Skip to main content
Accessibility|Contact|Privacy|Terms of Service

Lip Herpes - Also Known as Cold Sores

  • Published: 2009-03-29 (Revised/Updated 2013-12-06) : Author: Disabled World
  • Synopsis: Information regarding cold sores and fever blisters common terms for the symptoms caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus.

Main Document

"HSV 1 is often spread by kissing, and after HSV 1 infection takes place a cold sore outbreak can appear within a week or so or may never appear at all."

Cold sore, fever blister, herpes. The first two are generally thought to be typical conditions, benign, a part of life. The third condition has a darker reputation: a dreaded disease and one often linked to sexual behavior.

In reality, all three conditions are the same. Cold sores and fever blisters are actually common terms for the symptoms caused by herpes.

To put it simply, a cold sore is herpes.

Specifically, a cold sore is Herpes Simplex Virus 1, or HSV 1 (cold sores are sometimes caused by Herpes Simplex Virus 2, the strain of the herpes virus that typically causes genital herpes, but this is rare).

Cold sores, or fever blisters, occur when the herpes virus travels along nerve paths and appears at the surface of the skin.

Are all instances of cold sores herpes

There are blemishes that appear on the skin that aren't cold sores; but if the blemish is a cold sore, or a fever blister if you prefer, then it's herpes.

Surprised? Dubious? These kinds of reactions aren't unusual on learning that herpes causes cold sores, and that's almost certainly due to the negative association that the word 'herpes' has for some people. Why is this? Yes, there is a variation of the herpes virus that typically causes genital outbreaks (HSV 2), but the strain of herpes that causes cold sores, HSV 1, can also be spread to the genitals; and herpes in general is an exceptionally common condition: among US adults, roughly 20% have HSV 2, and up to 90% have HSV 1.

HSV 1 is often spread by kissing, and after HSV 1 infection takes place a cold sore outbreak can appear within a week or so or may never appear at all. Many people with HSV 1 don't have cold sore outbreaks, and there's no absolute reason why some HSV 1 infected people have cold sore outbreaks and others don't.

The first HSV 1 outbreak a person has can be the most uncomfortable, with a fever and a general ill feeling sometimes accompanying the initial appearance of cold sores. Subsequent outbreaks are typically less severe, aided by the body's production of herpes antibodies, which help fight future outbreaks more effectively.

Treatment for cold sore outbreaks is available and typically shortens the duration of an outbreak, but treatment for a cold sore isn't necessary as outbreaks will eventually clear on their own. See some home treatments for cold sores.

While cold sore outbreaks are usually not a serious condition, it is possible to spread the HSV 1 virus to the eye(s). This condition is known as ocular herpes, and unlike a general cold sore outbreak, ocular herpes requires medical attention.

Ocular herpes is not common, but it does happen.

Ocular herpes usually occurs from a mouth to eye contact, such as placing a contact lens into the mouth to moisturize it, and then placing the contact lens into the eye.

Don't go from your mouth or someone else's mouth into your eye(s)! Most people likely wouldn't do this anyway, but it's worth reinforcing.

Similar Topics

1 : 66% of World Population Under 50 Infected with Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 : WHO.
2 : Can You Get Shingles Again : PolyDNA.
3 : Cold Sore Treatment: Abreva Conceal : GlaxoSmithKline.
4 : Study Shows Shingles Vaccine is Safe : Kaiser Permanente.
5 : Genital Herpes Vaccine Ineffective in Women : NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
From our Herpes Simplex Virus section - Full List (12 Items)

Submit disability news, coming events, as well as assistive technology product news and reviews.

Loan Information for low income singles, families, seniors and disabled. Includes home, vehicle and personal loans.

Famous People with Disabilities - Well known people with disabilities and conditions who contributed to society.

List of awareness ribbon colors and their meaning. Also see our calendar of awareness dates.

Blood Pressure Chart - What should your blood pressure be, and information on blood group types/compatibility.

1 : Telemedicine Helps Overcome Healthcare Gender Based Barriers
2 : Screen Reader Plus Keyboard Helps Blind, Low-Vision Users Browse Modern Webpages
3 : Our Digital Remains Should be Treated with Same Care and Respect as Physical Remains
4 : Tungsten: Concern Over Possible Health Risk by Human Exposure to Tungsten
5 : Student Loan Discharge Process for Disabled Veterans Made Easier
6 : Growing Bone and Cartilage Tissues for Humans from Flaxseed Like Particles
7 : Throat Reflexes Differ in People with Tetraplegia and Sleep Apnea
8 : UTA Grant to Help Minority Students Link Assistive Technology with Disability Studies
9 : Body Probe as Thin as a Hair Has Imaging Function and Temperature Sensor
10 : Dripping Candle Wax Bone Disease (Melorheostosis) Cause Solved

Disclaimer: This site does not employ and is not overseen by medical professionals. Content on Disabled World is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. See our Terms of Service for more information.

Reporting Errors: Disabled World is an independent website, your assistance in reporting outdated or inaccurate information is appreciated. If you find an error please let us know.

© 2004 - 2018 Disabled World™