Incredible, but true – Cold sores and fever blisters have been a world-wide epidemic since before Christ. The World Health Organization estimates that nearly 90% of earth’s population is infected with the cold sore virus today.
Outbreaks of cold sores or fever blisters are caused by the replication process of the herpes simplex virus. Both strains – type 1 and the type 2 – cause identical sores. Many viruses disappear over time but the cold sore virus will be with you for life.
The good news – although with you a lifetime, the cold sore virus is normally asleep. It hides in your nerve cells near the initial infection. 35 people out of a 100 that carry the herpes virus will not get one outbreak in a lifetime. The other 65 of us will get a cold sore at least once every 8.4 months.
Cold sores and fever blisters are highly contagious. Not only must you be careful not to infect someone else, but you should be extra cautious not to re-infect another spot on your own body. Wherever the virus can get through the skin, it will form a new cold sore colony there.
Often you will see people with multiple sores around the mouth. These cold sores are spread from lack of properly treating the original sore. Also, every caution must be used to avoid getting the cold sore virus in the eyes. This usually causes vision loss with non-reversible damage to the cornea.
Responsible care of your cold sore is very simple and will greatly reduce the chance of creating new sores on yourself or your family. Never touch the sore with your bare fingers, no matter how much it itches. A cold sore is most contagious from the initial tingling until totally healed.
Use throw-away cotton balls, swabs, tissue or paper towels to continually cleanse the sore with alcohol or hydrogen peroxide. This will greatly reduce the virus count of the wound and will help keep your fingers sterile. Use hand sanitizing gel frequently, even if you did not think you touched the wound.
Prevention of cold sores and fever blisters, of course, is the ideal solution. Then the risk of spreading is almost zero. Best of all, you do not have to suffer the pain and embarrassment in public. Let us take a look at a couple really easy ways to prevent them that have proven to work well.
First and foremost, if you are prone to getting cold sores, it would be wise to take a good quality vitamin supplement on a daily basis. This not only reduces the effects of cold sore causing stress, but greatly enhances your immune system.
One extremely popular treatment for cold sores is the amino acid lysine – using about 3000 milligrams spread out during the day. Between cold sores, as a preventative, many people take one capsule (500 milligrams) per day.
Keep in mind that the cause of all cold sores and fever blisters is the extremely contagious virus called herpes simplex. Please use every caution to prevent further spreading to loved ones and to other parts of your body – especially your eyes.
Finally, you should use hydrogen peroxide or alcohol soaked cotton balls or tissues to continually cleanse and disinfect the sore. Also, taking a regular vitamin supplement will help reduce your stress, keep your immune system super strong, and ultimately help prevent cold sores and fever blisters.