What Are the Implications of Cold Sores Inside the Mouth?

Man putting oldsore cold sore oil on his cold sore on the mouth.

Man putting oldsore cold sore oil on his cold sore on the mouth.

Cold sores can be very irritating. It starts off with that horrible tingling and burning sensation. But it doesn’t stop there. A day or two after, a fluid-filled blister appears on the surface of the skin which normally last for 1-2 weeks. Not only this but most treatments are ineffective.

Well, imagine this scenario but instead of the cold sore being on your face, the cold sore is inside the mouth. This means that involuntary behaviours such as swallowing can be extremely painful. This is not something you should “put up with”. In this blog we will explain just how bad these cold sores in the mouth can be, as well as ways to help relieve some of the pain and heal the cold sore quicker.

How Bad Are Cold Sores Inside the Mouth?

Cold sores inside the mouth are not deadly, but they can be very painful and uncomfortable, although a cold sore can be sore until it has fully healed, once the cold sore stage is in the crusting stage there can sometimes be some relief from the pressure and discomfort caused by the fluid build-up. However, during this cold sore stage the cold sore itself can still be tender and sensitive to touch, as the skin around the cold sore is typically inflamed and irritated.

If you have a cold sore in the mouth it can interfere with daily activities such as eating and speaking. Practical examples of how bad they can be include:

Cold Sores Making It Difficult to Eat & Drink

If you have cold sores inside the mouth, it can make it painful to eat and drink, especially if the cold sores are located on the tongue or on the roof of the mouth. Imagine craving your favourite food, but a nasty cold sore is preventing you from fully enjoying it! This pain caused by the cold sores can be exaggerated by spicy, acidic, or salty foods.

Furthermore, cold sores can also cause swelling and inflammation around the lips and mouth. This swelling can make it difficult to open the mouth wide enough to eat certain foods, such as sandwiches or burgers. In some cases, the swelling can also make it difficult to swallow food, especially if the cold sore is located near the back of the throat.

A woman with a cold sore on the mouth

Cold Sores Inside the Mouth Can Cause Speech Difficulties

Cold sores inside of the mouth or on the tongue can make it difficult to pronounce certain sounds or to speak clearly, especially if the cold sores are large or located on the tip or sides of the tongue. Additionally, cold sores on the roof of the mouth can also interfere with speech. This can make it difficult to articulate words and can cause a lisp or other speech impediments.

Oral Herpes Causing Discomfort and Pain

Oral herpes can make it difficult to focus on daily activities and can cause a lot of distress.

As well as cold sores causing tingling, burning, itching and pain, cold sores in the mouth can also cause emotional distress as well as physical stress.

A man is uncomfortable because of a cold sore inside the mouth.

Risk of Infection With Cold Sores Inside the Mouth

    Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus, this can be contagious. If someone with cold sores inside their mouth shares utensils or drinks, they can spread the virus to others. This is because the virus can survive on these surfaces and remain infectious for up to several hours or even days, depending on the surface and the environment.

    When an infected person uses a shared item, the virus can be left behind on the surface of the equipment. If another person uses the same item without properly cleaning or disinfecting it, they can pick up the virus and become infected.

    Once a person is infected with the herpes simplex virus, it can remain dormant in their body for long periods of time. However, certain triggers such as stress, illness, hormonal changes, or exposure to sunlight can cause the virus to reactivate and lead to the formation of cold sores.

    It is important to note that not everyone who is infected with the herpes simplex virus will experience cold sores. However, they can still spread the virus to others even if they do not have visible symptoms.

    Cold Sores Causing Psychological Distress

      Cold sores can cause embarrassment and self-consciousness, which can lead to anxiety and depression. There are many ways that cold sores can cause psychological distress.

      • Negative Self-Image:

      Cold sores can make a person feel self-conscious and insecure about their appearance. This can lead to a negative self-image and low self-esteem, which can further impact their mental health.

      • Anxiety:

      Fear of a cold sore outbreak, especially before a special event or social gathering, can cause anxiety and stress. This can make it difficult to enjoy social situations and lead to feelings of isolation.

      • Depression:

      Chronic cold sore outbreaks can lead to depression and a loss of interest in activities a person once enjoyed. This can be especially true if the cold sores impact their personal or professional life.

      • Social Isolation:

       A person with cold sores may feel the need to isolate themselves from others to avoid the embarrassment of an outbreak. This can lead to social isolation and feelings of loneliness.

      Should You Use Cold Sore Cream for Cold Sores in the Mouth?

        It is not recommended to use creams or ointments on cold sores inside the mouth. Not only are most cold sore creams ineffective, but these products can be difficult to apply, and you may accidentally swallow it. If you swallow this cream, it can cause stomach pain and diarrhoea. In some cases, swallowing this can lead to more serious symptoms such as dizziness, confusion, or seizures.

        If you or someone you know has swallowed cold sore cream, it is important to seek medical attention immediately, especially if symptoms are severe or if the cream contains any ingredients that could be harmful if ingested.

        Celiac Disease Causing Cold Sores Inside the Mouth

        Cold sores in the mouth can be more common in people who have celiac disease, this is a digestive disorder that affects the body’s ability to absorb nutrients from food. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder that causes damage to the lining of the small intestine when gluten is consumed.

        One study published in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology found that people with celiac disease were more likely to experience oral mucosal lesions, including cold sores in the mouth. The study also found that people with celiac disease who followed a strict gluten-free diet had a lower prevalence of oral mucosal lesions than those who did not follow a gluten-free diet.

        It is unclear why people with celiac disease may be more prone to cold sores inside the mouth, but it may be related to the immune system abnormalities that can occur with the condition. Celiac disease can cause inflammation and damage to various parts of the body, including the mouth, which can make it easier for the herpes simplex virus to enter the body and cause cold sore outbreaks.

        While the exact link between celiac disease and cold sores inside the mouth is still being studied, it’s important for people with celiac disease to be aware of the potential risks and take steps to manage their condition. This may involve following a strict gluten-free diet, which can help reduce inflammation and other symptoms associated with celiac disease.

          Eczema may cause cold sores in the mouth. This is because the condition can weaken the skin barrier and make it easier for the herpes simplex virus to enter the body.

          Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is a common skin condition that causes red, itchy, and dry skin. The condition is believed to be caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors and can affect people of all ages. While eczema typically affects the skin, it can also cause symptoms in the mouth and other mucous membranes.

          One study published in the Journal of Dermatological Science found that people with eczema were more likely to experience recurrent herpes simplex virus infections, including cold sores inside the mouth. The study also found that people with eczema who experienced recurrent herpes simplex virus infections had lower levels of natural killer cells, which are a type of immune cell that helps the body fight viral infections.

          The link between eczema and cold sores inside the mouth may be related to the damage that eczema can cause to the skin barrier. When the skin is damaged, it can make it easier for the herpes simplex virus to enter the body and cause an outbreak. Additionally, people with eczema may be more susceptible to viral infections due to immune system abnormalities.

          What to Do if You Get a Cold Sore in the Mouth?

          If you get a cold sore inside the mouth it is important to stay hydrated. You should make sure you drink plenty of water and other fluids, as this can help to keep your mouth moist and prevent dehydration, which can make cold sores symptoms worse. Additionally, maintaining good oral hygiene is essential in preventing the spread of cold sores in the mouth. Brushing your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush can help remove any food particles and plaque that may trigger the outbreak of cold sores. Flossing daily can also help remove any debris between teeth and prevent the growth of bacteria that could lead to a cold sore. It is important to replace your toothbrush regularly, especially after a cold sore outbreak, to prevent reinfection. Additionally, using an antiviral mouthwash recommended by your dentist may help kill the virus and prevent further spread of cold sores. Also, avoid cold sore triggering factors such as stress and fatigue.

          To guarantee effective prevention of cold sores, we highly recommend pre-ordering helfi, our revolutionary sachet containing 100% natural ingredients. Helfi provides your body with essential nutrients to combat the formation of cold sores, while also promoting overall health and well-being. Don't let cold sores dictate your life any longer; take action and pre-order helfi today. Additionally, to stay informed on the latest news and updates regarding cold sores, we encourage you to follow oldsore on Instagram.

           Pouring water into a cup to stay hydrated with a cold sore.