9 Natural Home Remedies for Cold Sores
If you had cold sores before, you might know the signs. It starts with a tingling sensation on the corner of your mouth or edge of your lip and then begins to burn. Then a blister appears, which is filled with fluid. They last around 7 to 10 days or, in many cases, up to 3 weeks and may break, open, ooze, or crust over. These 7 to 10 days or a few weeks can be very painful if not treated well.
There are hundreds of cold sore remedies and prescribed treatments available, but how do you know which one to go for? Well, the best to try is a natural remedy because it doesn’t have any harmful effects. We’ve examined the most prevalent natural remedies for cold sores and they are listed below.
1. Lemon Balm
Lemon balm has antiviral properties known as Melissa officinalis that helps to reduce redness and swelling. Make sure you use a balm with at least 1% of lemon balm extract to get significant results.
2. Use Ice
While ice may not speed up the healing process, it reduces the inflammation and discomfort you may feel. Apply an ice pack or a couple of ice cubes to the affected area. You can also wrap the ice in a towel to stabilize the temperature. It can be used as much as needed.
3. Wear Sunscreen
Exposure of skin to the sunlight may bring cold sores to the surface. You can prevent this by wearing sunscreen on and around your lips. For this, you can use lip balm on your lips and around the mouth. For better results, opt for a balm with SPF 30 or more.
4. Vitamin C
Vitamin can’t cure cold sores solely, but it does assist the healing process. Being an antioxidant, Vitamin C supports the immune system and the wound healing process. For this, you can include berries, tomatoes, peppers, spinach, and broccoli in your diet.
5. Tea Tree Oil
We all know tea tree oil for its antiviral and antiseptic properties. Tea tree oil can help speed up the process by killing bacteria and drying out the cold sore. Though, no study proves it entirely. Tea tree oil is powerful, so make sure you apply it with a carrier oil or lip balm.
6. Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera gel is very common and is found in most of our houses. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties and being very soothing, aloe vera gel can reduce pain and redness. You can apply it directly to the skin.
7. Use Lysine
This supplement comes in cream or capsule form and is used sometimes to cure cold sores. Lysine activates essential parts of the immune system like T cells to heal the cold sores.
8. Reduce Stress
Stress can cause the herpes virus to come out of dormancy; that is why it is vital to reduce stress from your life to treat cold sores. You can meditate, practice mindfulness activities, and avoid the causes of stress.
You can dab toothpaste on your cold sores to help it dry up faster. However, toothpaste has other ingredients, so make sure there isn’t anything that may irritate the skin.
If these natural remedies aren’t helping you much, you can go for prescription treatments. If you experience outbreaks very often, you can take antiviral medication to prevent the same.
Abreva is a clinically proven cream that is known to cure your cold sores in just 3 days if you use it as soon as you notice symptoms. You can apply the cream where you feel a burning or tingling itching sensation and see blisters to speed up the healing process.
What To Avoid During Cold Sores
- It would be best if you tried to avoid triggers. For instance, if you know a hot day at the beach can trigger the cold sores to come out, try to avoid such situations as much as you can.
- It’s advised not to touch or prick the cold sores, or you’ll end up carrying the virus to other parts of your body. Always wash your hands before touching your face to prevent infection.
The Bottom Line
Many adults have tested positive for the virus that causes cold sores. Most of us don’t show the symptoms, while many deal with recurring breakouts. By keeping a healthy lifestyle, following the remedies as mentioned earlier, and reducing stress from your life, you can keep cold sores at bay. This way, you prevent the pain it causes and the chances of it occurring again.