How to Treat and Prevent Cold Sores
How to stop a cold sore in the early stages? What's good for cold sores? We have 6 easy home remedies for getting rid of cold sores fast—plus 1 tip for preventing future outbreaks.
Make a cold sore a thing of the past with honey! Just dab unpasteurized honey on the spot three times a day, and its antioxidants and enzymes will decrease inflammation and allow it to heal faster.
You can spend a lot of money on expensive cold sore remedies, or try this DIY version that will cost you mere pennies. Mix a small amount of baking soda with enough water to make a paste, and apply the paste to the cold sore. Allow it to dry, then rinse and pat dry. Repeat every day until the cold sore disappears, usually in about a week.
Give It a Shot
It turns out that vodka’s good for more than just drinking. It can also send a cold sore packing! Using a fresh cotton swab each time, dab a little of the strong stuff on the sore a few times a day. The alcohol will dry it out and speed the healing process. (How do you say “three cheers for vodka” in Russian?)
See also: Nutrition Tips for Preventing Cold Sores
Tea Tree Oil and Vinegar
Both tea tree oil and vinegar can help with cold sores. Just as with the vodka, dab a little of either one on the sore several times a day for relief. They’re both good antiseptics.
Now you’ve got the immediate outbreak under control and the painful sore has started to crust over. Keep it moisturized with petroleum jelly. It will help stop painful cracking. Just remember to use a fresh cotton swab each time.
A little bit of fresh aloe dabbed on a cold sore can also do a world of good. It helps reduce inflammation and provides essential moisture. If you don’t have an aloe plant, you can also use pure aloe gel for the same effect.
Toss the Toothbrush
After the sore is gone, replace your toothbrush. The virus that causes cold sores likes to linger, and the germs could still be there days after you’re feeling better. Yuck! During an outbreak, it’s also a good idea to make sure your toothbrush dries thoroughly between brushings. Keep it near an open window or somewhere sunny.