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March 26, 2013

Cold Sore Symptoms and Help

Polling Pebbles :  Cold sore on  lower lip
Cold Sore on lower lip  - Rolling Pebbles Files©

Cold sores aren’t a problem for everyone but for those who suffer, outbreaks can be painful, uncomfortable, and embarrassing. In fact, up to 90 per cent of adults carry  herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), but only 20 to 40 per cent will ever experience a cold sore outbreak. When most people hear herpes they think of the sexually transmitted infection that causes sores in the nether regions (genital herpes) and they’d be right. Most cases of genital herpes are caused by herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV2) while most cold sores are cause by HSV1 but both viruses can (although much less common) cause sores in the opposite region if the active virus comes in contact with that region (you possibly can imagine how). Most cold sore sufferers aren’t exactly sure when they first encountered the virus, but once contracted the virus never leaves the body.
Not everyone’s cold sore is triggered by the same thing. But there are several common factors that may cause your outbreaks. Knowing general cold sore triggers can help you identify personal triggers and take the necessary steps to manage them.
First, boost your immune system by getting plenty of rest and exercise and eating a balanced diet. Avoiding the stress in your life is also important. Keep your lips moisturized – drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and use sunblock on your lips all year round to protect your lips from sun and from winter cold.
Treat your cold sore early for best results. The best time to start treatment is when that tingling sensation first happens, before any visible sign of a cold sore appears. When it comes to treating a cold sore, you’ll hear advice on everything from home remedies to lip balm cures.
Learn the cold sore facts so you can face every cold sore with confidence. Ice, vinegar, tea bags, camphor, menthol or phenol may provide temporary relief, but they won’t make your cold sore disappear faster. Look for products that contain the medicinal ingredient, docosanol, which is clinically proven to shorten the duration of a cold sore.It is marketed by Healthcare Brands under the name Erazaban in Europe and Abreva in U.S.A. and Canada.

Remember to avoid transmitting the virus to others through skin contact (kissing is the first thing coming to mind). Cold sores are most contagious when someone has an open blister present on their lips until the point where the blister has completely healed.  At the same time, note that certain people can spread the virus through their saliva even if there is no open blister present.Also, wash your hands frequently if you’ve touched your lips or brushed your teeth to avoid spread of the virus.

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