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Remedies for Cold Sores

We went camping the weekend of June 19th, the one and only truly beautiful weekend we have had so far this summer. I could not resist spending as much time in the sun as possible and by Sunday my skin was showing sights of my over indulgence. My forehead was burned so badly that it actually became swollen which then spread to my eyes. (This happened to me once before when I was in Mexico). I guess I need to buy a big hat. Now two days later I’m feeling a cold sore developing on my lower lip. I’m sure it is just another reaction of too much sun. It’s really bad timing as Aleesha’s staggett is this weekend and we all know the reaction people have to cold sores – like you have some disease. So I went on the Internet and looked through some books searching for a quick cure – well, there really isn’t a quick cure but there are some things you can do to quicken the healing process. I’m sure I cannot be the only person this will happen to this summer so I thought I would share the information I found. There is no cure for cold sores, but there are remedies you can use that will reduce the severity and frequency of them. Cold sores may appear after colds, fevers, exposure to the sun, stress, during menstruation, or for no apparent reason. Generally it is felt that anything that compromises the immune system may trigger the cold sores. Cold sores may also indicate a deficiency in calcium. One sign of a calcium deficiency is biting your nails. Take a calcium supplement and see if the problem improves. If you have a cold sore already, pop the sore so it will drain and be able to dry out and heal faster. Here are some other tips to help you get rid of the nasty things sooner.

Vitamin C Take 200-500 mg. of vitamin C along with 200-500 mg. of citrus bioflavonoid three times a day. This remedy will greatly reduce the duration of the sores.

Vitamin E, applied topically, will provide pain relief.

Yogurt Eating plain yogurt (with acidophilus) with live cultures is a good preventive measure. Heat-treated yogurt won't work. People who have added yogurt to their daily diet have discovered that they don't get cold sores, or very few. Yogurt seems to stimulate the immune system.

Zinc Using zinc has been reported to reduce the duration of cold sores. Applied topically, it speeds healing.

Aloe When the tingling starts, try rubbing juice from an aloe plant on the affected area. If you are traveling, take a bottle of aloe gel with you just in case a sore begins. This remedy is especially effective if used at the first sign of a cold sore, but will also stop it later on, too, and will begin the healing process immediately and keep the sore from "blossoming."

Cornstarch Apply a cornstarch paste.

Camphor Have your pharmacist mix up some spirits of camphor and dab it on the sore with a cotton ball.

Grapefruit seed extract (GSE) - mix a few drops of GSE with aloe or another liquid, such as olive oil, and dab it on to the sore. GSE is very strong, so use sparingly.

Lemon balm German studies indicated that an extract of lemon balm reduced symptoms and sped the healing process.

Mint A topical application of mint will speed healing of the sore, often within five days.

Sage Make a tea by adding two or three leaves to a cup of boiling water; steep; add one teaspoon of powdered ginger. Drink several cups a day until the sores are cleared up.

Tea Steep an ordinary tea bag in boiling water for a few minutes; cool; then apply to lesions. Within four or five days the lesions should crust over and disappear.

Vaseline will help ease cracking and dryness.

Have a wonderful summer and try to protect your skin from TO MUCH SUN.

By: Kathryn Hartwell


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