I LOVE Cold Sores!
That kind of comment has to intrigue you a little bit! That has to be one of the silliest things that you have ever heard – at least I hope it is!
Who the heck would love to have a cold sore or want to suffer through the symptoms of a cold sore?
Cant answer that; and yet, based on what I see at retail, and based on some of my own anecdotal research, (asking people I know) it has shown me that many people seem to really love their cold sores because they really don’t “treat” them well. I will explain in a moment.
First off, a quick and dirty as to what is a cold sore;
Cold Sores, also called fever blisters, are fluid-filled lessions caused by herpes simplex virus type 1 infection (Mayo Clinic). The virus lies latent (dormant) in the body and is reawakened by factors like stress, sunburn, or fever. They reoccur less after age 35. An spf of 15 or more on the lips will reduce recurrences from sunburn. There is no cure for fever blisters (MedicineNet.com).
What I meant when I said people seem to love their cold sores.
I know of many people who will shop the lip balm set, look at the products within the set, and pick products that will do nothing to help, relieve, and/or reduce the symptoms of a cold sore. Nothing! Most of what is in the lip balm sets of most retailers, are products that moisturize lips, or add an spf to assist in good suncare regiments, or do a bit of both. Hence, the $1.99 to $3.99ish prices.
There are products that are on the market that will, or may provide short term relief of the itching and some of the pain that is associated with a cold sore; but you need to understand some of the actives that you need to look for in a product.
Products may, or can include some of the following active ingredients. Actives like camphor, phenol, or menthol – these are what you find in Blsitex Medex. They could also include actives like Benzyl Alcohol, which is what is in Zilactin Medicated Gel. Or they could be products that have zinc and heparin in them like Lipactin. Some products can contain the amino acid –L-Lysine; products like Vivitas L-Lysine tabs. These may provide some itch relief or even some pain relief that is associated with cold sores.
The only product in Canada that is clinically proven to reduce the symptoms of the cold sore and has been shown to reduce the length of suffering is Abreva (Docosanol Cream).
Challenge is – Abreva is much more expensive than the other options and probably a key reason as to why some of the other options (not necessarily bad options I might add, but not clinically proven either) are being used.
At London Drugs for example;
I would put this to my friends and family, “If you are considering the option of hanging onto your cold sore and it’s symptoms as long as possible, then choose what you will”. If you are wanting to reduce you suffering time and more quickly reduce your cold sore symptoms, you are pretty much going to have to buck up and buy the Abreva. Sorry! That is really the only one that is clinically proven and probably going to be recommended by the Docs and RX.
Now if you really want to make your lips, and you favourite retailer really happy; buy the Abreva and a lip balm/moisturizer! You will not only treat your cold sore, protect your lips from the sun (with an spf), and/or give your lips some great moisturizing; you will give us a better sale!
Remember, this is a retail blog on many days!! LOL!!
All kidding aside, take care of your lips and skin. Use the correct products to treat ailments and purchase the best products to protect yourself. Please do not use any meds, unless you consult your Doc or your trusted London Drugs Pharmacist first.
I hope this helps.
Ciao for now @kootenayborn