Understanding the Different Cold Sore Stages

Cold sores can last up to two weeks, without being treated early. Depending on the type of treatment that you get, and the stage of the cold sore has a lot to do with the healing time. Below you will find the cold sore stages, and what to expect during each of them.

If this is the first time you have ever gotten a cold sore, and it has reached the blister stage, you can still speed up the healing process.  Through most of the stages, the blister will be painful and will itch and burn.

As much as you will want to scratch it, don’t.  Doing so will open the blister and cause more pain.  It will probably also let the virus spread to another part of your lip.  You can treat the fever blister during any of these stages, and we will recommend the best treatment for each stage.

First Stage

 This will last one or two days.  Those people that have already had cold sores call it the ‘tingling’ stage.  Your skin where the blister will form may become tighter.

You will feel a tingling sensation, mild burning, or itching.  The spot on the lip will turn red, and can sometimes start to swell.

There are many treatments that you can use that will stop the blister from forming.  Tea tree oil is the best thing that you can use at this stage.  It has many healing properties, such as anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-biotic.

Second Stage

This stage is usually 2 to 4 days into the life of the sore.  This is when the blister starts to form.  You may get one blister, or you may get a clump of smaller blisters.  They start out as small lumps on the lip, and they are mildly painful.

The lump will grow, and your body will start trying to heal it.  The sore will fill with pus. This pus holds the virus, and if you scratch the blister, the pus may spread to other parts.

Cold Sore Stages

The best treatment at this stage is a product called HERP-B-GONE.  This product is made with 100% natural ingredients, and is specifically formulated to stop the virus in its tracks.

Third Stage

This stage will begin on the 4th or 5th day.  During this time, the cold sore blister will pop, and will form an open sore, or ulcer.  This is the most painful stage that you will experience.

A red-colored spot may appear around the blister, because of inflammation.  The best treatment that you can use now is one that includes some kind of pain medicine in it.

A treatment called Abreva is excellent at healing a cold sore at any stage.  It not only starts healing the blister, but it helps to quell the burning and itching also.  This is one of the most recommended treatments to use.

Fourth Stage

This will be the 5th to 8th day of the blister.  The sore will start to scab over at this time.  This means that the pus is starting to dry out, and a crust will form.  This is the scab itself.

The scab may start to hurt again, because it will be shrinking, as the blister is reaching the final stage.  If you do not use any moisturizing treatment on it, it will crack and bleed.

Compeed Invisible Cold Sore Patch review

The symptoms of this stage are burning and intense itching.  It is very important that you do not scratch it.  If you do, you will just break the blister open, and it will have to heal again.

There is a product called Compeed Invisible Cold Sore Patch that is very good to use at this stage.  It is a medicated patch that is mostly invisible.  It will not only cover the unsightly scab, but will also alleviate the pain, burning, itching and swelling that happen at this stage.

Fifth Stage

The final stage of the sore’s life.  This is usually 8 to 10 days after it starts, unless you have picked the scab open.  As the scab falls off, it may flake and will become swollen again.

The spot where the blister was, after the scab has completely fallen off, will be red or pink.  This will go away after about a week.

As this is the final stage of the cold sore, there is really no point in using anything for it, as it is just about done.  If you experience any pain at all, you can apply ice to it, or take an aspirin.  Very few people feel any pain at this stage.

As you can see, they go through very different stages.  Thankfully, there are plenty of over-the-counter cold sore products available that will help the sore to heal faster.  There are also products to kill the pain and itching.  Some actually do both at the same time.

The best time to treat a fever blister is when it first starts, but you can drastically reduce the healing time by treating it as soon as possible.  You can find cold sore relief at any stage, though.

The most important thing to remember is, no matter how badly you want to scratch it, don’t do it.  You don’t want to have to go through the healing process again.

You can use a remedy for the pain and itching, at any point in the sore’s lifespan.  The best time, of course, is at the first appearance, or feeling, of the cold sore stages. That way you can stop any progress in its tracks.