Knowledgeable, happy woman gets all the facts on cold sores.

Get up to speed
on all the facts
about cold sores.

You know you’ve heard them — those cold sore myths that spread almost as fast as the virus itself.

When it comes to treating a cold sore or fever blister, you’ll hear advice on everything from home remedies to lip balm cures. Learn the cold sore facts so you can face every cold sore with confidence — from the first tingle until it’s bye, bye blister.

Cold Sore Myths

 Myth: Cold sores are only contagious when you can see a blister.

Fact: Cold sores are contagious from the first tingle until it’s completely healed. Remember to take extra precautions to protect others from encountering the virus.

 Myth: The cold sore virus (Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1, HSV-1) cannot spread beyond the lip area.

Fact: HSV-1 is a form of the Herpes Simplex Virus that usually affects the lips or mouth, but can spread to the eyes or genitals.

 Myth: Everyone who contracts the cold sore virus will experience an outbreak.

Fact: While it’s likely that 90% of adults have been infected by the cold sore virus, not everyone gets cold sore outbreaks. Actually, only 20%-40% of people will experience cold sores.

 Myth: There is no way to shorten the healing time of a cold sore.

Fact: Some prescription medicines — as well as the over-the-counter medicines like Abreva — have been clinically proven to shorten the healing time of a cold sore.

 Myth: There is no over-the-counter treatment that can shorten the healing time of a cold sore.

Fact: The only docosanol-containing over-the-counter cold sore treatment clinically proven to shorten the duration of a cold sore is Abreva.

 Myth: Ingredients like camphor, menthol and phenol can heal a cold sore.

Fact: Though these common lip balms and ointments serve to temporarily relieve symptoms and moisturize the cold sore,they are not meant to block entry of the virus from spreading to

surrounding healthy skin cells.

 Myth: Ice helps cold sores heal faster.

Fact: Ice may temporarily provide relief from your symptoms and help reduce redness and swelling. But don’t expect it to speed the healing of your cold sore.

 Myth: Distilled vinegar prevents cold sore outbreaks.

Fact: Vinegar helps with many things but preventing cold sore outbreaks is not one of them.

 Myth: Alcohol or witch hazel kills the viruses in cold sores.

Fact: Alcohol and witch hazel are astringents that will dry out your cold sore. They are not clinically proven to speed the healing of a cold sore.

 Myth: Tea bags heal cold sores.

Fact: Put away the tea bags —unless you’re making tea. They will not make your cold sore go away faster.

Learn how Abreva works to shorten the healing time of your cold sore.

Find out which Abreva product is right for you.