What Should Not Be Placed On Your Baby’s Cold Sore?
Though it’s not common for babies to have cold sores, at some point they may do. A cold sore is a small, red, fluid-filled blister that may form on your baby’s lips. They may either be single or may appear in clusters around the lips. This cold sore may cause your baby to feed less often, cry incessantly or become irritable. This is why you should know the proper ways of treating a cold sore so that it will go away within only a short period of time.
Cold sores, unlike what most people think, are not related to the common cold but are a result of another type of viruses, the herpes simplex virus Type 1. Type 1 herpes simplex virus is different from Type 2 herpes simplex virus in such a way that the latter is the cause of genital herpes.
So where does an infant get a cold sore? Cold sores can be transmitted to your baby from body fluids of an infected person. Perhaps your baby may have come in contact with another person who has cold sores or herpes simplex virus infection such as you, the baby’s father, or during birth (if the mother also has herpes simplex virus Type 1 infection). Thus, to prevent your baby from acquiring cold sores, anyone with cold sores should refrain from kissing your baby or sharing utensils and cups with him or her. If your baby had a previous episode of cold sores, you should avoid exposing him or her to the sun for long periods of time.
A cold sore usually goes away spontaneously with or without treatment within 7 to 10 days, but once a person experiences this kind of infection he or she may harbour it for a lifetime. The virus may become dormant or in a resting state for many years and may not manifest signs and symptoms but it may reappear from time if there are triggers such as fever, stress or sun exposure.
Newborns may actually get cold sores easily because at birth they may not have already developed some antibodies against diseases. This is why if your baby acquires cold sores during the first few six months of life, you should take your baby to a paediatrician (doctor for children) as soon as possible so that serious complications may be avoided such as damage to the organs of the body such as the brain. If your baby already has cold sores, you should not encourage him or her to touch his or her eyes so that the virus will not spread to the eyes, preventing a type of infection known as ocular herpes.
Cold sores usually go on their own spontaneously even without aggressive treatment. However, as a parent, you should find some effective ways on how to relieve pain. One home remedy that you can try is placing ice in your baby’s cold sore; this can help numb the pain. However, you should do it for only short periods of time so as to avoid frostbite. Another remedy you can try is to give him or her cool drinks or foods such as ice cream; however only a few babies will be able to take these cool drinks and foods.
If your baby is greater than six months of age, you can give a pain reliever such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Make sure you consult your doctor or a competent health professional first before administering such treatment to avoid over dosage which may also bring about serious complications. Aspirin should not be given to babies because this drug can increase the risk of having Reye’s syndrome.