Amino Acids: A Simple Way to Manage Herpes Simplex Virus-1

Cold sores can appear for a variety of reasons. The virus that causes cold sores, Herpes Simplex Virus-1, is an opportunistic infection, meaning it “attacks” your body when the immune system is already weakened. Some individuals who frequently get cold sores might attribute them to high stress situations, including:

• A cold or an infection
• Long exposure to sunlight
• Menstrual periods
• Having a tooth removed
• Emotional stress
• Digestive problems
• Traveler’s diarrhea
• Injury to the lips

Typically, a cold sore has five stages:

1. The tingling stage
2. The blister stage
3. The weeping stage
4. The scabbing stage
5. The healing stage

The prodrome, or tingling stage, is right before the sore actually makes an appearance. This is also the best time to start treatment. Many individuals have found success in treating cold sores using the amino acid Lysine. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, adults with active herpes infections can take 3,000 – 9,000 mg of Lysine per day in divided doses; to prevent recurrences, 1,000 mg 3 times per day.

Practicing good hygiene is essential to preventing the spread of HSV-1; if you are suffering from an outbreak, wash your hands often and avoid sharing utensils, towels, and razors, be mindful of open sores and skin contact. A healthy lifestyle can help to decrease the frequency of outbreaks. Using sunblock when you are spending extended periods of time in sun and applying chapstick to dry lips can also prevent recurrences.

References:
Medline, Herpes Simplex Virus
University of Maryland, Lysine

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