* Essential oils are a lesser known option for the treatment of cold sores
* Many essential oils have antiviral properties and can speed up recovery
* Pure oils should be diluted in a carrier oil before they can be applied to the skin
There are a number of well known options when it comes to dealing with cold sores. From carrying a medicated, over-the-counter chapstick to pads placed over the cold and prescription medication, the herpes simplex virus is a condition with many treatment options. However, recently many people have been turning to the use of essential oils as a natural remedy. Many of these wide-reaching oils boast antiviral properties while others can help prevent inflammation and speed up the recovery process.
It’s important to note that to use essential oils in a topical capacity, you must first dilute them in a carrier oil so the pure oil doesn’t contact and further irritate the skin. There are a number of choices when it comes to diluting your oils, including jojoba oil, olive oil and, most popular of all, coconut oil. This high quality and budget-friendly coconut oil is a great option for mixing with essential oils in the treatment of cold sores.
1. Tea Tree Essential Oil
Tea tree essential oil is one of the most useful bottles you can have in your arsenal. That’s especially true when it comes to treating cold sores. The oil’s antiviral properties have been shown to be effective on the herpes simplex virus. Tea tree essential oil is also antiseptic and anti-inflammatory, which makes it ideal for keeping the open wound clean. Simply dilute the oil in a carrier oil (like the coconut oil mentioned above) and dab the solution on your cold sore twice a day.
2. Eucalyptus Essential Oil
Eucalyptus oil is certainly one of the most calming available in terms of its scent and the feeling of the oil on the skin. That’s why it feels so nice when applied to active cold sores. However, some studies have also shown that eucalyptus can reduce the duration of a cold sore outbreak. You can apply eucalyptus essential oil diluted in coconut oil up to 4 times per day.
3. Ginger Essential Oil
It might seem counterintuitive to apply spicy, warm ginger oil to your cold sore, but some lab studies have shown the root does minimize cold sore symptoms. So using the oil may help your sore heal faster than normal. It can also soothe the irritation, helping you to feel better while the ginger works its magic.
4. Roman Chamomile Essential Oil
Chamomile oil isn’t just good for inducing sleepy time feelings. It’s also soothing on the skin and has been shown to possess antiviral properties for combating the herpes simplex virus, including drug-resistant strains. Just be sure to keep chamomile on hand for whenever a cold sore outbreak strikes as this essential oil is most effective when used at the first sign of symptoms.
5. Anise Essential Oil
The same study that showed the effectiveness of chamomile essential oil in combating cold sores also found anise essential oil works to stop cold sore infections. In addition to its antiseptic properties, this oil can also be used for stress relief. And as many cold sore sufferers know, stress only exacerbates the virus, so eliminating such stressful feelings may help your body heal the sores quicker.
6. Peppermint Essential Oil
What isn’t peppermint essential oil good for? This miracle essential oil strikes yet again with its use in fighting cold sores. Some studies found that peppermint is effective in reducing the symptoms of a cold sore outbreak and one study went as far as to say peppermint essential oil could actually kill an activated virus. Invest in this 4-ounce bottle and reap all the benefits of peppermint essential oil.
7. Oregano Essential Oil
After studies completed in 1996 concluded that oregano essential oil has a significant effect on the herpes simplex virus, it should come as little surprise that it’s now one of the most popular choices for fighting cold sores. This oil can be applied, in a diluted form, to the site of a cold sore to provide symptom relief. Oregano essential oil also fights against further inflammation and speeds up recovery times.