Disclosure: I received the Zim’s USA Advanced Cold Sore Kit to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% my own.
Is your family like ours? You can go through the most sweltering of summers, the worst winter storm in history with everyone snowed in and the kids driving you bonkers, and aside from a cold now and again – there are no major health issues. That is …
Until School Starts
It never fails that every single year, usually before December 1 rolls around, one or both of the boys have somehow gotten a cold sore and brought it home to roost so to speak. If one of us contracts the herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) then all three of us end up suffering through it within a few weeks or up to a month of each other.
What the Herpes Is That?
I know, the minute you hear the word “herpes” you automatically think sexually transmitted disease. Not. That would be known as Herpes Simplex 2. The common cold sore – as shown in the image above – is an infection of the lips, mouth or gums that causes small, painful blisters commonly called a cold sore or a fever blister.
I’ve never had a full-blown blister (and neither have the boys) but we do get those teeny tiny blisters right in the corner of your mouth. I think I would rather have a huge blister on my lip than deal with the ones that pop up on the corners of your mouth and lips. If you open your mouth too far, it hurts and can sometimes crack and begin bleeding. Regular lip balm doesn’t work to help keep it moist – those teeny blisters soak that up like a plant that hasn’t been watered in three weeks. Gone in seconds. Because it is dry, and because it is annoying as h-e-double toothpicks, you constantly want to lick the corner of your mouth to moisten it so it doesn’t hurt. That’s not a good idea either, because then it can spread to the inside of your mouth and open up a whole bushel of other problems for you.
How Do You Get a Cold Sore?
Those little suckers spread like wild-fire throughout the classroom and the family if you aren’t careful. Everyday regular activities can pass them back and forth between parents and children. If you touch their dishes, towels, utensils, pencil or pen they had in their mouth – anything that could have come in contact with the cold sore. All it takes is just one contact and bam – you’ve got it.
Ways to Prevent Getting a Cold Sore
Nothing is a “sure-fire” method to preventing cold sores, but if you follow these few simple tips, it will greatly reduce your chances of getting one.
Apply sunblock or lip balm containing zinc oxide to your lips before you go outside.
A moisturizing balm to prevent the lips from becoming too dry may also help.
Avoid direct contact with herpes sores.
Wash items such as towels and linens in boiling hot water after each use.
Do not share utensils, straws, glasses, or other items if someone has oral herpes
The Zim’s Advanced Cold Sore Kit
Zim’s knows what you go through when you get a cold sore, and they have come up with an advanced two-step kit to help you keep those cold sores away! When I compared the active ingredient in the Zim’s Advanced Cold Sore Kit products versus the “leading lip balm” (not naming any names here!) the Zim’s product had more petrolatum in their products than the leading lip balm does.
• Maintain and Prevent •
The Zim’s Advanced Cold Sore maintain and prevent stick’s active ingredient is 47.95% Petrolatum (a skin protectant) in addition to the inactive ingredients which are Paraffin Wax, Mineral Oil, Cholesterol/Lanosterol Esters (Super Sterol), Carnauba Wax, Propylene Glycol, Purified Propolis Extract ACF®. Use daily, in place of your regular everyday lip balm, to help keep your lips moist.
• Treating the Symptoms •
The Zim’s Advanced Cold Sore treatment ointment can be used at the first sign of a cold sore. Use it to relieve dryness and soften the crusty scabs associated with cold sores and fever blisters. The active ingredient in the treatment ointment is 89.5% Petrolatum (a skin protectant) along with the inactive ingredients of Liquid Paraffin, Ethanol, Lanolin, and Purified Propolis Extract ACF®.
I have not had a need for the treating part of the kit, but I did check out the texture, smell and consistency. Very nice. Like the lip balm, very smooth and refreshing, no perfume or fruity smelling balm, just a nice smooth consistency and texture. I love the way that the lip balm feels on my lips and have worn it daily instead of my usual moisturizing lip balm.
If You Get a Cold Sore
No matter how careful you are, how proactive you may be, sooner or later, it is going to happen and you are going to get a cold sore. At the first sign, start using the Zim’s Advanced Cold Sore Kit treatment ointment and continue to use the maintain and prevent stick. Other things that you can do to help make you more comfortable are:
Apply ice or a warm washcloth to the sores to help ease pain
Wash the blister gently with germ-fighting (antiseptic) soap and water. This helps prevent spreading the virus to other body areas
Avoid hot beverages, spicy and salty foods, and citrus
Gargle with cool water or eat popsicles
Rinse with salt water
Take a pain reliever such as acetaminophen (Tylenol)
Where to Purchase Zim’s Cold Sore Kit
You can visit the Zim’s USA website to check out the wide variety of products that they have available. You can order directly from their website, or check your local RiteAid, Wal-Mart, CVS, Walgreens, Kmart, Kroger and more. You can find a complete list of retailers in the United States that carry Zim’s products.
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Statistical Infromation from U.S. National Library of Medicine – A.D.A.M. Medical Encyclopedia