Cold Sores: How Essential Oils Can Help
Cold sores are an unsightly nuisances that plagued me for most of my adult life. They were terrible and huge, I got two and three at a time on my face (not just my lips!) I’ve been using essential oils for over a year now and realized I couldn’t remember the last time I had one. I had two small ones when I first started EO’s and they were stopped in their tracks; when used Thieves on one and Peppermint one the other. I happen to prefer Peppermint for the cooling and numbing effect it has. After realizing we are in the dead of winter and I haven’t had one, it got me wondering. Why is that? My health has improved dramatically over the last year from using EO’s. Could this be a happy side effect? I set out to find the answers. My hypothesis was my stress levels were down, so less to feed the virus. Here is the research I came across.
Cold sore triggers
- Emotional upset or stress.
- Physical stress and fatigue, including just being “run down.”
- Illnesses. This can include conditions like a cold, the flu or an upper respiratory infection.
- Menstruation or pregnancy. For some women, cold sores are more frequent around the time of their monthly periods.
- Immune system weakness or deficiency.
How often do cold sore breakouts occur?
- 5 to 10% of the general population experiences 6 or more outbreaks per year (Rooney 1993), with some people having as many as 12 or more (McCarthy 2012).
- Most people probably have somewhere between “less than 2” (Rooney 1993) and 4 (McCarthy 2012) per year.
- All told, somewhere between 16 to 38% of the general population suffers with these lesions. However, the number of cold sores that a person gets typically diminishes after the age of 35 years (Opstelten 2008). To the point where by their senior years, only 20% of people continue to experience them. (El Hayderi 2011)
- Some individuals may have a genetic susceptibility to getting cold sores. A paper by Kriesel, et. al. (2011) reported that their team identified a specific gene on chromosome 21 (gene C21orf91) as the likely source for this trait, although the mechanism by which it has its effect is not understood. They have given it the name Cold Sore Susceptibility Gene 1 (CSSG1).“We decided to look for possible seasonal trends for when people tend to experience cold sores/fever blisters the most. Our chart below shows how often people searched Google using the key words “cold sores.” (We’re making the assumption that few people have an interest in this topic unless they’re looking for solutions for their own current problems.)” (1)
- As you can see, this activity peaks during the winter months. That seems to make sense considering that it’s a time of year when people are often stressed (such as from a hectic holiday season) or exposed to environmental conditions (cold, wind, dryness) that can result in lip chapping. (Both are known as triggers for sore formation.) Some people are more prone to developing cold sores than others, especially individuals who are exhausted, sick or exposed to excessively cold winds, sun or heat. (2)
Essential Oils known to Combat Cold Sores (1)
- Tea tree
- Chamomile (Roman and German)
- Melissa (lemon balm)DIY Synergistic Cold Sore & Protective Lip Gloss (1)Ingredients:
- Lip gloss base:
- This DIY lip gloss will protect your lips from future outbreaks while also helping you to heal any current cold sores.
- 1 ounce white beeswax
- 2 tablespoons sweet almond oil
- 10 drops jojoba oil
- 5 drops carrot seedMake a blend of the following ratio:
- Essential oil base:
- 8 drops geranium
- 8 drops tea tree
- 6 drops german chamomile
- 5 drops lavender
- 3 drops lemonDirections:
- Combine essential oils together. We’ll later add it to the lip gloss base.
- Melt your beeswax using a double boiler (also called Bain-Marie method).
- Once melted add almond oil, stirring as you combine.
- Now add jojoba & carrot seed oils
- Add 20 drops of your synergistic essential oil blend from above
- Let cool and add mixture to a small circular glass container
- Apply three times daily.
My point with all this research was to find out why I dramatically has less to no outbreaks. Obviously, I believe EO’s have changed my life but once I started researching this I realized two things. My health has dramatically improved in the last year with help from EO’s. And the three oils I use daily have actually been preventatives in keeping the virus at bay. My initial theory was my stress level is down and therefore I am no longer triggering the virus. Yes, my stress is down and my immunity is up so therefore the virus is having a harder time breaking through. What I realized while researching is that each of these oils has Geranium, Bergamot, and Rose; three oils used to treat herpes! Also included in one is Myrrh and Hyssop. Royal Hawaiian Sandalwood is also in all three oils, one of its uses to calm and ground you. So again, I intuitively chose oils to help relax me, which in turn brought my stress level down and seemingly suppressed the virus. I am not saying you should use these oils to prevent cold sores, I am saying that daily use of EO’s helped me to regain my health. You will have to do your own research to see which oils can best help you in your own unique situation.
If you don’t know where to start contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can discuss creating an oil map made especially for you! If you mention this blog (yldaniele) I will give you special discounted pricing!
Daily preventative measures helping, even if I didn’t know that when I chose to use these oils daily. EO’s are adaptogenic, meaning EO’s adapt and change depending on what your body needs! EO’s can do this because they are natural, unlike medicine. That is why you will often read each body is unique and responds differently to an essential oil than someone else. Your body takes from the EO what it needs and no more, because the EO is trying to bring your body into balance. This is why I often list many oils to help with certain issues. Sometimes you may have to find the correct oil for your body.
I use two to three oils on a regular daily basis; Dream Catcher diffused at night, Magnify Your Purpose on my wrists, and on most days White Angelica over my heart. I honestly use more than this depending on the day and my situations, but these are my mainstays.
Teeth, Animated. animated-teeth.com/cold_sores. animated-teeth.com. [Online] 2000-2016.
Loren. essentialoilsanctuary.com. [Online] June 2, 2015.