Cold Sore Treatment - What Are the Treatment Options and How Effective Are They
There's plenty of different treatments out there for cold sores (Herpes Simplex), including prescription, over the counter (OTC), as well as home treatments for cold sores.
First, we're going to go over some of the basics about cold sores, like what causes them and where it comes from, and then I'm going to tell you about some of the available treatment options and which one was the most effective for me.
Basics About Cold Sores
The Herpes Simplex Type 1 virus is what actually causes the cold sores you keep getting--it can never be permanently killed or 'cured' per se because it remains in your nervous system forever. The only way to catch it is from someone else who has an active outbreak--someone you kissed or someone who's toothbrush, razor, towel etc. you used at some point while they had an active outbreak.
After you've been initially infected, you'll get your first active outbreak at some point, but keep in mind that this first outbreak when you first realize you've caught the virus may be months or years after you were initially infected so it can be impossible to figure out when, how, where, and from who you caught it. Stress is the basic trigger for an outbreak, stress on the body, and that can come in the form of excessive sunlight, cold dry weather, menstruation, sickness, or psychological stress such as work-related stress.
Cold Sore Treatment
A cold sore will normally go away on its own in approximately 7-10 days; a topical lotion such as lidocaine or Zilactin (benzoyl alcohol) will help relieve the severity of your symptoms to some degree (it varies from person to person and the only way to find out is to experiment).
Antiviral medications may somewhat shorten the duration of your outbreak and decrease your pain, if started early enough. If you experience frequent outbreaks, you can ask your doctor to prescribe an antiviral as a cold sore treatment or to help prevent outbreaks before they occur.
Your doctor can prescribe certain prescription anti-viral medications for you that may or may not shorten the duration of the outbreak and decrease the severity of your symptoms if started early enough. There are also preventative medications and home remedies such as the one below that can help to stop an outbreak before it happens, but this is only really relevant if you're getting outbreaks on a very regular basis and most cold sore sufferers will go months or years between outbreaks.
Home Treatments and Remedies for Cold Sores:
A home remedy for cold sore or cold sore home treatments: these are too numerous to mention, and many of them simply do not work. My own experience on home remedies for cold sores is with something concocted by a close friend of mine, and even though I've never been big on home remedies I must say that this cold sore home treatment worked both times for me, and even more impressive is I've seen it work on about 25 other people she's tried it on, consistently!
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