Applying hot water or heat to a herpes outbreak can temporarily relieve the pain and discomfort associated with the blisters or sores. Still, it is unlikely to help the outbreak go away any faster. Heat can worsen the outbreak by causing the virus to replicate quickly.
It’s important to note that applying heat to the affected area can also increase the risk of spreading the virus to other parts of the body or other people. This is because the virus can be present in the fluid inside the blisters, and heat can cause the fluid to leak out and spread the virus.
If you have a herpes outbreak, there are several other things you can do to manage the symptoms and promote healing. These may include:
- Taking antiviral medications prescribed by a healthcare provider to help reduce the severity and duration of the outbreak
- Keeping the affected area clean and dry
- Using over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, to help relieve pain and fever
- Applying a topical cream or ointment, such as lidocaine or aloe vera, to help soothe the affected area
- Getting plenty of rest and staying hydrated
It’s important to talk to a healthcare provider about the best treatment for your specific situation, as they can provide personalized recommendations based on the severity and frequency of your outbreaks.