Cold Sores In Your Child - Causes, Symptoms, Cure
Created by Faraz Mohammad Khan Updated on Apr 13, 2018
The first few years of a child's life are filled with new experiences. First tricycle ride, first icecream, first friend. However, a less than fun first experience may come up : a child's first cold sore.
What is a cold sore?
Cold sores, also known as fever blisters or oral herpes, are small blisters that form around the lips and mouth of a child. They can also appear on the chin, nose and cheeks. Typically, the blisters begin to ooze in a few days, then form a crust and heal completely within a week or two.
Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus type 1 and, despite their name, have nothing to do with cold. Cold sores are fairly common and about 20% of children aged between 5 to 18 get affected by it.
Causes of cold sore
- Illness and fever Your child's immune system is not as strong as that of an adult. Therefore, your child is more prone to cold sores when they are weakened by illness.
- Sun exposure When not protected by UV lotions or balms, your child has an increased risk of cold sores.
- Contact with infected person Your child can get cold sores if they come in close contact of the saliva or open lesions of an already infected person. This involves eating or drinking from same utensils or getting kissed by
Symptoms of cold sore
A kid's cold sore will generally start as a tingly itchy feeling on the lips or around the mouth which can develop into a blemish in a couple hours. This blemish then starts to redden and swell into a small bump or sore. In some cases, the infection can also cause fever, can reach to the gum making it red and swollen After initially infecting a child, the virus can lie dormant without any symptoms. This leaves a chance of reactivation during later life.
Treating cold sores
There is currently no cure for cold sores, but the good news is they heal on their own. Currently available medication can only slightly speed up the healing time. Parents can protect against cold sores' spread, relieve the kiddo's pain during a flare up and avoid possible triggers.
- Try to persuade your child from the instinct of touching or licking the blister
- Don't let your child share utensils, towels, etc. To avoid spreading
- Some pediatricians also suggest keeping children at home during the first week of the outbreak
- Apply UV lips balms on your child's lips during long hours of sun exposure
To summarise, cold sores are very common. There is no cure for a cold sore but it can be prevented and controlled by following simple precautions.
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