Cold Sores (Fever Blisters) on Lip

fever blister treatment

Cold sores and fever blisters are triggered by herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1). This virus is passed from person to person by saliva (either directly, or by drinking from the very same glass or cup) or by skin contact. Cold sores typically look like clusters of tiny blisters on the lip. About 8 from 10 people have the virus that causes cold sores. Most individuals are first infected before they are 10 years old.

After this first infection, the virus remains dormant (non-active) in the nerves of the face. In some individuals, the virus ends up being active again from time to time. When this takes place, cold sores appear. HSV-1 can get active again since of a cold or fever.

Stress likewise can cause a fever blister break out. This consists of mental and psychological stress, along with dental treatment, health problem, injury to the lips or sun direct exposure. HSV-1 likewise can contaminate the eyes, the skin of the fingers and the genital areas. The majority of herpes infections are caused by herpes simplex type 2 (HSV-2), nevertheless.

HSV-1 can cause severe illness in people who have other health problems. The virus also can trigger severe illness in people whose body immune systems are deteriorated by either disease or medicines they are taking.

Symptoms of Fever Blister on Lip

Individuals infected with HSV-1 for the very first time may have fever, headache, nausea and vomiting. They might have painful swelling and open sores in the mouth. Some people have a sore throat. These symptoms typically start about a week after somebody is exposed to HSV-1.

Cold sores appear when HSV-1 is reactivated later in life. They might take place after a period of health problem or stress, bad nutrition or sunshine exposure. Often there’s no known factor. Dental procedures that stretch the lip might sometimes trigger the virus.

The border of the lip is the most common location that these sores appear. They may occasionally take place inside the mouth, too. This is more likely in individuals who have actually damaged body immune systems or other medical issues.

The first sign of a cold sore is a tingling, burning or itching. This is followed by swelling and soreness. Within 24 to 48 hours, one or more tiny blisters (“fever blisters”) appear. These blisters pop and kind unpleasant sores (“cold sores”). The sores become covered by crusts, which appear like scabs. The crusts are shed and form once more while the sore heals.


Your dentist or doctor generally can diagnose cold sores by asking you about your case history and analyzing you. If you have other medical conditions, your physician might do other tests to diagnose cold sores. These tests are generally not necessary in healthy individuals.

Expected Duration

When you are first infected with HSV-1, symptoms can last for 7 to 14 days. Cold sores usually crust within 4 days and heal completely within 8 to 10 days.


To assist to prevent a first herpes infection in children do not let them be kissed by anybody who has cold sores, fever blisters or signs of a first herpes infection. Nevertheless, HSV-1 is very common. The majority of children will be infected by the time they maturate. Several various vaccines are being developed versus HSV (types 1 and 2), however these appear to safeguard only people who have actually never ever been infected.

There is evidence that making use of sunscreen on your lips will prevent cold sores brought on by sun direct exposure. Antiviral medications might prevent cold sores from forming. In particular situations, your dental professional or physician might recommend these medications. If you expect to come across a recognized trigger, a medicine taken in advance can reduce the chance of a cold sore.

Fever Blister Treatment

Some medications can help cold sores recover quicker. They likewise alleviate pain and discomfort. The medications are acyclovir (Zovirax), famciclovir (Famvir) and valacyclovir (Valtrex). These drugs can not eliminate the virus. You need to take them each time you can feel a fever blister beginning. When you have blisters on your lip, the medicines will not help much.

These drugs also can stop cold sores from turning up in the first place. Some people take them when they know they will be under stress.

Keep the area clean and apply lip balm. Try not to touch the area. Do not choose at the crusts over the sores. Avoid kissing anyone while you have blisters and sores. Cold sores can spread out through kissing and by sharing things that touch the lips and the skin around them, such as spoons, forks, glasses and towels.

When To Call a Professional

Cold sores prevail. They typically are not harmful. If you have a weakened immune system (due to the fact that of a disease, or because of medications you take), HSV-1 can trigger a serious health problem. Call your dentist or physician right away if:

  • Lip or mouth sores persist longer than one week
  • The sores make it hard for you to talk or ingest
  • You establish a fever
  • You have a second outbreak of blisters


HSV-1 infection is a lifelong problem.


The Author

Reyus Mammadli

Healthy lifestyle advisor. Bachelor Degree of Medical Equipment and Electronics.
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