• Abraham The Pharmacist

Cold Sores | How To Treat A Cold Sore | How To Prevent Cold Sores | How To Get Rid Cold Sore (2018)


How To Treat Cold Sores | How To Stop Getting Cold Sores | How To Prevent A Cold Sore When You Feel It Coming | Cold Sore Treatments


Hey guys! This weeks video is about cold sores, how to prevent them and how to try and treat them.


I couldn't find any information to clinically prove the effectiveness of some cold sore remedies seen online like distilled vinegar, witch hazel and alcohol, so I can't recommend them. But feel free to leave a comment if you've tried them to let us know how effective they were.



WHAT ARE COLD SORES:

About 1 in 5 people in the UK have recurring cold sores. Cold sores usually resolve on their own without treatment in 7-10 days.


Cold sores, also known as fever blisters or oral herpes, are very common. They can be easy to recognise as they usually appear as red bumps or blisters around the lips and mouth.


Cold sores are caused by herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1), the oral form of the virus. In fact, 67% of the world population under age 50 has HSV-1 because it is so contagious Once you are infected, the virus never leaves your body. Most people aren’t exactly sure when they first encountered the virus. It’s usually contracted in early childhood where it may not appear as a visible cold sore.



HOW DO COLD SORES SPREAD:

The oral herpes virus is spread through direct skin-to-skin contact. It is even contagious when you can’t see a cold sore. Most people first contract the cold sore virus (HSV-1) when they are very young, usually by skin-to-skin contact with an adult carrying the virus. The virus can spread in various ways: through kissing, or by sharing objects like toothbrushes, water bottles, drinking glasses, and silverware. It is also possible to spread the virus from the mouth to the genitals, eyes, and other parts of the body.



COLD SORE TRIGGERS WHICH MAY BE PREVENTED:

Not everyones cold sores are triggered by the same thing, but these triggers are the ones which could be avoided to prevent a cold sore attack.


• Stress can wear down your immune system, giving that dormant cold sore a chance to launch a sneak attack. Instead, when you feel stressed, breathe deeply and relax. Here’s a look at some relaxation techniques that can help you take it easy -https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/understanding-stress/


• Being tired can make you vulnerable to cold sores. Like stress and illness, fatigue can zap your immune system, making you easy prey for a cold sore outbreak. Getting rest is key. Link to my video to help you get a better night sleep.


• If you find that sunlight triggers your cold sores, try using sunscreen lip balm (SPF 15 or more) before going out into bright sunlight. This has been found to prevent some bouts of cold sores in some people. Do not share lip balms with other people if you have cold sores.


• Prevent chapped lips in the cold by using a hydrating lip balm.



COLD SORE TREATMENT:

Aciclovir can be bought over-the-counter (OTC) at pharmacies. This does not kill the virus but prevents the virus from multiplying. It has little effect on existing blisters but may prevent them from becoming worse.


The cream may provide some protection against cold sores caused by sunlight if it is used before exposure. If you use an antiviral cream as soon as symptoms start then the cold sore may not last as long as usual and may be less severe. There is debate as to how well the cream works. Aciclovir has to be applied five times per day for five days.



WHEN TO SEE YOUR GP:

You should see your GP if you are unsure of the diagnosis, or if the cold sores are not resolving after a week or so. If you have a poor immune system (you are an immunocompromised person) and develop possible cold sores, you should see your GP. You may need tests to confirm the virus, and/or oral antiviral medicines.




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About Me:

Prescribing Media Pharmacist | Bringing Science Through New Film Every Monday | Extreme Optimist

I'm a British - Persian - Iranian prescribing media pharmacist who loves science, making videos and helping people. I work in both GP surgeries and community pharmacy.



Disclaimer:

This video is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. Abraham The Pharmacist has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Always consult a doctor or other healthcare professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions.

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