Articles on: Cold Sores

When should I get treatment for cold sores?

Cold sores can appear up to 20 days after you have been infected. The sore is likely to appear where the virus initially entered your body.

Cold Sores can occur in stages:

You may first experience a tingling, burning, itching or dry and irritated feeling around the infected area
Approximately 12 to 24 hours later the area becomes red, swollen or painful and a blister or ‘sore patch’ may appear
The blister breaks open and may fluid come out, lasting up to 3 days
A scab then forms on the sore, which may crack or bleed

You may also experience symptoms such as:

Red or swollen gums
Burning and pain inside your mouth
Swollen glands in your neck
Sore throat
Pain when swallowing
Fever or muscle aches
Upset stomach
If you or your partner(s) have any of the above symptoms, or your partner tells you they have cold sores or genital herpes, you should either get tested or seek treatment immediately.

At the first sign of an outbreak or one of the symptoms mentioned, it is recommended to seek treatment as soon as possible to prevent symptoms from worsening and spreading.

If you experience multiple cold sore outbreaks throughout the year, our Partner Doctors can prescribe you with up to three months of chronic suppression treatment.

Updated on: 21/02/2024

Was this article helpful?

Share your feedback


Thank you!