According to the Mayo Clinic, cold sores are caused by certain strains of the herpes virus, including herpes simplex virus type 1 and herpes simplex virus type 2, though type is the most common cause of cold sores. While cold sores on the nose can be uncomfortable and somewhat embarrassing for those that get them, there are some home remedies that can help to treat the problem quickly and efficiently. However, these remedies have not been backed by the Food and Drug Administration, so consult your doctor before trying them.
Water-Based Zinc Solution
According to Julie Gabriel, author of “The Green Beauty Guide: Your Essential Resource to Organic and Natural Skin Care, Hair Care, Makeup, and Fragrances,” a water-based zinc solution can help to reduce cold sores on both the nose and mouth. According to Gabriel, a water-based zinc solution can be found at most drug stores, and it should contain a maximum of 2 percent zinc-oxide. To use the water-based zinc solution on your nose, simply dab a small amount of the mixture onto the cold sore and leave it on until the solution dries, or leave it on overnight. Wash the skin with a gentle cleanser after it has dried or in the morning and simply leave the cold sore alone. This treatment can be repeated daily as needed unless the zinc-oxide irritates your skin.
Petroleum jelly is a common folk remedy to help reduce the visibility of cold sores while helping to get rid of them as fast as possible. To use petroleum jelly on a cold sore, simply dab a small amount, about the size of a dime, on the skin and gently massage it in for a minute. Leave the petroleum jelly on your nose for one hour, avoiding other parts of your skin. Gently cleanse your skin with regular soap after one hour and pat the skin dry. This treatment can be used two times per day as long as it does not irritate your skin. Note that you should look for the highest concentration of petroleum jelly in any product you purchase, as those with lower amounts may not be as effective for getting rid of a cold sore.
According to Paul A. Offit, Bonnie Fass-Offit, and Louis M. Bell, authors of “Breaking the Antibiotic Habit: A Parent's Guide to Coughs, Colds, Ear Infections, and Sore Throats," the amino acid lysine can be used to treat cold sores both in the mouth and on the nose. To use lysine as a cold sore treatment, the authors recommend that you take approximately 2,000 to 3,000mg of lysine per day until the cold sore goes away, and the amount should be doubled if you feel an additional cold sore forming while treating the first one. This treatment can be used for up to two weeks as long as you do not notice any side effects. Note that lysine-rich foods can also be helpful if you do not want to take a supplement, and a few of these include brewer’s yeast, potatoes, dairy products and red meat.
- "The Green Beauty Guide: Your Essential Resource to Organic and Natural Skin Care, Hair Care, Makeup, and Fragrances"; Julie Gabriel; 2008
- "Breaking the Antibiotic Habit: A Parent's Guide to Coughs, Colds, Ear Infections, and Sore Throats"; Paul A. Offit, Bonnie Fass-Offit, and Louis M. Bell; 1999
- Mayo Clnic: Cold Sores: Causes