Cold sores -- or fever blisters -- are an embarrassing part of life for many of us. Misconceptions abound about them, though. Can you separate the facts and fictions?
If you have a cold sore, it'll probably heal itself within two weeks.
Cold sores come from the herpes simplex virus, which usually enters the body through a break in the skin around or inside the mouth.
Herpes simplex comes in two versions: HSV-1 (which generally infects the mouth) and HSV-2 (which targets the genitals).
You can get herpes by physically touching an infected person's sores or through saliva -- so don't share utensils with someone who has herpes.
Unfortunately, there is no cure for the herpes simplex virus. You might never have any symptoms, but the virus will always be in your body.
It's actually a sign of healing when a cold sore blister breaks. A clear liquid will leak out, and the blister will crust over and should heal itself within a couple of weeks.
Some people who have the herpes simplex virus find that stress can cause cold sores to pop up. Sun exposure can also do it.
Yes, it's true -- most of us have herpes.
Experts say around 20 to 40 percent of infected people get cold sores, so 30 percent is about right.
Doctors generally order herpes tests only for genital sores.