Cold sores are recurrent blisters caused by herpes simplex virus, and they are also sometimes referred to as fever blisters. These small blisters generally occur on and around the lip and mouth area. It is estimated that up to 80% of people carry this virus and it is extremely contagious – especially when the blister is about to, or starting to, show. Unfortunately once you have this virus in your body it will remain forever, however there are some steps you can take to help speed along the healing and even to reduce the frequency of having a cold sore outbreak.
The first stage of a cold sore is numbness and tingling in the area that the blister(s) will appear. It is at this time that you could pass this infection along to others so be extra careful not to kiss or share straws with anyone else. The blister then occurs and can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. Although it may be tempting – do not touch or attempt to cover the sore as it may aggravate it further. If you do have to use makeup to cover it for a very special occasion – be sure to disinfect the makeup thoroughly – or best to throw it out! The sore will go through several stages after the initial redness – it can swell and even ooze a little. The blister will then scab over and slowly disappear.
Cold sore outbreaks will go away on their own without treatment within about 7-10 days but you can speed up the healing time using topical vitamins from a health food store such as C and E, and/or using supplements such as ZENMED Avacare. If you have any pain or oozing associated with the cold sore a clean cold cloth pressed gently to the area should help.
Some people that carry the cold sore virus in their system have very few outbreaks while others find they have one after the other. It is very important to keep yourself healthy and stress free. Eating properly, getting enough sleep and keeping stress at a minimum are a must to keeping your cold sores under control. A supplement such as ZENMED Zenhance works great to strengthen the immune system naturally. Exposure to sunlight can also be a trigger for some so shade your face as much as possible and wear your sunscreen!