Cold Sores

Cold sores ( herpes labialis), sometimes called fever blisters, are clusters of small blisters on the lip and outer edge of the mouth. It is different from a canker sore, which appears inside the mouth. The skin around the blisters is often red and inflamed . The blisters can break open, weep a clear fluid, and then scab over after a few days. Complete healing may take 7 to 10 days.

Cold sores are extremely common – it is estimated that, in the United States,
80%-90% of the population has been infected by the cold sore virus by the time they are 50 years old. Only about 30% of those infected with the virus actually ever get a cold sore.

Factors that can activate a cold sore or fever blister

  • infections (i.e. colds) cold sores
  • over exposure to sunlight
  • fever
  • refined sugars
  • stress
  • fatigue
  • hormonal changes
  • Trauma, such as shaving, cuts, dental work, facial/cosmetic surgery

Symptoms and stages of cold sores
  • 1) Tingling discomfort or itching
  • 2) Redness and swelling
  • 3) Eruption of lesion
  • 4) Oozing of lesion
  • 5) Lesion dries and forms a thin yellowish scab


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