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Oral Herpes and Throat Symptoms: Prevention, Treatment, and Coping

Oral herpes, mouth herpes, and orolabial herpes are some of the most searched topics on the Internet (though they are the same thing). And why not when almost 50% of the US population suffers from oral herpes at least once in their life?

Do you know that almost 90% of people are affected by oral herpes by the age of 50? That’s likely why you’re on this page, where you will learn everything about oral herpes symptoms, prevention, treatment, and how to cope with oral herpes or cold sores in the mouth. 

What is Oral Herpes?

Oral herpes is a viral infection which is caused by HSV-1 virus. It causes sores around the lips and mouth. These cold sores on the lips and mouth are also called fever blisters. It can occasionally lead to throat symptoms, causing discomfort and inconvenience.

HSV stands for Herpes Simplex virus, a highly contagious virus primarily transmitted through close contact with the infected person, such as kissing, sharing utensils, using the same toothbrushes (a very unhealthy practice), or using other personal items like towels.

It is very prevalent in both children and adults and at Peace of Mind Dental Studio, we witness many cases of oral herpes. So, you can trust us to help you.

Throat Symptoms and Oral Herpes

Cold sores on the lips and herpes on the tongue are quite common, but this infection sometimes reaches your throat. Although it is rare, you must learn about the throat symptoms, which include:

Sore Throat: Oral herpes can cause sore throat, causing extreme discomfort and pain.

Difficulty Swallowing: With a sore throat, swallowing might become  daunting.

Hoarseness: Due to the inflammation and soreness, the voice might come out hoarse and raspy.

Swollen Glands: Enlarged lymph nodes in the neck may indicate throat involvement.

Prevention Strategies

The only way to treat oral herpes is to prevent it because it has no cure. Some of the ways to prevent mouth herpes include:

Avoid Close Contact

If you have any infected person at your home, avoid close contact with them, such as kissing or sharing personal items. Keep kids away from the infected person because kids are more prone to orolabial herpes. 

Practice Good Hygiene

Frequent handwashing and necessary oral hygiene practices are essential to prevent transmission and further infection. Touching the blisters and touching other body parts afterward spread the infection further.

Use Lip Protection

Sunburn on the lips can trigger herpes outbreaks, so use lip balm with sunscreen to protect your lips.

Limit Stress

Stress can be a significant factor in causing mouth herpes outbreaks. So, manage your stress to avoid herpes and other health issues such as anxiety, depression, and insomnia. 

Now, you must be wondering that kids don’t stress, so how come they catch the infection? In most cases, kids catch oral herpes infection from adults. So, you must maintain a safe distance from kids if you or any other family member is suffering from the infection. 

Oral Herpes Treatment

Oral herpes cannot be cured, but your discomfort can be reduced thanks to the following treatment options:

Antiviral Medications

Consult us at Peace of Mind Dental Studio, Chandler, and get your antiviral prescription for oral herpes, which will help reduce the severity and duration of cold sores. 

Pain Relief

You can also rely on over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, which will help alleviate the pain.

Cold Sore Therapy

Cold sore therapy is a laser therapy that reduces the progression of blisters, eliminates the virus causing the outbreak, and reduces the healing time. It is a quick, painless treatment that is opted for by several of our patients due to its effective results.

Coping with Throat Symptoms

Follow these tips to cope with oral herpes and associated throat infections:

Rest: Cold sores cause fever, nausea, diarrhea, headache, bad breath, mouth ulcers, dehydration, etc. Thus, it is advised that you must rest plenty to help your body recover and heal quickly.

Stay Hydrated: Dehydration is a common symptom of cold sores. So, drink plenty of water and try to keep yourself hydrated.

Avoid Irritants: Throat discomfort can be extreme when suffering from cold sores. So, eat wisely. Do not consume spicy foods that might exaggerate your condition. 

Cold Sore Therapy at Peace of Mind Dental Studio

As the herpes outbreak is quite common, most patients seek help to reduce the discomfort, and at Peace of Mind Dental Studio, patient comfort is our only priority. 

Laser Cold Sore Therapy has gained significant popularity in Chandler as it helps reduce healing time, discomfort, and the chances of getting infected again. 

It is a therapy which only takes 5-10 minutes. A low-power laser is hovered over the infected area, killing the virus. It is painless and affordable. Though it doesn’t treat herpes, it is one of the most effective treatments. 

At Peace of Mind Dental Studio, we have witnessed improvements in our patients. The reduced discomfort is worth it.

For more details, book an appointment today!

Written by Dr. Silverman

Dr. Silverman is the co-founder of Peace of Mind Dental, a Chandler Arizona, general dentistry practice.