Most of us can claim to have had, or at least encountered a cold sore before. A cold sore is a small fluid filled blister type sore which can occur on your lips and around the mouth. They are usually preceded by a burning or itching sensation where the sore is going to appear, usually found on the corner of your lips.
These sores are caused by the Herpes Simplex virus. This is the ‘primary infection’ of herpes simplex (usually found in childhood) where you can be quite ill; sore throat, swollen glands, headaches etc. Cold sores often come out when you’re feeling run down, under the weather, have some sort of hormone imbalance, or are suffering from stress.
Cold sores are extremely contagious and are easily spread if a person touches their cold sore and then touches other stuff too! You can spread Herpes Simplex to your eyes, other areas of your mouth (so no kissing!) and even other parts of your body! You can also develop abscesses of the ends of your fingers called herpetic whitlows.
Our advice to you.
At Horbury Dental Care we recommend that you wait until your cold sore has completely gone before attending an appointment. Not only because there is a risk of spreading it but also because your lips may be sore, dry and may crack and bleed during treatment. A cold sore will generally last 7-14 days, fortunately there are antiviral creams, such as aciclovir that you can get from a Pharmacist which can ease the pain and help the sores heal more quickly.
If you do get a cold sore and you’re due a visit to the dentist, please give us a call on 01924 211234
with as much notice as possible, and we can rearrange your appointment.
Don’t forget, keep your hands off!