Do you or someone in your immediate family occasionally suffer from cold sores? By age 50, an estimated 80-90% of adults are infected with the virus that causes cold sores. Often called fever blisters, this common ailment is nothing serious; but it is sometimes painful and embarrassing.
Cold sores often occur during a viral illness, like a cold. Cold sores are actually small clusters of blisters that usually form around the mouth or on the lips. The herpes simplex virus is the cause of these sores, although a person can be infected and never have an outbreak or show any symptoms at all. Factors that can trigger a cold sore outbreak include stress, fever, and trauma to the mouth area, like sunburn or a surgical procedure.
To reduce the onset of cold cores:
- Try to maintain a moderate to low stress level.
- Take extra precautions during cold and flu season not to get sick.
- Diligently use lip balm and sunscreen on your face daily.
- Avoid sharing things like razors, eating utensils, and lip balm with a person with a cold sore.
- Prescription pills can be effective in preventing outbreaks. Discuss this option with Dr. Laura or Dr. John.
If you have any questions about treatment or prevention of cold sores, we would love to help you, please do not hesitate to contact our office.