WHILE most people have heard of herpes, many do not know that it can be highly dangerous in young babies.
Here’s everything you need to know about the virus.
Getty Images Neonatal herpes can be caused by kissing a baby while you have a cold sore
What is herpes?
Herpes is highly contagious and caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV), which triggers painful blisters.
It is spread by skin-to-skin contact – during vaginal, oral or anal sex – or even just a kiss.
There are two types of herpes – HSV 1 and HSV 2 – which enter the body through the moist skin of the mouth, penis, vagina and rectum.
Both types can cause cold sores on the mouth, genital herpes, whitlows (small abscesses) on the fingers and hands.
Herpes is a chronic condition as it can become active after years of lying dormant in the body.
The average outbreak rate is four to five times in the first two years of infection and less frequently afterwards.
What are the symptoms of herpes?
When it comes to herpes associated with cold sores, symptoms include:
- swollen and irritated gums with small, painful sores in and around the mouth
- sore throat and swollen glands.
- producing more saliva than normal.
- high temperature
- feeling sick (nausea)
Symptoms of genital herpes include:
- small blisters that burst to leave red, open sores around your genitals, rectum, thighs and buttocks
- blisters and ulcers on the cervix in women
- vaginal discharge in women
- pain when you pass urine
- a general feeling of being unwell and flu-like symptoms
What is neonatal herpes and how can babies catch herpes?
Neonatal herpes is when a newborn baby is infected with the herpes virus.
The infection can be restricted to a baby’s eyes, mouth or skin. If this is the case, most babies will recover with antiviral treatment.
However, the condition can become life-threatening if the virus spreads to a baby’s organs – such as the brain – and almost a third of babies in this situation will die, even if they receive treatment.
Babies are at risk if their mother has contracted genital herpes for the first time within the last six weeks of pregnancy and had a vaginal delivery.
The risk is much lower if the mother developed genital herpes or suffered a flare-up a significant period before the pregnancy.
The herpes virus can also be passed on if a person with a cold sore kisses a baby or a mother breastfeeds while she has herpes sores on her breasts.
Getty Images Neonatal herpes is very serious in babies and if you’re concerned you should take your child to A&E
How can neonatal herpes be prevented?
If you’re pregnant and have had genital herpes at any point in your life, tell your doctor or midwife.
Medication may be prescribed to prevent an outbreak and delivery by caesarean section may be recommended if the herpes has occurred for the first time in the last six weeks of pregnancy.
If you develop a cold sore or think you’re coming down with a herpes infection do not kiss babies and wash your hands before touching a baby.
If you’re breastfeeding and have a cold sore wash your hands before feeding and cover up any cold sores so you do not accidentally touch them.
Is it illegal to knowingly give someone an STD in the UK?
According to UK law, knowingly transmitting a sexual infection can be prosecuted as grievous bodily harm under the Offences against the Person Act.
Currently, US singer Usher is embroiled in a legal battle as he has been accused of giving multiple people herpes.
In August, it was revealed that the Grammy-winning artist is being sued by two women and one man who claim he infected them with herpes.
Laura Helm, one of several people suing the artist, says she slept with the singer, real name Usher Raymond, on two separate occasions.
But just days before she filed the lawsuit she reportedly said she wasn’t worried about getting the virus as Usher had always worn protection, seemingly contradicting her claims in court documents.
In July, another lawsuit claims Usher paid a woman £800,000 after he infected her with herpes while knowing that he had the incurable disease.
And accuser Quantasia Sharpton, 21, alleges she romped with the singer on her 19th birthday.
What Is Trichotillomania, What Has Towie Star Sam Faiers Said About The Hair Pulling Condition And How Is It Related To Ocd?
PEOPLE of all ages and both genders can go bald, with hereditary, genetic and compulsive conditions all causing people to lose their hair.
Trichotillomania, also known as trich, and it ss a condition where someone can’t resist plucking their hairs, with TV personality Sam Faiers revealing she suffers from it.
Alamy Trichotillomania, otherwise known as trich, affects women more than men
What is trichotillomania?
The NHS website describes it as a condition where sufferers can’t resist the urge to pull out their hair.
But not just the hair on their head, but eyebrow, eyelashes, beards and pubic hair are also targeted.
It is more common in girls rather than boys, and mostly affects teenagers and young adults.
Rex Features Sam Faiers wears false eyelashes now
The urge to pull out a hair intensifies until they do so, which brings them a temporary sense of relief.
It can also be done subconsciously, where the person isn’t aware they’re doing it.
It can lead to bald, uneven patches on people’s head or thinning hair in some areas.
There is no singular cause for trich, but it can be used by some people as a method to cope with anxiety or stress.
It could also be caused by changes to hormone levels during puberty, or a chemical imbalance in the brain.
In certain cases it could be classed as a form of self-harm.
What has Sam Faiers said about the hair pulling condition?
Model and TV personality Sam Faiers revealed she has the condition, and it stems from trauma surrounding her stepdad being jailed.
The mum-of-two spoke candidly about trich in her YouTube videos, revealing she was diagnosed when she was eight.
The former TOWIE star said she later discovered its root cause after a speaking with a psychologist when she was an adult.
Instagram She used to wear mittens and dip her hands in nail repellent to try and stop
She began to pick out her eyelashes, and confesses that she still does so in her sleep despite trying multiple remedies over the years, including mittens and nail-biting repellent.
Despite her eyelashes growing back, she would just pluck them out again, and resorted to false eyelashes.
Is it related to OCD?
Trich is similar to Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), as it can be caused by a chemical imbalance.
With OCD, sufferers also feel a compulsion, or urge, to complete an act.
OCD and trichotillomania can also both be triggered by a negative or traumatic event in their life, and can also be used as a coping mechanism.
I Hate The Fact My Mates Fancy Mum And She Won’t Cover Up… It’s So Embarrassing I Want To Die
AN embarrassed schoolboy has pleaded with his mum to cover up – because all his mates fancy her and it “makes him want to die”.
Carla Bellucci, 36, mum to Jermaine, 15, Tanisha, 13, and Jayden, 10, from Borehamwood, Herts., said she was taking her lead from actress Liz Hurley, 51, whose son Damian is begging her to change the way she dresses because his mates think she’s hot.
Olivia West – The Sun Jermaine says it’s “gross” his pals fancy his mum
But year 10 pupil Jermaine said he had every sympathy with Damien because, like him, he was embarrassed by his mum’s behaviour.
He confessed if he passes her in the street he pretends he doesn’t know her.
“If I see my mum and my sister in the street when I am with my mates I pretend I don’t know her or to not see her,” he confessed. “My mates see mum at school or at my house and tell me how jealous they are.
“They say they want to date her or be me and I just want to die. I wish she’d be like other mums. She should cover up. I’m embarrassed.”
Alley Einstein Carla loves posing for selfies
Jermaine told how his pals tried to befriend his mum, who has had breast implants, on social media – forcing him to take the reins of her account.
“The lads constantly try to friend her on social media and I have to go through her account and tell her who to block,” he admitted. “I wish she wasn’t on social media. It’s so embarrassing to be told mum is hot.”
Like Damien, who has confessed to snapping pictures of her mum, Jermaine has also been encouraged to photograph Carla as she poses.
“When we’re on holiday she asks me or my sister to take pictures of her,” he admitted. If she asks me to take a picture of her I deliberately mess it up so she can’t use it.”
Alley Einstein Jermaine avoids his mum if he sees her in the street
And he thinks all parents should be banned from social media or at least only have private accounts.
“I have begged her to set her account to private,” Jermaine confirmed. “I even try and sneak onto her accounts and delete pictures. My mates love trying to find other kids parents on Facebook and Twitter and then ribbing each other. I get why Damian, Liz Hurley’s son, would be embarrassed.
“My mates tell me mum is fit. I hate that because she’s my mum and it’s just gross. If I told them I fancied their mum they’d get all weird too. I hate it when they perve on my mum – I have to live with her. She should understand that.
“Why do teenagers have to suffer like this?”
But Carla, who works in retail sales, said she found her son’s mates’ comments funny – and he needed to accept she was proud of her body.
“My son complains he is embarrassed by my clothes and looks because that his mates tell him I am ‘fit’,” Carla, who is a fan of Liz Hurley, said. “He complains my jeans are too tight, or that I don’t wear clothes that are mumsy enough.
“I am not going to ever be a mum who wears twin sets and pearls. Looking good and wearing on-trend clothes is a great example to my kids.”
Olivia West – The Sun Carla says she won’t change how she dresses
She continued: “My kids know my motto is, ‘Have pride in yourself and you’ll feel great.’
“I refuse to walk around with a paper bag on my head.”
Like Liz, Carla plans to “still post photos of herself when she is 51”. “Parenting these days is complicated because mums don’t immediately become ‘old’ or ‘old fashioned’ the moment the kids are born or start school,” she explained. “Liz and I are the new generations of mums who are proud of our bodies and looks.
“Cosmetic surgery, skin care products and access to gyms mean we’re able to look better for longer and no one wants to hide that under baggy jumpers and tracksuit pants.”
Alley Einstein She loves posing for pictures – but her boy doesn’t love her doing it
“Just because I look good and am not a wrinkly doesn’t mean should change even for my son. Being embarrassed by your mother is part of growing up.
Kids will just have to get used to it. Being a hip mum means my kids get to do hip and fun things and I know they won’t give those things up.
“Liz shouldn’t back down either. She’s got a fabulous body and I hope I look that good in my 50s. Let’s face it teenage boys will always find something to complain about. That’s how we know we’re being good parents when they complain.”
Mum Is Torn After Finding Out Her Friend Who Has Three Kids Is Gay… So Should She Make Him Tell His Wife?
A MUM has started a debate online after asking for advice about her married friend who recently came out as gay – despite having a wife and family.
The helpless woman didn’t know whether she should encourage her pal to be “true to himself”, or to condemn his actions and force him to tell his family.
Getty A woman took to Mumsnet and asked for advice on her married gay pal (Picture posed by model)
Taking to the parenting forum, she said: “If your friend is gay and he just recently told you, but you suspected he’s known all along and he has a family, would you encourage him to embrace his sexuality?
“My current stance is to stay away from the issue, but my other friend says it’s hard to not be true to oneself and so he’s encouraging him.”
The mum went on to explain that the man has three children, aged nine, six and two, and may have had a change of heart about his sexuality after recently turning 40.
There was no doubt in her mind that there was another man spurring him on, and that he would still provide for his children even if he came out to his wife.
Getty – Contributor Her married friend came out of gay after many years of her suspecting, and both were confused on what to do (Picture posed by model)
One user, who believed the man should embrace his emotions, said: “He should live true to himself. Being gay and leaving his wife for a man wouldn’t make him any better or worse a father.”
But many other users were quick to criticise the man’s actions, claiming it would be selfish of him to leave his family and be “true to himself”.
One mum argued: “It’s rather selfish of him to have had a family knowing his sexual orientation now he’s going to ruin all of their lives, his poor wife has been duped for years.”
Another, who resonated with the story, said: “My dad came out as gay when I was 13 and I found it so hard to process. Your friend needs to be honest with his wife, he needs to leave.”
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