Cold Sores & Mouth Ulcers – How to Spot & Treat Them

mouth ailments neath

Cold sores and mouth ulcers are extremely common but easy to confuse
for one another. Let’s take a look at the common symptoms of each, and
how you can treat these common ailments in Neath with the
NHS common ailments scheme.

Cold Sores

Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus and around 1 in 5
people in the UK suffer from recurring cold sores. Feelings of tingling,
itching or burning are tell-tale signs of an impending cold sore that will
eventually present itself as a small fluid-filled blister.

Cold sores can appear anywhere on the face, but most commonly affect
the lips and area around the mouth. Importantly, cold sores are
contagious for the entire duration of an outbreak, so if you suspect you
have one you should avoid things like kissing, sharing glasses or lipstick
and having oral sex.

Mouth Ulcers

Mouth ulcers are painful sores found inside the mouth – usually on the
inside of the cheeks or lips, or on the tongue. They vary in size and are
usually white, red or grey in colour.

As they can spread and grow, it is possible to have multiple mouth ulcers
at once, but they are not contagious from person to person. Mouth ulcers
commonly make things like eating, drinking or brushing teeth feel
uncomfortable but usually clear up by themselves in a few weeks.

Cold Sore or Mouth Ulcer?

When you are looking to treat common ailments in Neath, it can be difficult to separate similar symptoms:

Cold Sore 

A small, fluid-filled blister
Appears anywhere on the face
Usually, start to heal within 10 days

Mouth Ulcer

Appears inside the mouth
White, red or grey sore
Not contagious
Usually, clear up within 3 weeks

Both of these common ailments might make things like eating, drinking
and brushing your teeth more difficult.

So now you know the difference, how do you treat these common ailments in neath?

With the NHS common ailments scheme in Wales, pharmacists can
diagnose and treat 26 common ailments (including mouth ulcers and cold
sores) free of charge at certain pharmacies. Although both mouth ulcers
and cold sores tend to clear up by themselves, you might wish to book an
appointment if you’re struggling with discomfort, are worried about
infection or if they last longer than expected.

It’s quick and easy to book an NHS appointment at The Health Dispensary
in Neath, and anyone who lives in Wales or who is registered at a Welsh
GP practice can attend. Key benefits of the scheme include shorter waiting
times for an appointment and access to (often expensive) over-the-
counter medications for free. Treatments for these conditions are often prescription-only and we are qualified prescribers. This means that you can avoid a visit to your GP and come straight for us for your common ailments. This saves not only your GP’s time but also your own.

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During your appointment, you can expect a 5-to-10-minute consultation
similar to a GP appointment, during which the pharmacist can offer free
advice and – if needed – treatment. Aside from mouth ulcers and cold
sores, other common ailments you can book an appointment for with the
scheme include acne, conjunctivitis, diarrhoea or constipation, head lice
and more. You can find out more about how we can treat common ailments in Neath here:

Find Out More

mouth ailments neath
Our appointments can be in person, via phone or video; you can even collect your treatments from our 24/7 collection points. This means that you don’t have to take time out of your busy work day.

You can find out more and sign up for 24/7 prescription collection here:
Learn More

Give us a call for more information on the NHS common
ailments scheme or book online now to start feeling like yourself again!

Get Treatment


This blog post was written on behalf of The Health Dispensary by Pharmacy Mentor.

Categories: Common Ailments (NHS), Health, Pharmacist Prescriptions