Cold sores are painful blisters caused by the herpes simplex virus. You usually feeling a tingling or itching sensation in your lip just before one emerges. Cold sores can erupt in response to stress, illness, chapped lips or sun exposure.
There are a number of homeopathic remedies for cold sores. Choose the remedy that most closely matches all of your symptoms. Take one to three of the 30C potency or strength tablets, called pellets, every 1 to 3 hours, for up to three doses total, or as instructed by your homeopathic practitioner. If you haven't seen an improvement, choose another remedy. The wrong remedy won't hurt you: You just won't receive any benefit from it. Homeopathic remedies are safe to take with other medications, but if you're taking prescription medications or under a doctor's care, you should talk with him about your cold sores, especially if your immune system is compromised, and tell him about any over-the-counter medications you are using.
Before the Outbreak
When you first experience the tingling sensation that heralds the impending arrival of a cold sore, take Natrum muriaticum. This remedy is especially helpful if you tend to have outbreaks after sun exposure, if your lips are dry or if your lower lip is cracked in the middle. Another remedy said to prevent blisters from forming is Apis mellifica. Women who tend to have cold sore outbreaks just before their period can take one dose daily of Lachesis or Sepia to help prevent outbreaks. If your lips are cracked and sore, Baptisia tinctoria can help. If you have cracks in the corner of your mouth along with eruptions that burn, itch and are scaly, consider Antimonium crudum. Rhus toxicodendron can also be taken once every 24 hours.
During the Outbreak
If you get blisters inside your mouth, use the homeopathic remedy Borax. Borax also helps lessen the pain of an outbreak. A tincture of Calendula can be applied to the cold sores to reduce pain. If you have many small blisters that burn, use Arsenicum album. Continue taking Rhus toxicodendron once daily until the blisters begin to crust.
In the final stages of an outbreak the cold sores will crust over. If your blisters quickly develop itchy crusts and the fluid in your blisters is whitish, choose Mezereum. If your blisters itch and sting before crusting, become even more itchy after crusting and are filled with a yellowish liquid, choose Graphites instead.
All of the remedies listed above are individual remedies. Hyland's also makes a product for cold sores and fever blisters that is a combination product. This remedy contains Antimonium crudum, Baptisia tinctoria, Borax and Natrum muriaticum in a base of milk sugar (lactose). If you choose a commercial combination remedy, take it according to label instructions.
If stress and worry tend to cause outbreaks for you, and your blisters are soothed by hot drinks, try the remedy Arsenicum album. Children and infants who suffer from frequent cold sores can be helped by Calcarea carbonica. If cold sores develop secondary infections and form pus, the remedy Hepar sulphuris calcareum can be used. If cold sores are present with bleeding gums and offensive breath, try Mercurius solubilis.