Fever blisters or cold sores are lesions caused by the herpes simplex virus. They usually appear on the lips, although they can inside the mouth and nose as well.
When a person first gets infected with the virus, he or she will have the first outbreak, characterized by one or more fluid-filled blisters. The blisters will burst after several days and the fluid will ooze out, leaving a scab or a crust where the blister used to be. After the crust falls off too, the fever blister or cold sore is healed. Unfortunately, those who have contracted the virus are likely to have future outbreaks, some more and some less frequently, throughout the life. This is because, for now, there is no cure that will expel or destroy the virus. However, fever blisters themselves can be managed with home remedies and over-the-counter solutions that will make them less painful and itchy and make them heal faster.
Treatment for fever blisters on lips
Aloe vera is one of the nature’s best remedies for many ailments, including fever blisters. Its juice can be squeezed directly from a cut leaf onto the blister but those who do not have an aloe vera plant at hand can also use gels and creams containing the extract of this plant. Like many other remedies for fever blisters, aloe vera is best if used as early as possible, before an actual blister appears and fills with fluid.
Zinc sulfate creams, preferably .01 to 0.25 percent strength, can also be applied several times a day. Zinc will help the sore heal and it will also reduce the chance of recurrence.
Various essential oils with mild antiviral and healing properties can be used. Chamomile, lemon balm, lavender or rose oil should me mixed with a carrier oil, such as jojoba, and applied to the fever blister several times a day.
Many people who frequently suffer from fever blisters opt for oral antiviral drugs, such as Zovirax, Famvir and Valtrex. These should be used in the initial stages, when the tingling or burning starts, otherwise they may not be very effective.
Fever blisters and herpes virus in general is associated with the intake of lysine and arginine. During outbreaks, it is recommended to cut down on arginine and to increase the intake of lysine, whether in form of supplements or through lysine-rich foods.
Tannic acid is an ingredient found in several medications for fever blisters. This ingredient comes from tea and, logically, it can be very helpful to simply press a wet teabag onto the fever blister and to hold it for a few minutes.