Ayurvedic Natural Care
Cold sores are one of the most common ailments that can be healed efficiently with the help of several natural herbal remedies. Some of these herbs come with numerous antiviral elements which ward off the root cause of the cold sores named Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV), and thus help treat the infection completely.
On the other hand, some other herbs make our body as well as immune system stronger to curb the infection from spreading further. However, it is of utmost importance to know about those natural preventive measures as well as remedies to stay away from cold sores. Here is a list of 8 herbal remedies for cold sores:
Herbal Remedies for Treating Cold Sores
Aloe Vera (Aloe Barbadensis)
Aloe vera is one of the most useful herbal remedies for cold sores. Pure aloe vera gel can be obtained bysnipping an aloe leaf and extracting the mucilaginous jelly from its parenchyma cells. When applied to the scar caused by cold sore, the aloe vera gel can promote healing considerably by humidifying the region and preventing further infectivity.
Topical aloe vera gel can be used several times a day to the cold sore. On the other hand, juice taken out of an aloe vera plant can also be consumed to help relieve the sore and improve the immunity.
Tea Tree (Melaleuca Alternifolia)
The essential oil produced from the herb tea tree also exhibits soothing effects when applied topically. Being a valuable natural antiseptic, tea tree oil is used to accelerate the healing of viral infections like cold sores. Prepare an essential oil mixture by combining 4 drops of tea tree oil with 4 tablespoons of olive oil. It can cure the cold sore rapidly if applied 3 to 4 times a day.
You can also heal the cold sore in just 2 or 3 days by taking an herbal concoction orally. Add tea tree plant as well as violet sage to a cup of water. Bring the mixture to a boil and let the herbs steep. Store the concoction after cooling it down, and drink frequently to get the best result.
Lemon Balm (Melissa Officinalis)
Several studies have successfully proved that the aromatic herb lemon balm or bee balm possesses substantial antiviral elements. The leaves of the plant, the water extract of it, and the essential oil produced from it – all of them contain a polyphenol called ‘rosmarinic acid’. This chemical restricts the functionality of Herpes Simplex Virus type 2 (HSV-2) which is one of the major causes of cold sores. The organic compound ‘caffeic acid’ present in lemon balm is also well-known for its anti-herpes properties.
Lemon balm can be used as an infusion by boiling it in the water for at least 15 minutes. Drink this tea infusion quite a few times a day. The same infusion can be used topically too. Just apply it to the cold soredaily for 3 to 4 times by using a cotton ball. The lemon balm tincture is also helpful in eliminating the first sign of itchiness in the affected part. It has been shown that an application of lemon-balm cream (at least 4 times daily for 5 days) can cut the recovery time in almost half.
Licorice (Glycyrrhiza Glabra)
Another popular herbal remedy for cold sores is licorice. The root extract of this herb is full of two antiviral constituents named ‘glycyrrhizin’ and ‘glycyrrhetinic acid’. Among these two compounds, glycyrrhizin is able to deactivate different types of Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) very fast which helps treat cold sores significantly.
Licorice tea can be prepared by boiling some licorice roots in the water. By drinking this infusion 2 to 3 times a day or applying it onto the scar, you can cure them completely. Besides, licorice is also available as cream or gel which can be applied to the cold sores several times a day.
Echinacea (Echinacea Angustifolia)
When it comes to wiping away the root causes of cold sore completely, the importance of the herb echinacea can never be ignored. It boosts the functionality of our immune system by reviving it naturally, which eventually helps us fight against several bacterial as well as viral infections.
A certain chemical compound present in echinacea is known to provide enough protection to our mucus membranes (or collagen) against the herpes virus that causes cold sores. Whispering 1 teaspoonful liquid Echinacea root decoction at least 3 times a day can maximize the protection.
Black Walnut (Juglans Nigra)
Cold sores can be naturally treated by the herb black walnut to a great extent. This herb is rich in natural iodine that helps cure the cold sore effectively. Black walnut also possesses strong antiseptic properties which facilitate its use as an antiseptic in the healing of cold sores, both orally as well as topically.
Black walnut hull tincture can be applied topically to the affected region 2 to 3 times daily in order to get rid of the pain caused by the sores. On the hand, the water extract of black walnut is able to diminish the further possibilities of cold sores when taken orally.
Star Anise (Illicium Verum)
Star anise is another efficient Chinese herbal remedy for cold sores. Studies have found that the properties of the essential oil derived from this particular herb are almost similar to those of any potential anti-viral agent.
The star anise essential oil has two significant chemicals named ‘phenylpropanoids’ and ‘sesquiterpenes’ (also known as ‘beta-caryophyllene’) which make the herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) inactive directly, and reduce the probability of repeated cold sores almost 99 percent.
Peppermint (Mentha Piperita)
Being a strong fragrant herb, the peppermint produces a powerful essential oil. This essential oil i.e., peppermint oil is known to have amazing anti-viral effects that limit the activities of two main factors of cold sores – Herpes Simplex Virus type 1 (HSV-1) and Herpes Simplex Virus type 2 (HSV-2).
Moreover, according to the researchers, the peppermint oil can nullify the resistance of the strains of HSV-1 on acyclovir, an over-the-counter (OTC) medication used to treat cold sores caused by herpes infections. However, the peppermint oil can be used only topically and not in any other form.