cold sore treatment and prevention

Many people suffer from cold sores in winter, for most it starts with that tell tale tingle and before you know it’s a full on blister which can be throbbing and extremely painful.


Cold sores occur as result of exposure to the herpes simplex virus, which lies dormant in the system until it is triggered. Stress is a very common trigger, along with a compromised immune system, certain foods, trauma, viral infections or even too much sunlight.


One of the most important factors in treating cold sores is to act fast, as soon as you feel that tingle take action. Some people swear by applying an ice cube to the site of the tingle which may stop the old sore developing or others recommend making a cup of Earl Grey Tea and applying the slightly cooled tea bag to the affected area. The heat increases circulation, allowing all of your body’s natural healing techniques to work more quickly.  Antioxidants in the tea help your body to fight the virus, and the bergamot can help to reduce the swelling.


Improving the immune system is crucial to the prevention and control of cold sores.  As well as that, some people find a diet high in the amino acid lysine and low in Arginine (herpes virus needs this amino acid in order to replicate) beneficial for treating cold sores.  Lysine rich foods include vegetables, legumes, fish, sprouts and dairy products. Foods containing Arginine to avoid are chocolate, coffee, nuts, seeds, almonds and other nuts.


You can strengthen your system and reduce your chances of breaking out in cold sores by taking a therapeutic dose of vitamin C, Lamberts make a gentle Vitamin C supplement which if taken during a cold sore outbreak helps to promote healing.


Lysine supplements help to prevent and treat cold sores, so if you are prone to cold sores, this is definitely something to take throughout the winter months.


If sunlight triggers cold sores always use a lip balm containing SPF, We love Annemarie Borlind Sun Lip Balm which contains SPF 20 and healing plant waxes to prevent further outbreaks.