The winter is supposed to be the most joyous time of the year. That’s why it’s so frustrating that it’s the primary season for cold sores. There’s nothing more frustrating than showing up to a family gathering with a cold sore. So, why are cold sores more common in winter?
There are several triggers that can set off the development of a cold sore, some of which are difficult to avoid. The flu, fatigue, stress and extreme weather conditions are just a few of the common triggers for cold sores.1 Because all of these triggers are active during winter, many people tend to suffer more cold sores during that season than any other time of the year.2
However, while there is no cure, there are ways to minimize cold sore outbreaks. Here are some top winter tips to help avoid – and manage – painful and embarrassing cold sores.
Sounds impossible, right? You’re busying cooking, wrapping gifts and simply enjoying the holiday season. All of that sounds great, but if you’ve had a cold sore before, try to take it easy. Since the virus never leaves your body, you are more likely to have a flare up by stressing over Black Friday sales or your visiting in-laws. Here’s a suggestion: rather then braving the midnight crowd on Black Friday, stay at home and order your gifts online. The additional sleep and reduced stress could help you stave off a breakout.
Keep Your Lips Moisturized2
Winter is tough on the lips. In most parts of the country, the winter season requires a jacket, hat and gloves. If you’re going to protect the rest of your body from the cold, make sure you protect your lips from getting chapped, too! Protect your face and mouth with lip balm, moisturizer and a scarf.
Wash Your Hands3
You should always wash your hands after you use the restroom, cough or sneeze. In addition, you should wash your hands as often as possible when you travel, as airplanes, airports and other forms of public transportation are breeding grounds for germs.
If you develop a cold or the flu, you’re more likely to develop a cold sore, so wash your hands often! Washing your hands on a regular basis is one of the best ways to prevent a cold, the flu or an infection.
Take Action Immediately
If you’ve had a cold sore before, you know the symptoms that you feel before one appears on your face. If you’ve never had one before, look out for a tingling or burning sensation around your lips or on your gums.
As soon as you feel these symptoms, see your physician and inquire about Sitavig® (acyclovir), 50mg Muco-Adhesive Buccal Tablet. Sitavig can help stop cold sores before they develop. Plus, its one-and-done dosing means that a single low dose is all you need to treat your cold sore.
1- HowStuffWorks.com – 10 Causes and Treatments for Cold Sores
2- <a href="http://blogs.webmd weightloss tablets.com/healthy-skin/2012/01/cold-sores.html”>WebMD.com Blog – Cold Sores
3- WebMD.com – Understanding Cold Sores Treatment
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
Sitavig should not be used in patients with known hypersensitivity to acyclovir, milk protein concentrate, or other components of the product.
Sitavig has not been studied in pregnant women or in immunocompromised patients and no interaction studies have been performed. Sitavig’s safety and efficacy have not been established in pediatric patients.
Sitavig is a Pregnancy Category B product; therefore it should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit outweighs the potential risk to the fetus. It is not known if Sitavig is excreted in breast milk; however, systemic absorption is minimal.
In a controlled clinical trial Sitavig’s most common side effects (greater than or equal to 1%) were: headache (3%), dizziness (1%), lethargy (1%), gingival pain (1%), aphthous stomatitis (1%), application site pain (1%), application site irritation (1%), erythema (1%) and rash (1%). In the same trial these side effects ranged from 0%-3% for placebo.
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch.com or call 1-800-FDA-1088.