The first time a person comes in the contact with the virus and gets symptoms is called a primary outbreak. Genital herpes can be spread through direct contact with these sores, most often during sexual activity. However, it also can be spread even if you do not see a sore. Genital herpes simplex is caused by infection with the herpes simplex virus (HSV). Therefore, the infection is transmitted through vaginal, anal and oral sex, close genital contact and contact with other sites such as the eyes and fingers.
Transmission occurs primarily through vaginal, anal and oral-genital sexual contact. The herpes virus is quite fragile and cannot survive long outside the body. Thus, genital herpes tends to be sexually transmitted. Other types of transmission are possible but not usual. Most friction-, moisture-, and heat-producing contact between 2 people involving the skin of the genitals is sexual. HSV-2. This is the type that commonly causes genital herpes. The virus spreads through sexual contact and skin-to-skin contact. HSV-2 is very common and highly contagious, whether or not you have an open sore.