Cold sores affect men and women in all age categories. Millions suffer from them every year but decide not to seek medical help because there’s no known cure. They wait for them to go away on their own, because that’s what they’ve always done, despite the fact that you can heal a cold sore much faster. Let’s find if you should keep cold sores moist or dry.

Many of those who have cold sores will turn to OTC treatments or cover them with a medicated Compeed Cold Sore Patch. This will both treat and conceal the condition, which can be a good option if you need to spend time in the company of others.

Should you keep cold sores moist or dry? Most doctors believe that you should keep cold sores moist so that they don’t crack. The theory behind this is that a cold sore that doesn’t crack open is less likely to release any of the fluid that spreads the herpes simplex virus (HSV-1) to other parts of the body, or other people. Don’t forget that the virus can spread and cause cold sores around the eyes, or even spread to the brain, so you do have to be careful.

Of course, some experts believe that dry conditions can help with the healing process, such as when you have very dry or dehydrated skin. In most cases, keeping cold sores moist is the ‘safer’ option. Drying out cold sores is likely to expedite the healing process in the same way it does with acne

In this article, we will explain the pros and cons of keeping cold sores dry or moist. We’ll also identify some of the most effective treatments, such as the Virulite cold sore machine. This is an easy-to-use FDA-approved treatment that has the potential to get rid of cold sores in only three days. We recommend finding out more about how it can help you to recover faster.

Should You Keep Cold Sores Moist or Dry?

If the blisters are dry and crust over because they don’t have any moisture, your cold sores will become itchier. You may scratch the blisters or break open the crust, which is often what spreads the infection. You can make the condition worse, and there’s also a risk of other skin infections.

The other side of the argument is that, if you keep cold sores dry, they are likely to heal more quickly. Devoid of moisture, they will dry out a lot faster. There is no guarantee, but this approach does work. You will need to avoid scratching the area during itching, tingling and burning sensations. If you were to disturb the scab, you could cause new cold sores to form. If that were to happen, it would prolong the healing time, and new the outbreaks could be worse.

How Do Cold Sores Form?

Cold sores usually begin as a tingling sensation around the lips. For several hours, you will experience a strange feeling, and tiny spots will start to appear later. These will turn into blisters. The itching, tingling, and burning sensations will worsen at this stage.

The blisters will be filled with an infectious fluid. It could be a tiny cold sore if the outbreak is minimal, but some people find that half of the lip becomes blistered. While cold sores are most common in and around the mouth, they can also appear on the cheeks, nose, and chin.

Over the next few days, the blisters will burst open, ooze fluid, and a crust will develop. The crust will dry up, and the blisters will start to heal. You won’t ‘normally’ experience any scarring once they’re gone, but scars do happen sometimes.

Now that you know about all of the symptoms and the various stages of cold sores, you’ll understand why keeping cold sores moist can be beneficial. Using topical solutions, like HERP-B-GONE also help to accelerate the healing process.

How to Treat Cold Sores

There is no known cure for cold sores.

It is a virus, and even if you take antiviral medicine, there is no certainty that it will target the herpes simplex virus type 1, which is the cause of this disease. There are many triggers of cold sores. The reason may be the virus, but the facilitators are many.

Prescription Medications

You can use some prescription drugs, such as Acyclovir (Xerese, Zovirax), Valacyclovir (Valtrex), Famciclovir (Famvir) and Penciclovir (Denavir). Talk to your doctor if you’re interested in any of these options. They will tell you when and how to apply them for best results.

Over-the-Counter Treatments

Many OTC cold sore treatments will keep cold sores moist, numb the pain, and reduce time to heal.

How Long Do Cold Sores Take to Heal?

The use of an antiviral medicine is unlikely to protect you, but they do help you to recover faster. Cold sores heal naturally in up to 14 days.

Some people find that cold sores get worse with age. Those who suffer from frequent cold sores may experience chronic symptoms and experience several outbreaks a year. A cold sore treatment can speed up the healing process, and conceal cold sores.

Are There Any Potential Complications?

Diagnosing cold sores isn’t tricky, but the challenge arises when complications emerge.

If you have gum erosion, a sore throat, aching muscles, swollen lymph nodes, the sores may not show any signs of healing for several weeks. These symptoms are more likely to be experienced during the primary infection, rather than recurrent infections.

If you experience irritation of the eyes, have severe burns, or a viral disease (including HIV/AIDS), seeing a doctor is advised.

Are Cold Sores Dangerous?

As long as cold sores are confined to blisters on and around the lips, they are not threatening. If the infection spreads to the eyes, fingers, and brain, you should consult a doctor to discuss the various treatment options. For example, they may prescribe eye drops for ocular cold sores.

Should you keep cold sores moist or dry? If you want to heal the area quickly, keeping cold sores dry will speed up the healing process. Just be warned that it will also be much easier to spread the virus. If you keep the area moist, it will be less likely to crack or split open. The healing process will be a bit slower, but you’ll also be less likely to develop new cold sores or infect other people. It is a matter of preference regarding how you choose to proceed.

Proven Cold Sore Treatments

Here are just a few proven cold sore treatments that work. You can buy any of these online. I hope our article helped you understand if you should keep cold sores moist or dry.

Bestseller No. 1
Mederma Cold Sore Discreet Healing Patch, Instantly Hides Fever Blisters, 15 Count
9,539 Reviews
Mederma Cold Sore Discreet Healing Patch, Instantly Hides Fever Blisters, 15 Count
  • FAST HEALING ultra-thin Hydrocolloid Gel provides a moist environment to help: relieve pain, reduce the blistering and prevent scabbing.
Bestseller No. 2
Abreva Cold Sore Treatment Rapid Pain Relief Cream - 1 Tube, 3 Grams
  • One tube of Abreva Cold Sore Rapid Pain Relief, 3 grams
  • Shortens duration of tingling, pain, burning and itching
  • Easy applicable tube form for on-the-go use. When you feel pain and burning from the cold sore or blister, Abreva has you covered with Abreva Rapid Pain Relief gel. It delivers quick, targeted relief from the first application.
SaleBestseller No. 3
Campho Phenique Cold Sore and Fever Blister Treatment for Lips, Maximum Strength Provides Instant Relief, Helps Prevent Infection To Promote Healing, Original Gel Formula, 0.23 Oz
14,331 Reviews
Campho Phenique Cold Sore and Fever Blister Treatment for Lips, Maximum Strength Provides Instant Relief, Helps Prevent Infection To Promote Healing, Original Gel Formula, 0.23 Oz
  • Trusted: A favorite for cold sore and fever blister treatment for lips for over 130 years.
  • Instant Relief: Formulated with camphor and phenol to temporarily inactivate the pain signals at the nerve endings in the skin to provide a local anesthetic (numbing effect) that stops the pain and itch of cold sores and fever blisters on contact.
  • Helps Prevent Infection: Antiseptic properties help prevent infection to promote cold sore healing.
  • Aloe Soothes and Moisturizes: Prevents dryness and cracking as cold sores and fever blisters dry out.
  • Store at room temperature


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Cold sore. Health Service Executive;

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