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    Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario on January 22, 2016


    Paula Bourelly, MD Dermatologist

    © 2016 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

    1. 1Watch for the early signs. You'll know you're getting another cold sore when you have a tingling, itchy feeling -- and maybe a little swelling -- on your lip or around your mouth.
    2. 2Call the doctor. Ask about treatment as soon as possible. Most cold sores go away by themselves, but your doctor can prescribe drugs to treat the virus from the inside, a cream or gel to fight on the outside, or both.
    3. 3Start treatment right away. If you wait, your cold sore can become a painful -- and longer-lasting -- blister.
    4. 4Soothe your symptoms. Over-the-counter pain-relievers can soothe pain and swelling. You can also hold an ice cube on your lip.
    5. 5Keep it moist. A cold sore will heal better if the area around it doesn't dry out.
    6. 6Don't panic if it's a special day. Your doctor may be able to give you a cortisone shot for the swelling. But don't forget to treat the virus, too.
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