Oral herpes is caused by the herpes simplex virus, usually HSFV-1. Once the virus infects someone, then he becomes a lifetime carrier. However, the symptom takes a while to show up. Mastering the fever blisters stages will calm you as the infection heightens and eventfully fades way. Below are the five stages of the cold sores:
First Stage: Tingling Phase
If you experience a mysterious tingling in or close to your mouth, then possibly a cold sore is developing. It means the HSV has come into contact with your skin and thus producing the tightening of effect.
Tingling of an area is the first sign in the first stage that the fever blister is just about to surface. In addition, the affected area might also feel itchy or have a burning effect a few days later.
If you suspect oral herpes at this initial period, its best to begin treatment right away. Although it won’t stop a cold sore attack, it will suppress it severity and shorten your suffering period. The daily use of the oral medication is most helpful at stage one.
If the oral herpes stage one subjects you to a lot of pain, then the over the counter painkillers might give you some relief.
Second Stage: Blistering Phase
The tingling stage usually lasts for about a day or two. After which the infection progresses to the second stage, blistering phase. This second stage is characterized by the appearance of a small red bump or a group of such bumps.
The red bumps eventually get filled with fluid thus forming blisters. On careful observation, you will notice that the skin surrounding and beneath the clear fluid-filled blisters, has turned red. These painful swellings are usually visible in the area around the mouth, throat or even inside the mouth.
During this second stage, the victim experiences difficulty in eating owing to the sore blisters around the mouth. Once the mouth turns sore, it is vital that you keep it hydrated, thus you should drink a lot of water at this stage.
On the other hand, avoiding the following foods will benefit you too;
- Salty foods
- Hot liquids
The sensitive and painful blisters may persist for around two days.
Third Stage: Weeping Phase
The breaking of the red blisters marks the weeping stage. Once the blisters burst, the fluids begin to ooze thus leaving behind the red and shallow open sores. The open sores will look like small cuts but very sensitive to touch. However, at this stage, the cold sores are highly contagious. Although the weeping phase lasts approximately 24 hours only, it’s the most painful period in the cold sore development.
However tempting the open sores feel to touch, avoid picking them at all cost. Such an act may cause the viral infection to spread to other parts and even invite a bacterial infection.
The Fourth Stage: Crusting Phase
The ulcerated sores last about a day before progressing to the crusting stage. At this stage, the previously weeping sores then begin to dry and thus develop a crust at the top. The drying blister will appear yellowish or brownish in color. The crust hardens into a scab. It will take about two or three days for the new skin to form beneath the already developed scab.
During the formation of the new skin layer, the victim experiences pain, dryness, and itching of the skin. The growing of the skin will prompt the scab to crack and bleed. However, picking at the drying blisters will prevent them from drying faster. Instead, you cold compresses will help.
Fifth Stage: Healing Phase
The healing stage is the last phase of the cold sore development. It the ordinary circumstances, the healing stage begins approximately 8 to ten days from the first time the cold sore symptoms show up.
When the body has regained control over the herpes simplex virus, the scabs start to fall off. The peeling off of the scab reveals a fresh underneath the skin, which initially appears reddish but eventually heals off without leaving any scar. It’s only the complete healing if the skin that forces the scab to fall off. Therefore you should refrain from removing the scab prematurely. Doing so may leave behind a mark in the blister’s place
It is important to beware of the cold sore development stages. It will help you to remain calm and approximate the healing period. In addition, you will also know how to manage oral herpes at each stage. By doing so you will stop the infection from not only spreading to other people but also other parts of your body.