How to Get Rid of a Cold Sore in 24 Hours?

Cold sores, also called oral herpes or fever blisters, are small blisters filled with liquid that show up on or around your lips. They are caused by a virus called herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), which spreads when you touch infected skin or saliva.

Once you get this virus, you have it forever. It can stay quiet for a while but might come back later. While there’s no cure for cold sores, there are treatments that can help you feel better and heal faster when you have an outbreak.

What are Cold Sores?

Cold sores or fever blisters are small, painful blisters that can show up near your mouth, face, or nose. They are mostly caused by viruses like herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV 1) and sometimes by herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV 2).

These blisters are common and usually get better on their own in about a week or two. They start as blisters on your lips or around your mouth, and sometimes inside your mouth. Then they become painful sores. The blisters fill with fluid, scab over, and eventually go away.

There’s no cure for cold sores, but your doctor can give you medicines like antiviral tablets or creams to help them heal faster.

What are the Symptoms of Cold Sores?

When someone gets their first cold sore, the symptoms are usually worse. Here are the signs of cold sores:

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1. At first, you might feel tingling, itching, or a burning feeling around your lips.

2. Then, red, swollen, and painful blisters start appearing in that area.

3. After a couple of days, the blisters break open and ooze clear or yellowish fluid. This is called the “weeping phase.”

4. Over the next few days, the blisters crust over and form scabs. The skin might crack or bleed as it heals.

5. Finally, the scabs fall off, leaving slightly pink or reddish skin for a few days.

Sometimes, you might also have a fever, a sore throat, or body aches along with cold sores.

What are Medicated Treatment for Cold Sores?

While there’s no quick fix for a cold sore, you have options to ease the pain and help it heal faster:

1. Prescription Antiviral Drugs: These are the best way to clear up a cold sore quickly. They can start working right away, and most people feel better in 2-3 days. Medicines like Acyclovir, Valacyclovir, Famciclovir, or Penciclovir can be taken as pills or applied directly to the sores.

2. Over-the-Counter Medications (OTC): While not as strong as prescriptions, they can still help. Docosanol (Abreva) is an antiviral that can heal sores in 2-4 days. Pain relievers like Lidocaine and benzocaine (Orajel) can ease the pain instantly.

3. Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers: These won’t make the sore go away faster, but they can reduce the pain. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or Ibuprofen (Advil) can help with discomfort.

It’s also smart to consult a healthcare provider before trying any new treatments to understand possible side effects and precautions.

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What are Home remedies for Cold Sores?

Here are some simple ways to ease cold sore symptoms at home:

1. Cold Compress: Put a cold, damp cloth or ice pack on the sore for 10 minutes, three times a day. This can help with pain and reduce redness, but don’t leave it on for too long to avoid skin irritation.

2. Propolis: It’s a substance from bees that can fight the virus causing cold sores. You can find it in creams or gels. It might heal sores in about 8 days, but be cautious as it can irritate some people’s skin.

3. Lemon Balm: This herb has antioxidants that might help fight the virus. Applying lemon balm gel or oil on the sore can soothe it and help it heal, but more research is needed to know how well it works.

What are Prevention from Cold Sore?

Here are simple ways to lower the chances of cold sore outbreaks if you have the herpes simplex 1 virus (HSV-1):

1. Keep Lips Moisturized: Use lip balms to keep your lips moist. This prevents scabs from cracking and spreading the sore.

2. Protect from Sun: Use creams with zinc oxide or lip balms with SPF to shield your lips from the sun. This stops them from drying out and cracking.

3. Take Lysine Supplements: These pills or creams can prevent outbreaks and speed up healing.

4. Don’t Share Personal Items: Since the virus spreads through saliva, avoid sharing lip balms or toothbrushes during outbreaks. Disinfect or get new items after the sore is gone.

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5. Manage Stress: Stress can trigger outbreaks. Try relaxation techniques like deep breathing or meditation to lower stress levels and reduce the risk of outbreaks.

Frequently asked Questions

Q1: What kills a cold sore fast?

A1: Prescription antiviral medications like Acyclovir or Valacyclovir can help kill cold sores quickly if taken at the first sign of an outbreak. Over-the-counter options like Docosanol (Abreva) can also speed up healing when applied early.

Q2: How do you get rid of a cold sore in one night?

A2: Getting rid of a cold sore overnight is unlikely, but you can speed up healing. Apply an over-the-counter antiviral cream like Docosanol (Abreva) or a topical solution containing benzyl alcohol before bed. Also, take oral antiviral medication prescribed by your doctor and keep the area clean and moisturized.

Q3: Can cold sore heal in 2 days?

A3: Cold sores typically take about 7-10 days to heal completely. However, with early treatment using prescription antiviral medication and over-the-counter remedies, some people may experience faster healing times, possibly within 2-4 days.