Category Archive : Does alcohol kill cold sore virus

2 Oct, 2012 | Faejin | Comments

Does alcohol kill cold sore virus

There's a lot of nasty, virulent bugs going around this year.

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Colds and flus are putting people out of commission for weeks on end. This means that by now one of your friends has told you to drink some whiskey because that'll knock the cold right out.

Some people swear by it. But is there any scientific evidence to support that admittedly fun hypothesis? Let's see. It's Friday afternoon, you've made it through the long week, and it's time for Happy HourGizmodo's weekly booze column. A cocktail shaker full of innovation, science, and alcohol. Take two shots and call me in the morning. Err, afternoon. First let's address the theory that after you're already getting sick, drinking whiskey or brandy, or other spirits will kill the virus and you'll wake up healthy.

It's a beautiful idea, but unfortunately no study has ever shown that this is remotely true. Further, it doesn't make any logical sense at all.

People think, "Hey, alcohol is used to sterilize stuff and kill viruses outside of my body, so why wouldn't it work inside by body? Once you're already infected with a cold or flu virus, it's in your bloodstream.

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That means that if you want to kill it, you'd have to kill it in your blood. Yes, consuming alcohol does raise your blood-alcohol levels, but not nearly enough. When you consider that a blood-alcohol level of 0. You'd kill yourself before you'd kill your cold.

Theory number two. It'll kill that ish real quick! At least this one make a little bit of sense, in theory.

Lemon, honey, and alcohol: Which is best for sore throat?

Alcohol is used to disinfect surfaces. The surface of your throat is a surface! Except not really. A The spirit probably doesn't stay on your throat long enough to really sterilize it, it's washed away by saliva.

B Even if it did, it would only clear the top part of your throat. When swallowing, liquid is passed down from your pharynx, through your esophagus, and into your stomach. The thing is that most sore throats continue down your breathing pipe, not your food pipe, which is why they are so difficult to sooth.

Trying to rinse the soreness away would lead to asphyxiation before relief. So why does whiskey and hot toddies and such sometimes make your throat feel better? Mostly because it gets you a drunk. One of the byproducts of even lower levels of intoxication is that you stop feeling pain so acutely. While this sounds nice, there are risks, aside from the usual drunken ones.I want to use something that will disinfect gym equipment without being toxic to my skin.

Will this kill all bacteria, viruses etc? If not which ones are immune, and what can I use besides bleach which is highly corrosive. I enjoy going to gym, but dont want to get infected because filthy people dont know how to bathe correctly. Well people use the equipment and may have a cut and leave blood on handle I work in emergency room ao I suggest you get educated so you dont spread your sickness to decent people.

It is not effective against bacteria on the clostridium family, which can cause diarrhea and tetanus. Please do your own research too, as you are not getting correct info in some of the answers here.

Viruses are some of the least hardy organisms out there. Using to disinfect gym equipment? If not which ones are immune, and what can I use besides bleach which is Alcohol can make firm the surface of micro-organisms enough not to function like penetration into the healty cell surface of human body.

So it can eventually famine such micros into being dead. Alcohol can kill microorganism having more broad surface of cell like unspored bacteria,ameba etc. But not virus!! Virus is very tiny and lurks within host's protein or bio fluids so that not so easy to be perished with such alcohol.

They are too small and easy lurking and well depending within hosts. Heat over 75 Celcius can surely kill virus including other chemical virus killing solutions.

Written by Dr. Both virus types can cause sores around the mouth herpes labialis and on the genitals genital herpes. Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus HSV. Cold sores sometimes called fever blisters, are groups of small blisters on the lip and around the mouth.

The skin around the blisters is often red, swollen, and sore. The blisters may break open, leak a clear fluid, and then scab over after a few days. They usually heal in several days to 2 weeks. The herpes simplex virus usually enters the body through a break in the skin around or inside the mouth.

It is usually spread when a person touches a cold sore or touches infected fluid—such as from sharing eating utensils or razors, kissing an infected person, or touching that person's saliva. A parent who has a cold sore often spreads the infection to his or her child in this way.They most commonly appear on the lips, and their arrival is preceded by a tingling sensation.

A few days later, the red, painful-looking spot manifests. They are visible for about a week, and during this period the blister bursts and dries up until the scab falls off. Topical alcohol can speed up the process, so that you get rid of your cold sore much sooner.

Pour a small amount of alcohol into the lid of the bottle or a small container. Use benzyl alcohol or isopropyl rubbing alcohol, which are available at pharmacies.

does alcohol kill cold sore virus

Dab the affected area with the cotton swab. This might sting a little. The cold can also help to get rid of the cold sore 1. Repeat several times a day, until the cold sore starts to disappear, which could be in as little as 24 hours. Cold sores appear when your immune system suffers due to stress, fatigue or an illness. The best prevention is by ensuring you get enough rest and consuming vitamin supplements to help your body to fight the virus.

Alcohol swabs can be purchased prepackaged from pharmacies or on-line stores. These are handy when travelling or to take into work. Cold sores are also contagious, so avoid kissing anyone while you have one or sharing things like lip balm, towels and cups. If you use lip balm on your cold sore, throw it away after the sore clears to prevent reinfecting yourself. Avoid touching the cold sore, to prevent spreading the infection.

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Wash your hands after touching it and never touch your eyes afterwards, since there is a small but possible risk of spreading the infection, which can lead to serious problems. Dip the cotton swab into the alcohol.

does alcohol kill cold sore virus

Monitor the health of your community here. More Articles. Diseases and Injuries. Written by Linda Harris. If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.

Things Needed Cotton swabs Benzyl alcohol or isopropyl rubbing alcohol Ice cubes. References WorldwideHealth. Tips Cold sores appear when your immune system suffers due to stress, fatigue or an illness. Warnings Cold sores are also contagious, so avoid kissing anyone while you have one or sharing things like lip balm, towels and cups. Photo Credits cotton buds image by Alison Bowden from Fotolia.If you buy something through a link on this page, we may earn a small commission.

How this works. Cold sores are often known as fever blisters given their appearance.

does alcohol kill cold sore virus

The virus does not always cause symptoms. The Academy of General Dentistry state that only around 30 percent of those with HSV-1 will show signs of the infection, namely cold sores. While a majority of HSV-1 cases involve oral herpes or cold sores, around 40 percent of cases involve genital sores.

Cold sores usually appear on the upper body, mainly around the lips and mouth, but they can emerge anywhere on the skin, including the tongue. In infants, cold sores are often mistaken for canker sores. Cold sores caused by HSV-1 often last little over a week and then clear up on their own. However there are ways to decrease the length, intensity, and frequency of outbreaks.

Drugs are available, but many remedies use common grocery store ingredients and household staples. Compounds that are antiviral, antimicrobial, and immune-boosting are often good for treating cold sores. Some remedies help limit the spread of the virus. Others reduce the chance of further infections or decrease pain and discomfort.

Not every treatment works for every individual, but a wide range of natural products may help reduce symptoms and prevent future flare-ups.

Using Rubbing Alcohol on Cold Sore Outbreaks

Vitamin E helps the body repair damaged skin cells and grow new ones. Vitamin E-rich food choices include nuts, whole wheats, and leafy greens. Vitamin E oils are also available.

Vitamin C-rich foods are often red, orange, or deep green in color. These include most berries, tomatoes, peppers, kiwis, broccoli, and spinach. There are also over the counter OTC medications available to treat cold sores symptoms.

Many offer child-friendly dosages. People with cold sores should seek medical care if the sores do not improve within a few weeks, if symptoms are severe, or if sores continue to weep. Complications from HSV-1 are rare but possible. People with weakened immune systems should seek medical advice, as should those with frequent outbreaks. Complications can arise when the virus spreads to others parts of the body. For example, the virus can spread to the fingertips, as with herpes whitlow, or eyes as with herpes keratitis.Special Offers.

If you grapple with recurring cold sores, the prickly, itchy sensation that marks the beginning of an outbreak can be distressing. Cold sores aren't just a nuisance.

Will Rubbing Alcohol Kill Cold Sores?

They can be painful and impact your confidence. While cold sores typically heal on their own within two to four weeks, you might want to find a solution that accelerates the process. You might have considered applying rubbing alcohol on cold sore outbreaks as a quick home remedy, but does it really work? Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus type 1.

The red, painful sores can appear on the inside or outside of your lip or anywhere around your mouth. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine50 to 80 percent of adults in the U.

Some carriers may never have an outbreak, while others may have recurring cold sores. Factors like stress, hormone changes and infection can trigger cold sore outbreaks, according to the Mayo Clinic. If it's not too severe, a cold sore will generally go away without treatment within a matter of weeks. Antiviral creams or pills recommended by your doctor may help the healing process. Before trying any home remedies, like using rubbing alcohol on your cold sore, discuss your options with your doctor.

Rubbing alcohol is a common household item that's primarily made up of either isopropyl alcohol or ethyl alcohol. There are no universal instructions for administering rubbing alcohol on cold sore outbreaks, but people might treat the area with a dab of rubbing alcohol on a clean cotton ball.

This method may speed up healing because alcohol is a drying agent found in some over-the-counter cold sore preparations, reports the Mayo Clinicbut no definitive studies have proven the effectiveness of this remedy. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDCisopropyl and ethyl alcohols can inactivate the herpes virus, which may lead some to the conclusion that they can clear up cold sores.

However, no scientific data affirms a direct link between rubbing alcohol and healing a cold sore. The CDC reports that isopropyl alcohol is highly flammable, so always make sure to follow the instructions on the bottle for handling and storing it. If swallowed, rubbing alcohol can cause abdominal pain and vomiting.

If your cold sore outbreak is inside your mouth, do not apply rubbing alcohol on it in case you accidentally ingest the alcohol. Rubbing alcohol can also cause a mild skin reaction called contact dermatitis, states the Mayo Clinic. This condition can cause a slight burning sensation and inflamed, red skin. To avoid these risks, it's best to steer clear of rubbing alcohol on your cold sores.

Sticking to safe, proven cold sore treatments allows you to speed up the healing process risk-free. Applying a cold compress to the sore may help shorten your outbreak and decrease inflammation, redness and crusting. If you suffer from regular cold sore outbreaks, you may want to try an over-the-counter antiviral ointment, advises NHS Scotland.

Note that while these treatments may provide relief, they do not get rid of the herpes simplex virus or prevent future outbreaks. Rubbing alcohol on a cold sore might not be a proven path to healing, but cold sores are common and can be treated with other methods.Isopropyl alcohol is the main ingredient in rubbing alcohol, a product available at most supermarkets and pharmacies 1.

It is noted for its disinfectant properties, but has also been used in solvents and other chemical applications. Isopropyl alcohol as found in rubbing alcohol which is composed of either 70 percent or 91 percent isopropyl can be a useful chemical to keep in your home to help destroy organisms such as bacteria, viruses and household pests 1.

However, isopropyl can also be dangerous to other forms of life, so it is important to keep it out of reach of young children. Isopropyl alcohol kills bacteria by damaging the cell walls of one-celled organisms 1. With these cell walls ruptured, bacteria perish quickly, as they can no longer function normally. Bacteria is also the cause of certain types of fungal infections, such as nail fungus. Soaking feet in a mixture of water and rubbing alcohol can help treat nail fungus in its early stages.

After a few weeks of daily soaking, the fungus should be gone. In addition to damaging the integrity of cellular walls, rubbing alcohol also denatures proteins, meaning it can also be used to kill viruses on contact. Both viruses and bacteria are less stable when outside of the body or other biological host, meaning that germs on surfaces are far easier to kill than if they were in the body. Rubbing isopropyl alcohol on the skin or spraying it on hard surfaces can kill both bacteria and viruses on those surfaces 1.

Fleas, ticks and lice can be killed by submerging them in alcohol, in essence suffocating these parasites. An initial spray of isopropyl alcohol can stun pests, making it easier to kill them 1. Materials that have come into contact with parasites for example, flea and tick combs, pet collars, etc. While not the preferred method for eradicating household pests, rubbing alcohol can help with the process of exterminating these tiny parasites.

It is important to note that dogs and cats could ingest trace amounts of isopropyl alcohol left on furniture or other surfaces in your home 1. Ingesting isopropyl can cause blindness, so homeowners with pets should use isopropyl sparingly, if at all. Human beings can also be killed by isopropyl alcohol, although this is rare 1.

In addition to producing strong, flammable fumes that can damage the lungs in large quantities, this form of alcohol can also prove life-threatening when ingested. Some people ingest this type of alcohol to get drunk; however, this can lead to isopropyl alcohol poisoning 1. This may include symptoms such as blindness, shock and depression of the central nervous system. However, when used correctly, a human faces little risk of health effects resulting from exposure to this chemical.

Isopropyl alcohol is the main ingredient in rubbing alcohol, a product available at most supermarkets and pharmacies.Rubbing alcohol has the potential to heal cold sore quicker. This is because the alcohol will dry out the fluid-filled blister. It can promote faster healing, but there are dangers.

It will clearly sting, but the main risk is that the drying effects of alcohol will cause the site to crack open. If the scab falls off prematurely, this could prolong the recovery time. Applying rubbing alcohol to cold sores works best when used in conjunction with a quality skin moisturizer.

Alcohol can be mixed with witch hazel or essential oils for cold soresfor example. You will find out more about this remedy and any safety concerns you might have, so read on to find out more. It minimizes blister development and inhibits viral spreading when treated during the prodromal stage when you experience an initial tingling sensation on the lips.

While there are pitfalls when alcohol becomes your treatment of choice, shielding the area from infection should be your primary concern. One way you can protect the area from harm is to apply moisturizer to the blister or problem area. Because alcohol will dry out the area in a rather harsh fashion, returning moisture to the skin is critical if cracking is to be avoided.

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By using cold sore chapstick or pure petroleum jellyyou can seal the blister area from cracks and avoid a bacterial infection. As noted, drying out a blister is not ideal and goes against most treatment objectives. Applying rubbing alcohol on a cold sore is safe provided the proper measures are followed. Because a cold sore scab is very sensitive, a certain level of skill is required.

As it relates to the application process, a cotton ball or cotton swab is ideal.

does alcohol kill cold sore virus

Regarding alcohol volume, just a dab of liquid on the cotton will suffice. The last thing you want is an abundance of alcohol dripping from the cotton, your lips, etc. Regarding safety concerns, so much depends on the delicate nature of the application. Because a cold sore scab serves as a mini coverage plate, attention to detail is critical.