Home Remedies for Herpes

Herpes is an infection caused by herpes simplex virus. It commonly affects the eyes, mouth, skin, genitals, and anal area, which often cause sores near the area where the virus infected the body. These sores turn into itchy, painful blisters before healing. Herpes simplex virus is spread through direct (kissing, sexual contact, touching a sore) or indirect (sharing a drinking glass or cigarette) contact.

Home Remedies for Herpes

While there is no cure for Herpes, there are several simple home remedies for herpes that help to treat these symptoms.

1. Soothing Agents



Tea Bags


Black tea (Camellia sinensis) contains a high concentration of tannins which have both anti-inflammatory and antiviral effects. Simply make a cup of black tea and after allowing it to cool, place the warm tea bag on the affected area and leave it in place for approximately 5 minutes. Repeat 2-3 times per day.

Baking Soda


When applied to skin with a herpes infection, baking soda relieves itching and helps to dry out the sores. Simply dampen a cotton ball or piece of gauze, dip it into baking soda to coat, then apply to the affected area. To avoid contamination, do not re-dip the cotton or gauze into the box of baking soda.



Cornstarch helps to reduce chafing, absorb excess moisture, relieve itching, and dry out herpes sores. Simply apply it to the skin as you would baby powder.

Aloe Vera


Pure aloe vera gel soothes itching and helps heal the skin after a herpes outbreak. It also helps treat tenderness or redness that remain after the sore and scab have disappeared. If using a fresh plant, trim the sharp edges, cut a chunk, and rub the inner portion of the plant on the affected area. If using a packaged cream or gel, simply rub onto the affected area. It is especially soothing to chill the aloe vera before applying it to the skin.

Manuka Honey


Manuka honey from New Zealand has medicinal properties. It is antibacterial and antiviral, so applying it to the affected area can help accelerate healing. Clinical research has shown that Manuka honey increases the rate of healing of herpes simplex lesions.

Essential Oils


Some essential oils have healing and restorative properties. If the skin is red, raw, or damaged after a herpes outbreak, apply vitamin E, rose hip, jojoba, calendula, or hypericum essential oils on the affected area 1-2 times daily.

Cold Pack


A cold pack applied to the affected area helps to decrease inflammation, soothe the area, and inhibit the herpes simplex virus. The cold pack can be ice, a gel pack, or a bag of frozen vegetables. Wrap the cold pack in a cloth before applying it to the skin to avoid ice burns.

Domeboro Powder


Domeboro powder forms an astringent solution that is applied as a wet dressing or compress. It cools, soothes, and cleanses irritated and inflamed skin. To use Domeboro powder to treat herpes, mix one packet with water per the package directions, soak a cloth or piece of gauze in the solution, and apply it to the affected area.

Epsom Salts


An Epsom salt bath is one of the most effective home remedies for herpes, as it cleanses, soothes, and dries sores, as well we relieving itching and discomfort.



Over-the-counter analgesics or pain relievers such as aspirin, ibuprofen, or acetaminophen help to relieve the symptoms of painful herpes outbreak.

2. Smart Eating

Foods to Avoid


Foods to Eat


Foods with Excessive Arginine

Chocolate, Nuts, Protein Supplements Containing Arginine, Oats

Arginine-Rich Food with Lysine

Beets, Avocados, Mangos, Tomatoes, Apples, Apricots, Pears, Figs, Papaya, Sprouts, Dairy, Eggs, Fish, Chicken, Beef, Lamb, Brewer’s Yeast

Artificial Sweeteners

Saccharin, Aspartame, Sucralose, Sorbitol

Vegetables and Legumes

Green Leafy Vegetables, Carrots, Broccoli, Kale, Spinach, Cauliflower, Bell Peppers, Parsley, Eggplant, Red Cabbage, Beans, Soy, Lentils, Legumes

White Bread

Replace with whole-grain bread


Citrus (orange, lemon, grapefruit), Strawberries, Bananas, Berries, Artichokes, Red Grapes, Goji Berries

White Refined Sugars

Replace with whole-grain bread

Antioxidant-rich Foods

Turkey, Tuna, Salmon, Black Tea, Grape Juice, Whole Grains, Pumpkin Seeds, Wine, Brown Rice, Mushrooms, Barley Grass, Ginger, Garlic, Coconut, Spirulina, Dried Fruit

Alcohol, Caffeine Soda and Processed Foods

Cut these back to prevent outbreaks. Avoid fast food, margarine, and frozen meals.

Purified Alkaline Water

Alkaline water helps fight free radicals

3. Healthy Lifestyle

Besides the above home remedies for herpes, having a healthy lifestyle also helps to suppress the symptoms of herpes simplex infections.

  • Loose-Fitting Undergarments. Wearing loose undergarments prevents chafing, increases comfort, and allows for greater healing of herpes-related sores. Choose cotton fabric over nylon or other synthetic materials.
  • Regular Exercise. Moderate exercise for 20 minutes 4 times per week helps strengthen the immune system. Pollutants can negatively affect the immune system, so avoid exercising in polluted air.
  • Stress Control. Reducing everyday stress also keeps the immune system functioning at its best. Try meditation, yoga or listening to music to calm yourself down.

4. Remedies for Painful Urination

There are several remedies for painful urination associated with herpes simplex virus.

  • Urinating in the shower with cool running water helps relieve some of the discomfort.
  • By wearing latex gloves and covering the sores with one’s hands, the sting associated from urine contacting the sores can be diminished.
  • Keeping hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids dilutes the urine and decreases the pain caused by urine contacting any sores.

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