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How to Get Rid of Cold Sores Fast

Updated on July 20, 2013

Cold Sores

Cold sores are clusters of lesions that occur on and around the lips. Also called, fever blisters, cold sores are not only unsightly but painful as well. Not to mention, it could be embarrassing to go outside with an unattractive lesion on your lips. What’s worse is that once you acquire the infection, you may suffer from recurring cold sores. Cold sores heal on their own after two weeks, but you can speed things up. Read on and find out how to get rid of cold sores fast.


What Causes Cold Sores?

Cold sores are causes by the herpes simplex virus. You usually acquire the virus through direct physical contact with an infected person. The virus stays dormant in your skin until the infection is triggered by stress, fever, menstruation, and fatigue, among others. Unfortunately, the herpes simplex virus cannot be cured. This means that you may suffer from chronic cold sores because the virus just stays inside your body. The good news is that there are treatments that can help cure cold sores and reduce the number of times you get them.


How to Get Rid of Cold Sores Fast

1. Apply ice.

For a quick relief, you can ice your cold sores to numb the pain. Do not rub ice directly on your lesions, though. Wrap the ice cubes first in a washcloth or soak a washcloth in cold water.

2. Cover the cold sores with petroleum jelly.

Immediately after getting a cold sore, apply petroleum jelly on and around the area. This helps speed up the healing process and also prevents secondary bacterial infection.

3. Use cold sore creams.

You can buy over-the-counter creams and use it on your cold sores. These topical treatments help get rid of cold sores fast and provide great relief from various symptoms. Just make sure that you follow the instructions on how to use them properly.

4. Try painkillers.

In some cases, cold sores can be a source of tremendous pain and discomfort. You can ease the pain and other symptoms by taking pain killers such as acetaminophen and aspirin. You can also use anesthetics with benzocaine to reduce pain.

5. Apply sunscreen.

Many do not know that sun exposure can aggravate cold sores. It is recommended to use a lip balm with at least SPF 15 before going outside.

6. Avoid salty and spicy foods.

If you are suffering from cold sores, the last thing you want to do is to add to the already excruciating pain. Eating salty and spicy foods will just make matters worse so it is best to stay away from these foods until your cold sores are gone.

7. Avoid triggers.

The virus that causes cold sores is just waiting for a trigger. Common illnesses such as the flu and colds are two of the most common triggers. Also, stressing yourself out won’t do any good when you are trying to get rid of cold sores fast. Stress induces cold sores, so consider practicing breathing exercises and relaxation techniques.


How to Prevent Cold Sores

  • Avoid skin contact with infected persons. Cold sores are very contagious, especially when there are secretions from the blisters.
  • Avoid sharing items. You can also acquire the virus if you use a personal item of someone with cold sores. Towels, utensils, and lipsticks are among the most common culprits here.
  • Be conscious about touching other parts of your body. If you have cold sores, resist the temptation to touch them. Doing so increases the risk of spreading the infection to your eyes and the genital area.


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