If you have ever had a cold sore, you know that you would do anything to have it heal and be over with as quickly as possible.
And, there may be a few things that you can do to ensure the fastest possible healing time.
In this article, we will cover a few tips and over-the-counter or prescription items you can try to get that cold sore packing.
Lysine, or L-Lysine, is a necessary amino acid and a building block of protein.
Some studies indicate that supplementing with Lysine during a cold sore outbreak may help speed recovery and suppress recurrence.
Oral doses of 1000mg-3000mg daily are commonly used in studies.
If you have a cold sore you need to be gone asap, step into your garden and clip off some of your decorative aloe vera plant.
One study showed that aloe vera was active against viruses, and specifically HSV-1, in a laboratory setting.
Dabbing a bit of the soothing green gel on the cold sore a few times daily may help kick that cold sore to the curb quicker.
Cold sores aren’t just unsightly - they can really hurt as well.
Help keep your mind off the healing sore by taking acetaminophen or ibuprofen over the course of the sore.
This won’t speed up your healing time, but it will help you go on with your day and help prevent absentminded touching, picking, or itching of the wound.
Apply a cold compress to the cold sore throughout the day to help relieve pain, redness, and swelling.
Stay away from warm compresses for cold sores because that may ramp up the inflammation.
While cold sores may not heal quicker because of cold compresses, it will likely make the area feel more comfortable and look less obvious by taking some of the redness out of the sore.
Picking at or touching a cold sore may increase the irritation and make the time it sticks around longer.
Plus, you could accidentally spread the sore and have to start all over again with healing multiple sores instead of just one.
If you do have to touch your cold sore to apply medication, wash your hands thoroughly afterward to avoid spreading the virus to yourself or to others.
While your cold sore is healing, get a good hydrating lip balm to apply to the surrounding areas.
Make sure the lip balm has some built-in SPF to protect the healing sore from getting worse in the sun and keep the lips healthy too.
Even after the cold sore has healed, you will want to switch to a lip balm with sunscreen, since sun exposure to the area can sometimes be a trigger for future outbreaks.
Zinc Oxide/glycine cream can be found over the counter in most pharmacies, and studies show apply this directly to the sore may help speed up healing time.
One study had participants apply a zinc oxide cream to the cold sore every 2 hours and found that the cold sore went away about 1 and ½ days sooner than the placebo group.
This study ensured that the patients started applying the treatment within 24 hours of the first sign of a cold sore, so starting the application right at the start may be key.
Certain medications have been found to either help reduce the amount of time the cold sore sticks around or reduce the frequency of recurrences.
These are antiviral medications including:
Valacyclovir is one of the most commonly prescribed medications for reducing the length of time that you have an active cold sore.
Studies show that taking 2 doses of valacyclovir 12 hours apart at the first sign of a cold sore can help reduce the healing time by about 1 day.
Curious if Valacyclovir may be a good option to keep on hand for your cold sore outbreaks?
Schedule an online visit with our doctors today. If you are a good candidate for Valacyclovir therapy, your prescription medication can be shipped
directly to your front door.