Laser treatment for cold sores in St Petersburg, FL
What are cold sores?
Cold sores, also known as fever blisters, are caused by the Herpes Simplex virus (HSV-1), which enters the body through a break in the skin. They are characterized by a small cluster of blisters in or around the mouth. The blisters eventually burst leaving painful, ulcerated lesions. The virus lays dormant in the nerve ganglion and outbreaks are brought on by stress, be it physical or mental. Common triggers are sun exposure, a fever/weakened immune system, even mental stress. The virus can be spread by contact with an infected person’s saliva or the fluid in the blisters through sharing of utensils, razors, kissing, etc.
What are the symptoms of a cold sore?
Most people experience prodromal (warning) symptoms. Before the blister appears, you may notice a burning, tingling sensation in the area. The blister usually appears within 1 to 2 days, then the blisters rupture and ulcerate. They eventually crust over and heal. The entire process usually takes as long as 2 weeks and can be very painful. If the blisters are on the lips, they can be very unsightly, in addition to the discomfort.
How do you treat a cold sore?
Cold sores can be treated with over the counter creams, as well as prescription medication from your physician. These treatments work to ease the pain associated with the outbreak and can lessen the duration by a couple of days. Cold sores can however be treated more effectively with dental lasers.
How do lasers treat cold sores?
Dental lasers heat and kill the virus. If used in the initial stages, when you get the tingling, warning signs, lasers can prevent the outbreak altogether. If the blisters have already formed, lasers can dry them up, eliminate the pain and drastically reduce the duration. The heat energy from the laser stimulates the body’s immune system (photobiostimulation) to speed up the healing process. Once infected with the virus, it will stay in your body and continue to cause outbreaks. With repeated laser treatments however, the frequency of those outbreaks is diminished, and in some patients, eliminated.
Benefits of Laser Treatment for Cold Sores
- Only lasers can prevent outbreaks before they occur
- Relief is immediate
- Faster healing without further discomfort
- 5 minute treatment versus days or weeks of ointments or medication
- No anesthesia required
- Recurrence of sores at same location lessens in both frequency and intensity
- Treatment is affordable and may be covered by your dental insurance
We know how painful and disfiguring cold sores can be, and we ask you to give us a call at (727) 345-1774 as soon as you feel the initial symptoms, so we can help you avoid those outbreaks before they occur. Our objective is to get you in the same day!
If it is after business hours, please follow the instructions for dental emergencies, and we will make every effort to take care of you.
“Dr. Marquez was a lifesaver! I started feeling like I was getting a cold sore on my lip a few days before my wedding. She fit me into her schedule and used her laser to treat it and I never got a cold sore. She and her staff were super friendly, professional, and helpful. The office was clean and conveniently located. Highly recommend!” –Rosemary H.