Learn About Genital Herpes - Your Guide To Manage Herpes In Your Life
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Coldsores - Little Known Factsfrom:
Coldsores, also called fever blisters and oral herpes, are a
global epidemic - or pandemic.
Coldsores are the visible symptom of an active herpes virus
infestation. More specifically, coldsores are the result of the
reproduction process of the herpes virus.
The World Health Organization estimates 85% to 91% of the world
population currently carries the herpes simplex virus type 1 or
2 (HSV-1 and HSV-2). For all practical purposes, that means just
about everybody is infected with the coldsores virus. Recorded
history shows that this has been true since about 500 years
prior to the Roman Empire.
HSV-1 is responsible for about 80% of reoccurring coldsores. The
other 20% of coldsores are caused by HSV-2.
Of those infected with the herpes virus, 76% will have one or
several coldsores within the next 12 months. The other 24% often
go a lifetime without experiencing any symptom of coldsores.
The herpes virus most of the time is latent, or in hibernation,
in the nerve ganglia nearest to the site of your coldsores. In
the case of facial coldsores, this would be in an area behind
the jawbone, near the brain stem.
When the coldsores virus becomes active, they travel up the
nerve fibers to the surface where they replicate and create
those painful coldsores right on the end of the nerves.
Coldsores normally occur on the face, appearing on the edge of
the lip, called the vermilion border. The nostril is also a
common site for coldsores.
What most people don't know, however, is coldsores can appear
anywhere from the waist up. For example: fingertip coldsores do
occur. They're often a much more painful event because of the
constant use of the fingers in our daily routine.
Coldsores are extremely contagious. The coldsores virus spreads
externally, not internally. Kissing is the primary way coldsores
are transmitted to others - especially from adults to children.
Most people are infected before they're a dozen years old.
The lips, mouth and nose are not protected by skin and are an
easy target. Coldsores can also spread to anywhere on the body
where the virus can find an opening - like a cut on the finger.
Although coldsores are not life threatening, coldsores can cause
a lot of grief and damage if spread to the eyes with
contaminated fingers. This can cause loss of sight. Also, with
oral sex, the coldsores can be spread to the vagina or penis,
creating the dreaded genital herpes.
Coldsores are contagious from the first itching stage to the
disappearance of the final red spot. They are most contagious
during the open weeping and crust stages. The crust cracks
frequently when you move your mouth, as in smiling.
The fluid from these coldsores is absolutely teaming with the
Extreme caution must be taken with active coldsores. Coldsores
itch and hurt a lot, so we tend to touch them frequently. Then
the virus sheds to our fingers - and is easily transmitted to
another location or person.
Self-control is imperative. Each time you touch your coldsores,
you must wash your hands.
Keep little bottles of hand sterilizing soap or baby-wipes on
hand. Baby-wipes have a sterilizing ingredient and are
particularly handy and useful. You can dab the coldsores with
them instead of your fingers. This also speeds healing of
Coldsores are brought on primarily by physical stress. Keep in
mind even mental stress will manifest itself physically. Colds
(thus the term coldsores), fever (thus the term fever blisters),
pregnancy, injury, and nearly any physical trauma can easily
bring the virus out of hibernation and cause coldsores.
Fact is, upcoming weddings, according to the mail I get, are one
of the biggest causes of coldsores.
There are a huge variety of treatments for coldsores. These
include over-the-counter medications, prescription anti-viral
pills and salves, and many natural remedies.
You'll find over-the-counter products are mainly comfort
medications. None of them have ever proven to shorten your
coldsores. One exception to this - some have antibacterial
agents. This prevents secondary bacterial infections. If you do
get a bacterial infection, and this is common, it will greatly
lengthen the healing times and discomfort of your coldsores.
Much of the benefit of over-the-counters is a numbing agent to
reduce pain. Some contain oils that help keep the scab softer so
it doesn't crack.
Prescription medications for coldsores, up to this point, have
been dismal failures. There are several brand names but the
generic name for the active ingredient is acyclovir. The
antiviral salve will take, maybe, one or two days off your
3-week coldsores. The antiviral pills helped reduce the number
of coldsores for only 47% of the people tested. This was a very
short study so it wasn't very accurate.
Please note this medication is not to be taken if you're
pregnant or going to be pregnant soon. Also, there is some
concern for liver damage.
Your best option, in fact your ONLY option for coldsores right
now, is the variety of known natural remedies for coldsores. In
real life studies, natural remedies have shortened the duration
of coldsores by as much as 85%. Among these are honey, DMSO, tea
tree oil, zinc, lysine, aloe vera, certain herbs and a few
others in certain forms and combinations.
Coldsores can literally be a real pain. But you can easily, like
many thousands of others have, discover the right combination of
remedies for yourself and enjoy a lifetime of freedom from
About the author:
Denny Bodoh is a 33-year newspaper veteran, and an alternative
health and nutrition research writer. Learn more about
coldsores, and what you can do about coldsores, by going to his
wildly popular cold sore site. http://be-cold-sore-free.com/
Copyright 2005 drbodoh
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