Mouth ulcers, mouth sores, fever blisters, a lip sore and mouth herpes- if you have had or suffer from chronic cold sores, you know they can be pesky, itchy and irritating at times. Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex 1 virus. If cold sores are popping up more than usual or you have had them for years, it may be a signal that it’s time to look at your immune health. Stress from work, a poor diet of rich, fatty and sugary foods and not enough sleep are the “usual suspects” when considering why you may be regularly struck with cold sores.
A safe, alternative to strong medications is the use of essential oils. Essential oils can help balance the immune system to help treat and prevent cold sores because of their antiseptic, regenerative and antiviral properties.
Essential Oils for Cold Sore Relief
Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil is one of the most widely used essential oils in the world because of its wide-ranging application as an anti-microbial (will kill microorganisms and inhibit their growth).
Lavender contains antiseptic and regenerative properties in wound healing. The scent also has calming and relaxing effect.
Lemon balm is one of the most well known oils to help combat cold sores. It has a sedating and calming effect on the nervous system which, as a result, helps regulate the immune system.
Top essential oil to decongest the skin, geranium also helps reduce stressful feelings by providing emotional relief and balance.
Recommended Essential Oil Use:
Direct application: While its common to dilute oils before using, in the case of cold sore, direct application is appropriate with the above oils. Every 2 hours (no less than three times daily), apply 1-2 drops of any of the suggested oils to the cold sore and just around its edges. For small children, dilute oils to 50/50 with a carrier oil such as coconut, sweet almond oil or olive oil.
Prepare a spray: You can refresh and prevent itching while reducing the cold sore with a facial spray. As an added bonus, you may experience a more clear complexion.
Mix together the following:
- 8 drops of geranium
- 10 drops of lavender to your amber bottle, swirl and cap.
- 8 oz water
In a spray bottle add 8 oz of water and pour in blended oils.
Make a gel: For some, direct application is too strong. You can still reap the therapeutic effects of essential oils by creating a barrier between your cold sore and the oil. While carrier oils like coconut work great, consider trying raw aloe vera. Aloe will allow the area to breathe while exerting its beneficial collagen and elastin boosting properties to help heal surrounding tissue.
Other Reminders To Help Prevent Cold Sores
Help your immune system thrive daily by getting enough hydration, fruits and vegetables. Reduce your intake of sugary, rich, fatty foods that may weaken the immune system and allow cold sores to pop up. Be sure to get enough exercise and 20 minutes of daily sunshine to help your body make vitamin D.
Special Precautions To Consider When Applying Essential Oils
When applying essential oils keep your hands away from other areas where viral infection may be transmitted, such as the eyes. The above essential oils are indicated for herpes simplex type 1 — if genital herpes are suspected, seek the help of a licensed health care professional before using essential oils to self-treat.
Remember to test oils to be sure you don’t experience irritation.