eat well, sleep well, exercise properly, and behave with your body’s best interests in mind. You can consult. If your physician or a good book on diet for nutritious and balanced eating habits. But be careful. There are as many myths around what is good and bad for you in the way of food as there are about herpes. A normal well-balanced diet provides everything your body needs to energize and renew itself. A rapid shift in diet will take some time for your body to adapt to. Dieting without supervision can compound already existing problems, lead to nutritional deficiencies and create additional difficulties simply through the effect of rapid change. Change without preparation involves a shift in psychological patterns, one of the cornerstones of stress. If you are concerned about nutritional deficiencies, consult your physician. Don’t self – diagnose or self-treat.
Cigarettes, marijuana, alcohol, and sugar are all examples of immunological suppressants – they can lower your immune system responses. However, the problem really is one of overdoing, especially when there are indications that you should he taking care of yourself. Your body adapts very well to a moderate, constant intake of substances which, if taken in excess or in isolation can depress your immune system resources. While stopping smoking will deﬁnitely make you a lot healthier in general and protect you somewhat from lung cancer and cardiac problems, you probably won’t see a direct and clear effect on herpes and certainly not for some time. Excess, chronic, and sudden insult to the system is really what we are worried about here. In the simplest terms, don’t hurt yourself. Don’t burn yourself out too often, especially when you have prodromal signs! Having a good time is one thing – overdoing it is another. Incidentally, oversleeping is just as bad as under-sleeping. Your body balance gets out of tune.
Keep yourself in reasonable shape. It’s irrelevant how, at least as far as herpes is concerned. Do what’s good for you to keep your mood, energy and physical well-being in as good condition as possible.
Eating and Sleeping
Eating well, sleeping well, exercising well, and acting for your own benefit all interact very strongly with how you think. Here’s a good example from someone I know who is in excellent physical shape, a marathon runner who asserted that he could count on an outbreak of herpes a day after a race whether a ten mile race or a twenty-six mile race. His head was set on the idea that really draining his body resources would result in a recurrence. I asked him if he got the same results from his practice races as from his formal ones (not to mention his hundred mile-a-week training regimen). The question was sufficient to interrupt the pattern. When he saw the races as really draining his body’s resources and as something detrimental to him, he had an outbreak. He did not think about his training in this way. His mind-set, which included a high load of self-induced anxiety about herpes, was playing a role here. When he realized this, he was able to break the pattern.
Behave well in the sense of knowing what’s good for you and what’s bad for you and recognize the distinction between self-destruction and what you can take in stride.
Prodromal and Trigger Factors
Gaining control over herpes means two things first, being able to anticipate events and cope with them; and second, playing a direct role in symptom reduction. There are no guaranteed prescriptions to abort outbreaks, but there are many things that can be done to help reduce the internal and external factors that influence them.
The first step in gaining control is to know your own body. Your body’s hormonal, immunological and neural machinery work very much as a dynamic interrelated unit to produce the physical feelings you have as well as your emotional tone, thinking processes, and behavioral patterns. Knowing how your body and mind respond and deal with viral invasion, with life’s changes, with happy and sad circumstances is the best source of information for coping with your life in general and herpes in particular. Learn to discriminate among different feelings.
Once you are sensitive to your own body and emotions, your awareness of changes becomes automatic, and you won’t need to obsessively observe every sensation. Instead, you will become tuned in to changes related to herpes. You won’t even have to think about it, you’ll just “know.” Later, you’ll be able to use that information to shift your personal focus away from herpes. But let’s stand with that set of initial signs that provide the information you need to begin to gain control over herpes.