Subject: Herbs for Cold Sores
Answered by: Christine Dennis

Question from: Simeen
Posted on: February 21, 2008

Would you be able to advise about herbs for cold sores and how to help the body so that they don’t reoccur? A family member of mine has them. It would be most appreciated. Is there any herb as well as diet that could help?

This question has been answered before and can be found at:

However, I would like to add that in my practice I have found that different people react differently to various remedies. The key factor when deciding what remedies are best for each person, seems to be in determining if a person needs cooling remedies (calming and sedating) or heating remedies (stimulating and warming). Therefore, what seems to help one person can aggravate another. I believe that the reasons for these differences may to due to the underlying factor that triggers the breakout as well as individual constitutions. Generally, for example, when a person who is highly stressed, over worked and lacks sleep, it is more likely that calming and sedating remedies that will help to soothe an aggravated nervous system to be more beneficial. Conversely, a person who suffers from a low immune system with frequent colds, lacks motivation and movement, is more likely to benefit from warming and stimulating remedies.

The previously suggested anti-viral and nervine herbs such as lemon balm (Melissa off.) and St.John’s wort (Hypericum perfoliatum), are helpful in tea or tincture form and can be held in the mouth for a few minutes before swallowing. Essential oils can be diluted in a carrier oil such as olive oil, or better yet in an infused Lemon balm or St. John’s wort oil and applied frequently. Eucalyptus is my favourite cooling oil while lavender is my favourite warming oil. Apply every 10 minutes at first sign of tingling etc. Nervine herb teas such a lavender, catnip, lemon balm and chamomile are good for reducing anxiety, stress and other irritating effects on the nervous system. It is important to eliminate any foods sensitivities that might be causing flare ups as well.

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