You can easily tell the signs if you have ever experienced a cold sore. It’s not hard to know. The first thing you would notice is a tingling sensation. After that, comes the burning sensation around the lip edges or the corner area of your mouth starts burning. Then, what follows next is the outbreak. Nobody likes to carry those ugly-looking red sores around, but then the worst is yet to happen. After a few days, the sore would suddenly burst and crust over, forming a blister. Most people treat these sores at home, but then do we do the right things while treating it? In this article, we will be sharing tips on how to treat cold sores.
Some people prefer to call them fever blisters rather than cold sores. But whichever one you chose to call it, it does not change the fact that it could be seriously bothersome. There are many ways that cold sores could impact your life while they are there. They not only cause pain and discomfort, but they can also ruin your otherwise beautiful smile. The good news is that you can fight off a cold sore before it gets the chance to break out. More so, you don’t need to visit the doctor to get this done. Certain tips for home remedies can soothe your pain and give your cold sore a nicer look as it heals.
What You Should Know About Cold Sores
Cold sores usually appear in the form of blisters. It appears as a pouch under the skin, usually on your lips or around your mouth, which is filled with fluid.
It takes only a few days for them to burst open, ooze out, and crust over. After this happens, it takes another 7-10 days thereabout for them to clear out completely.
In those days leading up to their clearing out, the pain and discomfort that you would experience may be brutal. But then, home remedies can come to the rescue.
Cold sores are caused by a virus that about 90% of adults worldwide would test positive for. This virus is called the Herpes Simplex Virus 1 (HSV-1). HSV 2 may also lead to the formation of cold sores, although that is less common.
Most people who have HSV-1 virus may never come down with any symptoms. However, some people may have to deal with recurrent breakouts in the form of cold sores.
When you first get exposed to HSV-1, you would have your first breakout. This happens within 3 days after you contract the virus and is usually very severe.
Your first breakout is usually going to be your worst. It comes with pain, fever, body aches, headache, and sore throat. The breakout would clear out but then the virus would remain in the body, just that it becomes dormant.
The dormant virus can be triggered to cause a flare-up when you are seriously stressed or due to sun exposure, hormonal fluctuations, illness, or surgery. Such flare-ups are unavoidable, but you can shorten their duration and ease pain and discomfort by following certain tips.
These tips are more or less, home remedies these home remedies that you can do all by yourself. Although all the tips may not work for you, you will find at least one that works. Prescription medications may be more effective, but these home-remedy tips on how to treat cold sores work too.
7 Tips on How to Treat Cold Sores
1. Apply a cold compress
Ice could help to numb pain on the site of the cold sore. But you should not place the ice on the sore directly. Wrap up some ice in a glove, and use it to do a cold compress to the site of the sore.
A cold compress would not shorten the duration of your breakout. However, it provides temporary relief from pain.
2. Make use of Aloe-Vera gel
Aloe-Vera gel is widely known for its therapeutic effects on sunburn. However, it is also very effective for healing cold sores.
Experts say that this gel may help in fighting off viruses like herpes simplex. It also has anti-inflammatory properties which help to ease discomfort and pain. What’s more, you can grow Aloe-Vera in a vase somewhere in your house
3. Use lemon balm
Lemon balm also has antiviral properties. It also has the potential to reduce signs of inflammation like swelling and redness. Furthermore, it could protect the sore from getting infected.
A lip balm that has just 1% lemon balm is good enough to deliver amazing results. You could also use a balm compress made from lemon balm tea. It provides similar benefits.
4. Apply sunscreen
Sunscreen would protect your lips during the healing process. But more importantly, it can help prevent future outbreaks if you wear it daily on your lips. Remember that exposure to sunlight is one of the things that can trigger a flare-up. SPF 30 and above are effective.
5. Reduce stress
Stress can make an otherwise dormant herpes virus to become active again. So you do all you can to destress your life. That is one effective way of preventing and managing cold sores.
Activities that could reduce your stress level include regular exercise and meditation. You should engage yourself with these things while you get rid of stressors in your life.
6. Don’t pick on your fever blisters
Excessive touching would worsen your cold sore. More so, avoid picking on the sore so that you would not accidentally transfer the virus to other parts of your body.
7. If you have identified any triggers, avoid them
Medications for Cold Sore
You don’t have to take medications before cold sores can go away. They usually go away on their own.
But then, you may want to get pain relievers to relieve you of pain. You may also want to get over-the-counter creams and to soften up the skin as healing progresses. In severe cases of constant recurrence, you may see your doctor for prescription antiviral medications.
But then, you should be fine if you follow the home-remedy tips on how to treat cold sores. They are very effective and easy to do.