When you are suffering with a cold sore the question you want answered more than any other is what cold sore treatment is most effective? The answer will depend on your personal preference and a few other factors.
A first outbreak can be especially painful and will many times call for medical treatment. When you first encounter HSV, you may become feverish and have blisters in and around the mouth. This can call for a more aggressive treatment.
Subsequent outbreaks will not be as severe; however, prescription treatments are very effective in treating cold sores especially when caught early. Below are the three prescription treatments most frequently prescribed:
– Denavir (generic name penciclovir) this is an antiviral ointment that interferes with the virus’s ability to replicate. It is not considered a cure but simply a mechanism by which to manage the effects and shorten the duration. Recommended dosing is application every two hours for up to four days or roughly nine times per 24-hour period.
– Zovirax This is a cream similar in nature to Denavir, however, the manufacturer claims it is more convenient and works in fewer doses. The recommendation is topical application five times per day.
– Acyclovir is an antiviral drug used to treat a host of viral infections. Including genital herpes and shingles. This drug can be administered orally or in an ointment to be applied to the affected area.
There are times when medical treatment is either unavailable or unwanted. In these cases, a few home remedies have been found to be effective.
– Ice, applying ice to the affected area in the early stages will stifle the cold sores ability and ease the side effects of pain and itching. Place ice on the area for a few minutes every couple of hours.
– Tea bag, tea contains an antiviral property called tannic acid. Many over the counter treatments contain this acid, moisten a black tea bag, and place on the area during the tingle stage for a few minutes every hour. You can also place a warm tea beg on the area for up to 30 minutes.
– Lysine, studies are not conclusive on this remedy but some preliminary research has shown that the correct mg dosage can greatly speed recovery time. This has not been approved by the FDA and should be used on the advice of competent medical professionals.
Perhaps the best treatment of all is prevention. Cold sores can appear for seemingly no reason at all. However, professionals agree that certain criteria make an outbreak more likely. The herpes virus stays dormant in your system indefinitely and rises to the surface when the body is stressed. Illnesses and emotional stress are all contributors the waking the virus that will form a cold sore. Try to keep yourself from becoming run down and practice relaxation techniques to eliminate stress. Above all keep, any infected area clean and be diligent to prevent the spread. Hand washing and good general hygiene will go a long way in this.