Today in Yikes: Two Thirds of the Population Has Herpes

The more you (didn't want to) know.

Because the World Health Organization only ever wants us to feel great about our bodies, they recently announced that two thirds of the world has herpes. The largely stigmatized STD is one that most people try pretty hard not to get, but Herpes—like pizza—comes in many forms.

3.7 billion people under age 50 carry herpes simplex virus type 1 (in the Americas, 49 percent of women and 39 percent of men), but many people aren't symptomatic, and those who are simply have the occasional cold sore. 

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Meanwhile, only 417 million people are infected with HSV-2, or genital herpes (okay, that's still a lot — but way less than 3.7 billion). The bad news is that you can contract genital herpes from someone with oral herpes — usually thanks to oral sex, which is definitely a bummer. Are dental dams going to have a resurgence in popularity again? Only time will tell.

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