Cold sores are clusters of small blisters on the lip and skin around or inside the mouth. Often the first sign of a coldsore is a spot that tingles, burns, or itches. A blister usually forms within 24 hours. The skin around the blisters can be red and inflamed. The blisters can break open, weep a clear fluid, and then scab over after a few days. Cold sores most often heal in 7 to 10 days without a scar. They are sometimes called fever blisters.
Cold sores are caused by a virus called the herpes simplex virus.
Cold sores most often go away on their own. But if they are severe, embarrass your child, or cause pain, your doctor may prescribe antiviral medicine to relieve pain and help prevent outbreaks.
Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd
Enter M961 in the search box to learn more about "Cold Sores in Children: Care Instructions".
Current as of: November 27, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
©2006-2018 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.