5 Stages of Cold Sores Outbreak

5 Stages of  Cold Sores Outbreak

Cold sores progress through 5 stages during a 7-10 day period. If you know what is coming, it will help you be prepared.

Cold Sore Stage 1: Initial Symptoms

For more than 85% of cold sore sufferers, outbreaks often begin with symptoms such as a tingling, tightness, soreness, or itching around the lips (days 1-2 of an outbreak).


Cold Sore Stage 2: Progression

As the infection develops (days 2-4 of an outbreak), clumps of red, fluid-filled blisters begin to form. This is the result of the virus waking up, multiplying, and the body beginning to fight back.


Cold Sore Stage 3: Rupture

On day 4 or 5 of an outbreak, the blisters can burst open and may be very painful. At this point, the exposed and ulcerated sores will begin to scab over as the body enters the healing process.


Cold Sore Stage 4: Scabbing

Around days 5-8 of an outbreak, scabs form. These are often itchy, may crack open, and can bleed. It means you’re nearing the end of the flare-up, so don’t pick at them.


Cold Sore Stage 5: Resolution

Once the body has the virus back under control, the scabs will begin to peel off. For most people, this occurs 8-10 days from onset of symptoms without medication. After the scabs fall off, you may notice the skin underneath is pink or reddish for a while–that is to be expected.





About Sara Bakhshaei

Dr Sara Bakhshaei ParsiTeb Company Researcher
Dr Sara Bakhshaei is a PhD. graduate Agroecologist from the Ferdowsi University of Mashhad. She has done researches in some agricultural and health fields such as Plant Ecology, Agroecology, Data Analysis, Crop production, LCA and Pharmaceutical effects of medicinal plants. She completed her researches as an Internship period in IFF institute(Institute of Social Ecology) in Vienna, Austria. Since 2016 she works as a senior researcher at Parsiteb herbal pharmaceutical company. She has 8 years of work experience as a university lecturer in Iran and published more than 100 articles in her research fields. Now she continues her study in the field of Phytomedicine at the Boku University of Vienna.

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