You wake up in the morning to find that your glands feel swollen and your lips are feeling tight and inflamed. Oh no, it looks like you’re experiencing a cold sore outbreak. Also known as fever blisters, these small groups of blisters around the mouth and lips are due to infection by the herpes virus.
Herpes simplex virus (HSV,) comes in two formats, HSV-1 and HSV-2, with both strains of the virus-producing cold sores. HSV typically enters the body through breaks in the skin. Touching or kissing an infected individual spreads the highly contagious virus.
Statistics from the CDC show that up to 90-percent of Americans will suffer from cold sore infection at least once in their lifetime – with 40-percent of the population experiencing multiple breakouts. Curing the blisters requires the use of medication prescribed by the doctor. However, if you get to the sore in time, a home remedy can reduce the intensity of the outbreak and reduce the healing period.
Here are eight effective cold sore remedies to try at home.
Cold sores are painful. As the infection starts to reach the surface of your skin, you’ll notice the affected area begins to turn red and feel sensitive to the touch. You might not even realize your infected during the initial incubation stage. As the blisters start to “head,” you’ll notice your skin turns bright red and small bumps begin to appear.
During this stage, the blisters feel irritating, and if they’re close to your mouth, you may find yourself unconsciously licking your lips to keep them moist. As the infection continues, the blisters feel warm and painful.
At this stage of the infection, ice is your friend. Wrap a block of ice in a thin towel and apply it to your lip. The cooling effect of the ice reduces swelling and soothes pain symptoms. Ice your cold sore for periods of 5-minutes on and 5-minutes off until you experience relief.