Most cold sores heal on their own without prescription medicines. But some antiviral medicines (such as acyclovir or famciclovir) when taken orally (tablets) may
be helpful in reducing the frequency and severity of attacks of
Doctors may prescribe oral antiviral medicines that
can be taken daily to prevent future outbreaks of cold sores. These medicines
may also be given during periods of increased risk of getting cold sores
(such as during cosmetic surgery or sun exposure).
Does the thought of succumbing to the dentist's chair send a jolt of anxiety through your body? When it comes to triggering a fear response, few things can set people off like an upcoming trip to the dentist.
That fear can set in early. Threatening comments from a parent, such as "If you don't brush your teeth, you'll have to go to the dentist," can leave a lasting negative impression. More common, a painful experience at the dentist's office during childhood triggers anxiety that carries over...
A lower dose of oral acyclovir is needed for people who have
reduced kidney function.
Famciclovir (Famvir) is sometimes used to treat the herpes virus that causes
cold sores and genital herpes (as well as the virus that causes shingles). This medicine is available only by
prescription and is taken orally in tablet form.
If you are pregnant or nursing, you should talk with your doctor
before taking famciclovir.
This medicine is not recommended for people who have had an
allergic reaction to it in the past.
Possible mild side effects include itching, fever, headache,
fatigue, nausea, or diarrhea.
Valacyclovir (Valtrex) capsules are available by prescription only. It is absorbed by the body much better than
some other antiviral medicines (such as acyclovir).