Here’s How You Can Get Rid of a Cold Sore (Fast!)
Cold sores are common and contagious. Learn how to get rid of these annoying blemishes as fast as you possibly can.
Cold sores: To know them is to loathe them.
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More than half of people in the U.S. have been infected with the virus that causes cold sores. Between 20 and 40% of them will experience the joy that is a cold sore.
If you’re one of them, odds are you know this pattern: A tingling or burning sensation on your lip. A day later, an oozy, fluid-filled blister on your mouth, always at the most inopportune time.
Family medicine physician Sarah Pickering Beers, MD, shares her advice for dealing with this sore spot.
Cold sores are common and mostly harmless. They’re caused by the herpes simplex virus, which spreads easily from person to person.
In some lucky people, the virus might cause a cold sore once or twice and never rear its head again. But for other people, they come back again and again, sometimes several times a year. And that gets old real fast.
“They tend to go away on their own in 10 to 14 days,” says Dr. Beers. “But that doesn’t make them any less annoying.”
Two weeks might as well be an eternity when you have an oozy, scabby sore smack dab in the middle of your face. Here’s what you can do to ease the discomfort and send that cold on its way.
DIY remedies aren’t likely to make a cold sore disappear any faster. But there are things you can do to ease the pain while you’re waiting impatiently for it to heal.
Meanwhile, you don’t want to inflict these sores on others. Skip the make-out sessions until you’ve healed and wash your hands often.
While cold sores are annoying in adults, the virus can be life-threatening in a baby, so take care to steer clear, Dr. Beers advises: “As much as you might want to see your niece or nephew or grandbaby, please don’t shower them with kisses if you have an active cold sore.”