A Cold Sore Treatment That Is Tried And True

VitaminB-12 Saves the Day

It was a winter night a couple of years ago. My wife was on the other end of the phone line, and sounded distressed, “Dad, what type of vitamins do we take? I think I’m having a cold sore!” She was all the way across the continent in Las Vegas, and set to give an important presentation at a large conference the next day. A cluster of shiny big, red blisters on a corner of the mouth was the last thing she would want.

We both are vulnerable to cold sores. Often times, excessive stress would bring upon a breakout. And her day job is usually rather stressful. For me, it’s the cold weather. In the winter, if I fail to apply enough lip balm before leaving the house, an itchy and red rash will likely pop up somewhere around the lips within hours.

Those who have ever suffered from cold sores would tell you how nasty they could get. First it will just itch a little with some redness; blisters will soon develop and cause pain. After the blisters appear, the cold sores will break open, ooze a clear fluid. This will last several very long days. Then the blisters will crust over and thankfully disappear. Unfortunately for me, this whole ordeal would always last two weeks; and the cold sores are very painful, not to mention that those very unsightly but eye-catching blisters are downright embarrassing when you have to meet people all the time.

Since cold sores are caused by virus, there is no real cure; all you can do is to find something to lessen the pain and discomfort. I had tried skin creams, ointments, or whatever I can get my hands on, including vitamin B complex, all without meaningful effects.

Eventually, I spotted a product at a local chain supermarket that looked promising. It’s called “Releeve ” and “only sold in Pathmark”. This product, boldly labeled “1 Day Cold Sore Symptom Treatment”, is essentially a 0.13% benzalkonium chloride solution, a brownish liquid that you apply 3 – 4 times throughout the day. It was quite pricey, at almost $20.00 for this little 6 ml (0.20 oz) bottle at the time I bought it. But I was desperate, and willing to give anything reasonable a try. Well, it worked, somewhat, and soothed the itchy and painful symptoms, though not “in just a day” as “guaranteed”.

We were happy with the Releeve , and had been using it since.

But my wife did not bring it with her. She was all alone at her Vegas hotel. It was up to her to find some kind of B vitamins late at night in some unfamiliar territory. I wished her good luck but did not hold out much hope in finding anything miraculous for her new cold sore.

I was expecting to see some nightmarish red blisters somewhere on my wife’s lips when her car pulled up the driveway two days later. But there she was, walking in the door, lovely as ever. Nowhere to be seen was that expected unsightly cold sore; and I would have missed the little discoloring on her lower right lip if she did not point it out to me.

“What did you do?” I marveled.

It turned out, there was a miracle. My wife actually found something, and the only thing that was B vitamin related, at her hotel’s gift shop. It was B12 lozenge (1000 mcg) made by Thompson . This 30-count bottle set her back almost $7.00. But hey, that was Vegas, what do you expect? It worked; and most importantly, it saved the day!

In a delicious way. This B12 lozenge has “natural cherry flavor plus folic acid” and taste like candy. You put it under you tongue once a day at the onset of a cold sore and wait for a speedy recovery.

My wife and I use it in conjunction with Releeve , soothing the itch and pain while letting the B12 lozenges work the magic. This combo treatment works like a one-two punch. If you are able to catch the virus at its very onset, this combo will nip the cold sore in the bud, and the result will resemble that of my wife’s – like nothing really happened. Of course you cannot be that lucky most of the time, either because you are not paying attention or are away from home. In this case, this combo can still at least cut your healing time in half.

I recently recovered from a flu (not sure if it was H1N1) and nasty blisters started to breakout on a Monday. Now I was not too concerned any more since I had my cold sore busters! I did what I had to do: slip a B12 lozenge under the tongue and rub on the Releev three to four times a day. Sure enough, I looked normal again within five days, just in time for my Saturday basketball games. That saved me from the friendly ridicules from my buddies.

Thirty lozenges wouldn’t last long. Soon we had to look for a new supply. Unfortunately, this Thomson brand is not available at any of our local stores; whatever resembling it was unreasonably pricey. So I got on-line to shop. A quick googling brought me to iHerb.com . This twelve-year old site has Better Business Bureau (BBB) credential, no complaints shown from my research and offered me the best prices: I could get the same 30-count bottle of Thompson B12 lozenges for only $1.64 instead of the nearly $7.00 at that Vegas hotel gift shop! Making the deal sweeter, iHerb.com gave me a $5.00 discount as a first time buyer; so I paid next to nothing for my initial order!

And B12 lozenge is not the only product they provide great prices on. In fact, iHerb offers literally over 16,000 vitamins, dietary supplements and other health products.

So give it a try if you are in need of any of these products. Use referral code: BUN027 , and you too, can enjoy the $5.00 discount for your very first order. (Disclaimer: I will earn a commission equivalent to 4% of the purchase price each time when the referral code BUN027 is used.)

Well, the surest way to defeat cold sores is to prevent one from happening in the first place. For me, I would cover my lips with globs of Chapstick in the cold weather. You can never be careful enough, however, and cold sores do find their way to show up. But when that happens, I know I have a weapon - a powerful combo – to help bust those nasty blisters.

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Comments 6 comments

brandasaur profile image

brandasaur 4 years ago from Planet X

Great hub. Voted up. :) Looking forward to try the b12 lozenge!


CoolBunch profile image

CoolBunch 4 years ago from New Jersey Author

Dear Brandasaur, thanks for visiting! Good luck with your treatment, and please let me know how it went!


get rid of cold 4 years ago

cold sore is a very common problem which can be treated with the help of some creams and some cold sore devices. There can be many reasons for cold sore such as less immunity, stress ,tension etc.


CoolBunch profile image

CoolBunch 4 years ago from New Jersey Author

You are absolutely right, "get rid of cold", and we should look at those factors for prevention. Thanks for visiting!


Soso 2 years ago

Just a thought... Many people are deficient in B12. Have you ever been tested? It's a simple blood test. Low Magnesium levels are also a culprit in repetitive cold sores. Stress on the body could be a variety of factors. The deficient levels could be caused by diet and it could be caused by inflammation in the gut that makes it harder for your body to absorb those nutrients. Symptoms are very much like IBS. Perhaps getting checked can help in the long run.


CoolBunch profile image

CoolBunch 2 years ago from New Jersey Author

This is a fair and educated suggestion. I will discuss with matter with my doctor at my next annual physical, and so should anyone with cold sore issues. Thanks, Soso!

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