Home Remedy For Herpes Cold Sores

Cold sores, often called fever blisters and confused with canker sores, begin as a small red hardened bump on the lip. Usually the bump is accompanied by a tingling sensation below the skin’s surface. A few days later, that bump becomes a small group of red blisters visible above the skin’s surface (Mayo Clinic). Cold sores are caused by the same virus that causes genital herpes, but most are caused by a different strain of the virus. This strain is passed on from an infected person to a non-infected person through eating utensils, towels, or razors.

Treating Cold Sores

Once a person is infected with the herpes virus, there is no cure. The virus will lie dormant in the person’s body and can reappear at any time without warning. Cold sores are known to occur most frequently during menstruation, under excessive exposure to the sun, stress, and fever. However, there are some home remedies that can help to treat a cold sore when an outbreak occurs (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 2009). For a home remedy to be most effective in treating a cold sore, one should try to use the remedy when they feel the sore coming on and before it breaks through to the outer skin (Laddock, 2009).

One of the simplest home remedies for cold sores is ice. Applying an ice pack every five to tenminutes is an excellent way to slow down a cold sore because the ice stunts the metabolism of the virus and slows down the growth of the cold sore. The application of ice also keeps the cold sore from becoming as large as normal. Ice also helps with some of the pain that accompanies a cold sore. If you cannot apply an ice pack every five to ten minutes as required, then you should apply the ice to the potential cold sore as often as possible (Laddock, 2009).

READ  Deal With Eczema

Tea Bags

Another home remedy for cold sore relief is the application of a damp tea bag. The tea bag should be applied in the same manner as the ice. The type of tea bag is not important. Almost all teas have an herbal composition that includes an element called tannic acid. This type of acid is known to have antiviral properties that can help to combat the symptoms of cold sores. Aloe Vera and lemon balm extract are known to have the same healing capacity as tea bags because of their composition and can be used as well to alleviate the symptoms of cold sores (Laddock, 2009).

Over the Counter Relief

Cold sores can be treated with some medications that are available over the counter. Most of these treatments are creams or ointments that contain lidocaine or benzyl alcohol. The creams are directly applied to the site of the cold sore. You should make sure to wash your hands thoroughly after apply the ointments to avoid spreading the infection to other areas. To relieve the pain that also accompanies the onset of cold sores, you can take an over the counter pain reliever such as Tylenol (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 2009).