Cold Sore Treatment

Why the cold sore treatment does really matter?

Before we start our research about the best cold sore treatment, let’s start our analysis but define the cold sore and what it is means.

  1. (The oral also called cold sores), and it is an infectious disease caused by a virus (DNA virus) called herpes simplex virus type I (HSV1), note that the herpes simplex virus type II (HSV2) may also occasionally be responsible for oral herpes even though it usually causes genital herpes.
  2. Herpes labialis is an infectious disease that turns out to be very contagious in direct contact with the lesions of one person to another or when saliva secretions (as droplets).
  3. Note that the virus remains “hidden” at the lurking in the lymph at the base of the neck and can reappear at any time.

What is the cold sore or oral herpes?

Oral herpes is an infectious disease commonplace, but recurrent and contagious. Herpes, also called “herpes simplex” which is a viral infection that occurs mainly in two forms: oral herpes and genital herpes. Herpes is a contagious disease and recurrent, that is to say, it comes into active phase subsides, then may reappear again, and this throughout the lives of people who are infected. Oral herpes is caused by the herpes simplex virus 1. It mainly affects the upper body and especially the face.

Cold sore treatment

The herpes labialis statistics

  1. An estimated 70 to 90% (90% in Switzerland and USA) of adults worldwide are infected with herpes virus HSV-1, but without the disease manifests itself in all cases, in fact the cold sore develops in only about 10% of people (see below causes cold sores to understand why).
  2. A study showed that 50% of children have contracted the virus of cold sores before the age of 12 years. Children have a habit of putting objects in their mouths including drinking from the glass of other people (an adult).
  3. In France it is estimated that over 7 million people (over 10% of the population) are affected by cold sores.
  4. The disease in its symptoms (visible and painful), usually occurs in the form of thrust 4-6 times a year.
  5. As can be seen from these figures, herpes labialis is truly one of the most common infectious diseases worldwide.

What causes the cold sore?

Herpes labialis is caused by a virus (HSV1 usually) and is transmitted by direct contact between two people. You should know that much of the population (90%) is the virus of cold sores (HSV 1) but only a portion (approximately 10%) develops the disease. Genetics explain this difference between individuals in the appearance or not of herpes labialis (see below for details).

Here are the most obvious reasons (symptoms) for the cold sores problem

There are so many reasons that may cause the cold sores (mouth sores) but also there are some critical reasons that cause the cold sore problem and here are the most known reasons. Fever, stress, anxiety, fatigue, dust, extreme temperatures (hot or cold), prolonged exposure to sunlight, influenza, menstruation, allergies as well as some foods are factors that favor herpes outbreaks. Oral herpes is spread when someone kisses someone who has a “cold sore” or sharing utensils or towels her.

In general, early signs of a herpes outbreak can be recognized by the tingling or burning sensation around the mouth. It occurs mostly in the lesions around the mouth, commonly called “cold sores” or “fever blisters”. These lesions may also appear on the gums, around the nostrils and into the roof of the mouth and lead to an infection called “canker sore”. These manifestations of herpes, however, are rarer.

What causes cold sores

Why only a few part of the population have cold sores?

In October 2011 American researchers from the Universities of Utah School of Medicine in Salt Lake City and the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester have shown that the reason is probably based on genetics. Indeed, these researchers showed that the C21 or f91 gene on chromosome 21 variants present different and these differences in this gene explain why some people develop the disease with symptoms and others have no symptoms while they are also carriers of virus.

Once the virus is acquired, some factors may favor its appearance, these examples are:

  1. The sun’s radiation, especially UVB, The sun is responsible for 25% of recurrent herpes labialis.
  2. Nervous or mental problems such as stress (work overload,) or an overload of emotions
  3. Infectious diseases such as: flu, a cold, a cold
  4. Fever (often due to a weakened immune system)
  5. Fatigue (also after a jet lag or jet lag and the return from vacation,)
  6. Cold (low temperatures)
  7. Wounds or injuries, particularly at the mouth (after sun exposure and the appearance of bulb)
  8. A weak immune system, for example when very tired or diseases of the immune system (AIDS,).
  9. The period (menstruation) and pregnancy (hormonal changes in general)

When you should consult a doctor about the cold sores and it’s treatment

In general, it is not useful. This effect disappears most often by itself, after ten to fifteen days. Drugs are most often ineffectively. A doctor visit is recommended, however if your strength was greatly weakened (for example after a prolonged illness). The virus may indeed be the cause of complications. And contact your doctor if your cold sores became lodged in the eye or if they do not heal spontaneously. In the latter case, it may be the sign of a bacterial infection. Treatment is recommended to avoid scarring. (See home remedies for cold sores)

A useful preventive: Try to recognize the causes of cold sores, which vary from person to person. You can then take the necessary precautions. For example, if the cold sores appear at home after sun exposure, use a lip balm containing a UV filter.

It is advisable to consult a doctor if you have cold sore in the next cases:

  1. Cold sores is accompanied by high fever
  2. When the eye area is affected
  3. In case of cold sores extending to other parts of the lips
  4. When the cold sore develops during pregnancy

Important Note: This list is not exhaustive, for any suspicious symptoms see your doctor. But if it the first time to have this problem, probably  you don’t have to worry but if the problem happens again and again and more and more, then you have to take steps to get rid of the cold sore fast.

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