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The Relationship Between Cold Sores and Oral Health


Posted on 10/20/2016 by Brandon Cooley
A man embarrassed of his smile, because he's suffering from cold sores!
Cold sores, one of the ultimate destroyers of confidence. These painful, fluid filled blisters form on the outside of your mouth and there isn't much you can do about it. When you are first infected, you may experience cold or flu-like symptoms for about a week. Sores may or may not be present on the first infection, but once the virus is in your body, you can't get rid of it. But you can limit your outbreaks.

What is a Cold Sore?

A cold sore is a painful blister caused by the herpes simplex virus 1. Often thought to be an adult virus, it is actually contracted at an early age, even as young as infancy. The virus is passed from person to person through a kiss or by sharing a cup or fork. It can be spread even if a cold sore isn't present, but you feel as though one may be coming. Unfortunately, there is no cure.

Dental Treatments

Visiting the dentist regularly is important to your oral health, but cold sores can play into your ability to do so. Some dental procedures can aggravate your mouth, causing a sore to form. If you have a sore at the time of your appointment, you may need to reschedule. Some dentists won't treat you while one is present.

What Can You Do?
Before you go to the dentist, ask about a prescription antiviral. This can help prevent an outbreak from happening due to a cleaning or other procedure.

At home, change your toothbrush every three to four months, or when the bristles start to fray, helping you to limit the amount of outbreaks you experience. Your toothbrush can harbor the virus. Another suggestion is to have two toothbrushes and alternate between the two of them, allowing the bristles to dry thoroughly.

If you suffer from cold sores, contact our office about their policies. Schedule appointments when the virus is not active. Cold sores should not get in the way of keeping your teeth clean and healthy.


WHAT OUR PATIENTS ARE SAYING:
As a patient, three things stand out to me about Cooley Smiles - the great quality dental work, the cleanliness of the facility and thorough follow up. These are major differentiators that I look for in dental providers and to-date, I've always been satisfied with my experience. Thanks for the great patient care, Cooley Smiles team!

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