Cold sores are very painful blisters that develop on the lips and around the mouth. The blisters are caused by the herpes simplex virus HSV-1. Most people will have cold sores at some point in their lives, but the virus does not lay dormant inside the body, it is always active. When you come into contact with an individual who has active herpes, your body’s immune system reacts to the virus by producing antibodies to fight it off. These antibodies weaken the barrier of the skin and allow the virus to move inside the body where it attacks the healthy tissue.
The first stage of cold sores outbreaks is usually the most painful. This is called the early spring fold. It lasts about two to four days and the outbreaks are usually most intense around this time. There is no particular time period that is common for this stage, it just moves from one stage to another as the virus stays active inside the body. Additional info found at cold sores stages.
As the virus moves through each of the four stages it becomes less effective. If left in its current state, it may cause fever, painful cramps and general aches and pains. You may also feel a dull pain inside the upper lip or mouth. There are many different symptoms associated with each stage of the outbreak, so it is important that you are aware of them and seek medical attention if you experience any of these symptoms.
The final two stages of the outbreak are known as the peeling and cracking stages. During this stage the sore is being destroyed and the infection is being removed from the skin. At this point, there may be tingling or redness in the area where the outbreak was. The skin will also become extremely dry and scaly, which can make the healing process difficult.
To get rid of cold sores during this stage, you need to first build up your immune system. During this time you should drink lots of fluids, especially water, to help flush the fluid out of your body and help replace it with new fluid. If possible, you should also take vitamin C and zinc supplements as well. These vitamins and minerals will help boost your immune system, which will allow you to fight off the infection more effectively.
When the second set of blisters appears you are at the scabbing stage. This is the most painful stage because the dead skin around your mouth is very sensitive and can easily crack when it is irritated. You will probably experience increased bleeding at this stage, as well as the most painful burning sensations imaginable. You should wash your hands as often as possible because it is very easy for the blisters to spread and get infected if you do not sanitize your hands properly. To prevent the scabs from cracking you should apply an ice pack to the affected area every fifteen minutes. The ice will reduce the amount of pain that you feel, while also cooling the skin down enough so that the blisters will not blister even more.