Cold Sore Symptoms
|Cold Sore Symptoms - Do You Have Cold Sores?|
Cold sore symptoms: the straight facts to help you avoid spreading them to a loved one.
Cold sore symptoms occur for the first time during the primary infection stage. Once the virus is in your body it can occur as recurrent attacks of fluid-filled blisters. Most people are infected with the herpes simplex virus before the age of seven so you might not remember your initial illness. Your illness may also have shown few or very mild symptoms which is the case in about 99% of people.
The initial infection with the herpes simplex virus causes fever, irritability, headache, and pain upon swallowing. A day or so after this the mouth becomes painful and the gums will be very inflamed. On about the third day tiny blisters form in the mouth These rupture into gray-colored ulcers which can be very painful. These cold sore symptoms last about 10 to 14 days.
Once the virus is established in the skin or nerve tissue it remains dormant until it is triggered and painful cold sore symptoms result. In many cases the trigger isn't known but there are several factors that can contribute to an outbreak such as exposure to strong sunlight, fever, physical or emotional stress, hormonal changes such as pregnancy or menstruation, or specific foods or medication.
Cold sore symptoms include burning, tingling or itching. This occurs around the edges of the lips or nose and after a few hours or days small inflamed areas start to form. This is followed by small fluid-filled blisters. Sometimes a few small blisters enlarge and form one big blister.
The blisters get bigger and then break open to release sticky fluid which forms crusts. The cold sore symptoms usually subside in about three weeks or less. The sores do not usually leave scars.
Cold sore symptoms should be differentiated from canker sores. Canker sores are ulcers inside the mouth and are not caused by the herpes virus. Canker sores are caused by acute stress, trauma to the mouth, allergies, or by a reaction to a particular bacteria. They are not contagious whereas cold sores are.