Using propolis for herpes may be effective in relieving symptoms because it contains anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties. Also known as bee glue, propolis is a waxy substance produced by bees that may have anti-fungal and anti-microbial properties. A strong antibacterial, propolis may enhance the immune system and is commonly available in capsule form, as a mouth rinse, and liquid.
Genital herpes is caused by a virus and is sexually transmitted. Using propolis to treat herpes may decrease the severity of an outbreak and propolis cream or ointment may heal the infection quicker. When oral propolis preparations are used in conjunction with propolis extract, anti-herpetic properties may even be more evident.
Taking an oral preparation of propolis for herpes is a popular alternative treatment for the virus. Anti-viral medications used to relieve symptoms can cause side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Sometimes these side effects are so significant that it causes the patient to give up treatment. Although the herpes simplex virus is chronic and cannot be cured, it can become dormant. The herpes virus is also responsible for chicken pox, shingles, and cold sores.
Since using propolis for herpes has been shown to relieve symptoms, it has been studied for other uses such as treating cancer and treating wounds. Propolis cream may have the ability to hasten the healing process and repair the damaged tissue of cuts, sores, bruises, and scrapes. In addition, propolis cream may help mild burns heal faster. In fact, it has been shown that just a single application can help speed healing of damaged epithelial tissue.
People suffering from herpes should not self-treat themselves with propolis unless their health care provider determines that it safe to do so. By foregoing or delaying conventional treatment for the virus, the patient may be putting himself at risk for complications. Herpes can resolve on its own without treatment, but resistant strains may be difficult to manage without anti-viral medications.
Bee propolis also contains amino acids, vitamins, and flavonoids. Substances known as terpenes and phenolic acids are also found in propolis, though their effectiveness in treating herpes is not fully understood. Even though propolis is considered generally safe to use, the risks and benefits of taking propolis for herpes needs to be discussed with a physician before treatment begins. Minor skin irritations such as redness, swelling, and irritation may occur when using propolis cream.