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How is genital herpes transmitted?

Dr Louisa Draper

"Genital herpes is particularly contagious during the stage where blisters are present. You should not have sex with a partner who has genital herpes sores. "

Dr Louisa Draper

View Genital Herpes Treatments
Genital herpes is caused by a virus which is transmitted during sex. It is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases in the UK. You can have the virus and not have any symptoms, which is why the virus is easily passed on between partners.

You can not catch genital herpes from:

  • sharing towels
  • sharing food or drinks
  • kissing someone who has it
  • swimming in a swimming pool
  • shaking hands with someone who has it
  • using a public toilet

You can catch genital herpes from:

  • vaginal sex
  • anal sex
  • oral sex