How to Treat and Prevent Cold Sores
They always come at the most inopportune times. Right before a big date or maybe on the day of yearbook pictures, a nasty cold sore will pop up on your lip. Not only are they unsightly, but cold sores can be quite painful too.
Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex 1 virus (HSV-2 is the virus that causes genital herpes) and can last anywhere from a couple of days to a few weeks. Cold sores are spread from one person to another through contact, often from a kiss or sharing of utensils or drinks. While the best way to avoid getting cold sores is to just avoid contact with someone who has one, often the virus is spread from parents to their children at a very young age. If you suffer from frequent cold sores, try these easy remedies to help get rid of your cold sores fast and even stop the cold sore from breaking out.
Apply ice: At the first sense of that familiar tingle, grab an ice cube and apply it to sensitive area. Ice will help freeze the virus and prevent it from getting larger. If the cold sore is already fully formed, the ice can help prevent swelling and even relieve some of the pain.
Know what sets you off: There are many different triggers for cold sores. Some people get them after a fever, while some people find that an overexposure to sun will cause an outbreak. Even things such as menstruation and being overtired can cause cold sores to make an appearance. If you know your triggers, you can better prepare for the impending breakout. For example, if you get cold sores from being in the sun, liberally apply sunscreen to generally infected areas if you are going to the beach.
Antivirals: Since cold sores come from a virus, it only makes sense that an anti-viral would help keep them in check. As soon as you feel the tingle of an oncoming cold sore, take some anti-viral medication. It may help the blister from showing up and at the very least it will shorten the length of time that it is present on your lip.
Lysine: Many people rely on lysine to help prevent cold sores from appearing on their face. Lysine is an amino acid that helps counteract some of the effects of the virus. Lysine can be taken as a supplement or applied as a topical cream.
Cold sores cannot be cured, but with these tricks they can at least be controlled. A cold core left untreated can last for 10-14 days, but these methods can help shorten that period drastically. Many of these remedies can be achieved right from home too without anything more than a trip to the cabinet.
The next time you feel that tingle come along, don’t start to dread the next 2 weeks. You can control your cold sores.