FEVER BLISTER / Herpes Labialis : Causes, Treatments, Evolution in 5 minutes !
You can find in this Youtube video and in this health and wellness blog article :
- The definition of a fever blister
- Why do we get a fever blister?
- The cause of a fever blister or cold sore
- Factors that promote the appearance of a fever blister
- How to get rid of a fever blister quickly ?
A fever blister usually appears on the lips and is not very attractive and can be painful.
Fever blisters are also called cold sores. It is due to the presence of a virus in the body called herpes simplex virus or HSV1.
The person is often infected during childhood by direct contact with the virus, usually transmitted through saliva.
The cold sore virus infects 2 types of cells, the epithelial cells (cells that cover the surface of the body or the inside of hollow organs) and the nerve cells in the affected area.
The first infection with the HSV1 virus results in the appearance of a fever blister. This may be accompanied by mouth ulcers, fever and pain in the mouth and lips.
These symptoms disappear after a few days, as the virus is eliminated from the infected epithelial cells.
However, the virus that has entered the nerve cells escapes the immune response and remains inside these cells in a latent state, i.e. it remains hidden.
The cold sore virus activates and deactivates depending on environmental factors (stress, fatigue, menstruation, sun exposure, trauma, surgery, treatment that decreases the capacity of the immune system or fever, as the name suggests...). If one or more of these factors appear, the virus sleeping in the nerve cells, wakes up and will reinfect the epithelial cells what results in the recurrence of the fever blister.
Many people are carriers of this virus, but they are not necessarily subject to fever blisters.
The fever blister appears as a painful tension in the lip, accompanied by itching, tingling, sometimes a headache and fatigue.
After a few days, a cluster of vesicles filled with a clear liquid forms, the vesicles burst, a crust appears, this is the fever blister.
It usually disappears on its own after about ten days without leaving a scar.
In very rare cases, an infection can also reach the eye. This is called herpetic keratitis and causes inflammation of the cornea (transparent membrane in front of the eye).
The cold sore virus is contagious and can be transmitted by direct contact with an infected person.
Fever blisters do not cause any particular complications. It is not a serious infection in itself, but care must be taken when infecting people with weakened immune systems or infants, in whom herpes can cause herpetic encephalitis in very rare cases.
To avoid fever blisters, it is important to protect the skin when exposed to the sun with a sunblock cream adapted to the skin type.
If a fever blister appears, it is imperative to avoid kissing people and especially children, but also not to touch your eyes without having washed your hands well beforehand, to wash the blister only with soap and water or disinfectant products without alcohol, to dry the blister well with a clean handkerchief, to wash your hands immediately afterwards, not to put lipstick, gloss, cream, ... on the blister.
It is also important to use your own hygiene cloth (washcloth, towel, ...) and not to lend it to anyone.
The practice of contact sports is not recommended until the pimple has disappeared to avoid transmitting the virus to other people.
It is recommended to consult a doctor if the fever blister does not disappear after 10 days, if it comes back frequently (more than 6 times a year), if it is accompanied by visual disturbance, pain in the eyes or vesicles that appear near the eyes, a fever or if the person has an immune deficiency or is taking treatments that reduce the capacity of the immune system.
To treat a fever blister, it is recommended to disinfect it once or twice a day with an alcohol-free antiseptic lotion, to apply an antiviral cream such as aciclovir only on the lesions that are located on the lips and around them, it should not be put in the eyes or around the eyes, ...
In case of severe pain, paracetamol can be taken with the advice of your doctor or pharmacist. The doctor can also prescribe an oral antiviral medication such as aciclovir or valaciclovir, especially for the first infection.
I would like to point out that taking an antibiotic will have no effect on a fever blister because it is an infection caused by a virus and not a bacterium.
Certain plants and food supplements can accelerate the healing of a fever blister by facilitating the healing process. They are sage, lemon balm or lysine.