Cold sores usually begin life as a small tingle or prickly sensation on the upper or lower lip (Herpes labialis) and this sensation may become more intense as the sore matures. The usually get bigger and angrier looking, but over a couple of days, the prickly/burning/uncomfortable sensation dissipates. At this stage, the blister may have developed a scab and the pain only occurs through direct contact such as when eating or brushing teeth.
During its life (which may be up to two weeks) the cold sore will not only cause you to become that bit more self conscious but it can lead to you trying creams and ointments to try and get rid of the unsightly blister.
Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus. Oral herpes is the most common type of infection and genital herpes is the second most common manifestation of the herpes virus.
Cold Sore Treatment
Creams are popular in the treatment of cold sores. They can be applied regularly and fairly easily. Lemon Balm cream is extremely popular as it contains many natural chemicals that are ideal at combatting viral infections. The presence of tannins in the lemon balm plant give it antiviral properties and in addition terpenes are present, which can kill bacteria, numb the painful tissue and provide a soothing sensation, synonymous with the lemon balm herb.
To use lemon balm cream, you should dab the lemon balm cream on the cold sore site at the first indication of an outbreak. When a tingling, burning, itching sensation arises and you are prone to outbreaks it is best to act quickly and apply the lemon balm cream. 3-4 times per day or every few hours is recommended. Be careful to wash you hands between applications to minimise the risk of cross contamination.
After applying regularly, the cold should be restricted in it’s growth and you can drastically reduce the length of the outbreak. Also, early and regular treatment will reduce the discomfort of a cold sore for its duration. Increasing the frequency of showers can moisten the sore and aid cell repair. Facial spa treatments can also be effective.
As cold sores are the product of a virus, it is important to consider hygiene over the course of the outbreak. Avoid contaminated creams and other treatments and always wash hands thoroughly after any contact with the sore.
If you experience abnormally regular cold sores consult your doctor as you may be lacking the right nutrition in your diet or you may have an immune disorder.