Saturday, April 22, 2006

Contagious Cold Sores

Cold Sores, Oral Herpes, Fever Blisters


Cold sores are normally not life threatening. Yes, they can be quite unpleasant for at least a couple weeks. Cold sores often bring on flu-like symptoms such as general malaise, swollen lymph glands under the jaw bone, and possibly a fever.

Cold sores are very painful for most people because the cold sores are formed on the end of the facial nerves. It's not unlike the dentist hitting a nerve. The herpes simplex virus has an affinity to nerve cells. When a person is infected with the cold sore virus, through a mucus membrane or break in the skin, the herpes simplex virus will seek out the nearest nerve and that nerve fiber becomes its home for the duration of your life.

The cold sore virus does not normally travel within the body, but will stay with the nerve that it originally attached to. That is why your cold sores will usually appear in the same general area every time. For example, if you get a cold sore on your upper right lip area, then any reoccurring cold sores from that herpes simplex virus infestation will always appear in the same area.

If you sometimes get a cold sore in this area, and then sometimes on the other side of the lip, it is quite likely that you spread the herpes simplex virus to the other place when you had the first cold sore. The cold sore virus, once attached to a nerve group will usually stay with it.

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cold sores oral herpes fever blisters

It's not uncommon for a person to spread their cold sores all over their lips. The virus creating cold sores is extremely contagious. The fluid that drains from an open cold sore is absolutely teaming with newly cloned cold sore viruses looking for a new home.

It is so critical with cold sores that you be extremely careful not to touch this fluid and then touch another area on your face - or anywhere else on your body where the cold sore virus can enter through a crack in the skin or "soft tissue" like your eyes or genitals.


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