The dreaded cold sore. 50-80% of the adult population in the US have oral herpes… commonly referred to as cold sores or fever blisters. Not everyone that has the virus develop sores, but once you have the virus it is with you for life. Cold sores can be triggered by certain foods, long exposure to the sun, menstrual cycle, and stress to name a few.
If you are one of the (un)lucky ones who experience breakouts, you know firsthand how painful they can be. The sooner you can catch the breakout the better. If you are reading this then you already know the symptoms and common signs of an outbreak so let’s skip to how to get rid of those pesky sores fast.
Instead of reaching for a prescription or over the counter medication, you might just want to take a look at that collection of essential oils you’ve accumulated throughout the years. Let’s start by saying that essential oils are concentrated plant oils and are not meant to be ingested. Instead, you can use them topically or diffuse them. For the purpose of getting rid of a cold sore apply the essential oil topically directly on the sore. Due to the potency of the oils, it is important to dilute them before putting them on the skin. You can do this by using a carrier oil such as jojoba oil.
- Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil comes in as a triple threat. It is an anti-viral, anti-septic, and has anti-inflammatory properties. To keep your skin from getting irritated be sure and dilute the tea tree oil with a gentle carrier oil. Tea tree oil is strong and used at full strength can be irritating to the skin.
2. Peppermint Oil
Peppermint oil is also an anti-viral and it has been shown to calm symptoms and kill the active virus. Here is a study about the effectiveness of the oil on herpes type 1, and 2. Peppermint oil should be diluted and applied directly to the sore.
3. Oregano Oil
Oregano oil has proven to be effective for shortening or even staving off many different illnesses from the cold to the flu. It has also been found to be effective against HSV. Apply a diluted amount to the cold sore several times a day and it will help the blister to heal more quickly.