However, knowing how to handle the outbreak matters. This article will guide you on how to get rid of a cold sore fast, through the use of toothpaste on the cold sores, natural healing oils, and antibiotics.
Cold sores, also known as fever blisters, are painful lesions that develop mainly on the face, nose or inside the mouth, such as oral herpes. It is a contagious viral infection caused by the herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV- 1).
Fever blisters are contagious and can spread via skin to skin contact with an infected person. It leaves an embarrassing scar on the affected area which takes a few weeks to heal completely.
However, there is still a way out, below is a step-by-step guide on:
How to get rid of a cold sore overnight
Cold sore is a viral disease, it has no cure. If you notice a burning sensation on your lips or face, which later burst to a fever blister, worry not, instead follow these steps to get rid of it forever.
1. Strengthen your immune system: Having a strong immune system is the first step to getting rid of a cold sore and its outbreak.
A cold sore outbreak affects most people with a weak immune system and is often triggered by stress. Avoid stress, eat a nutrient-dense diet and immune-boosting herbs like moringa, ginger, garlic, probiotics, and vitamins to boost your immune system.
2. Lemon balm oil for cold sores: Get lemon balm oil and rub it on the blisters. Lemon oil is an antimicrobial, it helps clear the herpes virus fast. (4)
3. Eat L–Lysine rich foods: L-lysine is an amino acid used for protein synthesis. It also reduces the severity, healing time and recurrence of a cold sore. Eat diets like grass-fed beef, poultry, pork, and cheese rich in amino acids. (5).
4. Apply aloe vera gel on the sores
Aloe Vera gels are used in treating herpes labialis and other skin problems. It contains antioxidant compounds, fatty acids, minerals, enzymes and hormones which facilitates the healing of sores. Apply the gel with a cotton swab on the sores to reduce pain and speed up the healing process
5. Use ice or a cool compress: To facilitate your herpes labialis healing, try holding a cool, damp cloth against the sores. This can help make the sore less red and crusty and hasten their healing process.
According to Harvard Medical School, placing a cube of ice in a place you suspect a blister outbreak may prevent the full-blown lesion from developing, and if the sore later appears, it may go away faster.
The Journal of Professional Nursing also stressed that keeping the sore hydrated by sucking on ice may prevent it from drying, cracking and transforming into a secondary infection
6. Use coconut oil: Coconut oil is essential for canker sore treatment. It is antimicrobial and contains lauric and oleic acid. These compounds help to trash out fever blisters without delay. Apply the oil on the affected area and repeat it continuously for an hour interval.
7. Use Peppermint Essential Oil on the blisters
Peppermint oil has a high virucidal effect on cold sores, this makes it one of the best oils you can use to get rid of cold sores forever. Reports have it that peppermint oil controls both HSV-1 and HSV- 2.
Applying the oil regularly at the early stage of the lesion will fasten the healing process. (7)
8. Make use of turmeric: Turmeric is a medicinal plant with anti-inflammatory properties.
It contains curcumin which boosts the immune system to fight germs including the herpes virus.
How to get rid of a cold sore forever
According to Danielle Marsay’s report, the cold sore has plagued her for two years. The red tingling sores reappear on the right-hand side of her mouth every two months, disrupting her career as a part-time model.
The sore do last up to a week and feels horrible, she laments.
A few months ago, Danielle tried a new herbal ointment ‘ViraMedx’ that broke the jinx. The itching and discomfort went away within a few minutes, she narrated. After a day, the cold sore had shrunk to half its size, and a day later the skin had healed completely.
The lotion is made from echinacea and other botanical extracts. Even though there is no way to get rid of a viral infection once you’re infected, a recent trial with ViraMedx at the University of Chicago showed the complete eradication of the herpes simplex virus from the cultured human cells.
Meryl Squires, the director of Merax Healthcare Products, also reported that in their recent study of 70 patients, tingling symptoms disappeared within 4- 6 minutes while the healing of the scab took about 3 to 4 days, says the American manufacturer.
And contrary to other medicated creams containing anti-viral agent ‘acyclovir’, which is always less effective, especially when blisters have developed, ViraMedx’s effectiveness lies in the combination of botanical extracts that work together to kill the herpes virus.
How to get rid of a cold sore in the mouth
Cold sores can develop both outside and in the mouth and getting rid of blisters inside the mouth is sometimes challenging because of the contagious nature of the virus. However, there are still some ways out.
- Use antiviral drugs: The use of anti-viral drugs like acyclovir, famciclovir, and valacyclovir before the outbreak of the sores can facilitate the healing process or even prevent the blisters from appearing. Using anti-viral drugs immediately you notice symptoms to stop them from developing. (9)
- Get a New Toothbrush: The toothbrush you used during the cold sore outbreak may still harbour the virus and may lead to recurrence if you use it again. It is better to change it to avoid recurrence.
- Apply Vanilla extract: A pure vanilla extract is used as a home remedy for cold sore treatment because of its effectiveness. The anti-inflammatory properties and high levels of alcohol in them help to dry out cold sores in one day.
Soak cotton wool with vanilla oil and hold it in the affected area. Do it at least four times a day.
- Use tea tree oil: Tea tree oil works effectively for cold sores treatment. It has both antiviral and antibacterial properties that can help kill the blisters quickly.
- Garlic: Crush some cloves of garlic and rub on the affected area or you chew it and sieve the fluids for optimum result. Garlic extracts are antimicrobials with at least 33 sulfur compounds like allicin, alliin, ajoene, etc. And about 17 amino acids which make it an excellent antimicrobial plant, are used as cold sore medicine. Garlic also helps to reduce swelling and also facilitates healing.
Use Toothpaste on the cold sore
Using toothpaste as a cold sore home remedy has yielded enormous success. This is because of the active ingredient ‘sodium lauryl sulfate’ (SLS) in it. According to studies, sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) suppresses the activity of the virus.
The findings showed that applying toothpaste to a cold sore at an early stage helps it heal faster and reduces the risk of skin irritation.
Frequently asked questions about cold sores
How do you get a cold sore?
You can get a cold sore by having direct contact with someone with the lesion. This may be through kissing, hugging, anal sex or any other form. Most carriers got infected during their childhood because of physical contact.
The most difficult aspect of it is that the carrier may even spread the virus with no symptoms on their face or body.
What causes a cold sore?
Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV- 1). There are 2 types of herpes simplex virus, the HSV-1 which causes cold sores and the HSV-2 that causes genital herpes. The lesions caused by both viruses are similar, and HSV-1 can also cause HSV-2 infection. (12)
Is cold sore contagious?
Yes, cold sores are contagious from the first day you notice the symptoms on your body. It is most contagious when the sores have ruptured with fluids coming out of it.
However, the blisters will cease to be contagious once the sores have healed completely. But note that it can be passed via saliva from the carrier to a healthy person even when the carrier is healthy.
How long does cold sore last?
Cold sores last about 2 weeks from the day you noticed the first symptoms. However, you should avoid spraying its fluid to other parts of the body. And also remember that an infected person remains a carrier for life. (10)
What are the first signs of a cold sore?
The first signs of a cold sore are
- Burning sensation
- Painful blisters in the affected area.
- Swelling of the affected area
- Body pain.
What is the difference between cold sores and canker sores?
The difference between cold sores and canker sores is that cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus 1 while canker sores are mouth ulcers caused by an injury you inflict in your mouth, nutrient deficiencies, hormonal imbalance, oral microbiome imbalance and by using oral hygiene products that contain Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS).
How to prevent a cold sore outbreak
The herpes virus outbreak can be prevented by staying away from the carrier when the sore is active.
Below are some ways you can prevent a burst of cold sores.
- Minimize body contact with others, especially when a cold sore is active.
- Don’t share clothing materials or toothbrushes with others.
- Avoid kissing, oral or sexual intercourse.
- Wash your hands regularly to lower your chances of being infected.
- Avoid sharing drinks, cups, and others with strangers.
Can a pimple turn into a cold sore?
No, pimples can not turn into a cold sore. Pimples are formed when the skin pores become clogged with sebum and dead skin cells. Whereas cold sores are a result of a viral infection. However, they have similar symptoms at the initial stage.
What is the best treatment for a cold sore?
Famciclovir (famir), Acyclovir (Zovirax), Penciclovir (Denavir) and Valacyclovir (Valtrex) remain the best medicines for cold sores. These drugs perform better if used within 48 hours after the first symptoms.
Valtrex is more reliable because it is easily absorbed by the body, but it is the most expensive among them. However, your doctor or nurses shall be the one to choose the best pills that will suit you.
A cold sore is a viral disease, it has no cure. The best treatment for a cold sore now is prevention. Stay away from all the causes. For those that are already affected, follow the up listed procedure for cold sore treatment.