I was amazed to learn that more than 50 million adults in the US have the Herpes Simplex virus! For such a common ailment, it certainly is a well-kept secret. The only difference between Herpes Simplex I and Herpes Simplex II is location. One occurs orally (cold sores) and the other occurs in the genital area. I know from clients that oral herpes can be transmitted to the genitals and that genital herpes can be transmitted to the mouth. I’m sure you already know that stress can trigger an “outbreak”.
I think that there are two issues you can deal with herbally. The first is to lessen how often the sores occur, and the second is to heal the sore as quickly as possible when it does happen.
Lessening the frequency of “outbreaks” can be managed by reducing stress and strengthening the immune system. Astragalus Root is an herb from Traditional Chinese Medicine which is a wonderful tonic for the immune system. Burdock Root is another herb I often recommend with Astragalus, to support liver function. A diet of organic vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, fish, meats & dairy products is important to maintaining health and a strong immune system. Highly processed foods are stressful to our systems, requiring our bodies to work hard for minimal nutrition, so try to avoid them as much as possible.
When an “outbreak” does occur, there are a number of herbs that may be helpful. Echinacea will give your system an extra boost to fight the infection. Many people report that Tea Tree Oil, applied to the site as soon as the pre-sore tingling begins may shorten the duration of the outbreak. Lemon Balm is another herb that has shown good results, but I’ve been told that the alcohol in the tincture burns. So, I make a lemon balm glycerite which can be applied directly to the site (and it doesn’t burn!), as well as taken internally. Chickweed, and Violet Root are two other commonly used herbs for Herpes outbreaks. You can make a tea to drink, use the tea as a wash, or purchase a salve that contains a variety of these ingredients. I include several of them in the salve I make for Herpes outbreaks, Simplex Salve 1-2-3, and I have received glowing reports from clients who have used it. One woman even called me and said, “Wow! I never had a sore go in reverse before!” You can purchase the salve, as well as most of the herbs & tinctures, on the Products page of this website.