Even if there are no visible lesions, herpes can be spread through a process known as shedding. During shedding, the herpes virus is active on the skin, usually where the person has had symptoms before. As a result, any type of genital, oral, or skin-to-skin contact with the virus may transmit it. There is no way to know when another person is shedding, but safer sex practices significantly minimize the risk of contracting herpes.
- Q Is herpes simplex serious?
- Q Can cold sores or fever blisters be cured?
- Q Can I infect my partner with herpes if I have no symptoms?
- Q Should monogamous couples get tested for herpes simplex virus type 2?
- Q What increases my risk for herpes simplex?
- Q What is herpes simplex?