Well, either I bit my lip or something in the night (possible), or I have a real honest-to-Pete cold sore coming on. ::stifles panic:: Now, I know that cold sores are normal — they're expressions of Herpes Simplex 1, which something like 80% of the population carries and is one of the viruses associated with the common cold — but I've only ever had one mild one in my life, and even then it scared the pants off me. Not sure why, but those things give me the creeeeeeps.
I do have a cure for them, which I used last time and worked fantastically well (gods I love herbalism)…but do I have any slippery elm bark on me? Um, no, I do not. So I read about six web-pages full of possible cures, most of which sounded horrendous, and settled on "likely to work and available": A dose of ibuprofen (swelling), a packet of Emergen-C (immune system boost) and a slice of fresh garlic, which I rubbed on the proto-sore and then ate, to clear my mouth of nasty virus-stuff. (Garlic, for you uninitiated, is a phenomenal anti-viral, -fungal and -bacterial. Be careful putting it on your skin though — prolonged exposure will give you chemical burns! Garlic is such a strong medicine that if you rub some on your foot, you'll taste it shortly thereafter — I've used it to remove warts and skin-tags, all by itself! — so treat it with respect.)
It would make some sense for me to get a cold-sore now…I've been traveling, been around new people and sharing food and stuff with them, and due to being with family for the holidays, not eating or sleeping terribly well either (always a bad idea in the middle of winter!). Sometimes I lean on my awesome immune system too much; a performance vehicle needs careful care! I wouldn't be surprised if, due to the stress of the last few weeks, I got a sniffly cold-cold for the first time in almost 2 years (though I would be angry at myself, lol), and I shouldn't be surprised if I get this. But hoooooooly cow do I hope I can stave it off! ::shudders::
Hope everybody out there is healthy!! More useful posting soon; after a long period of just being slammed with daily life (moving right before the holidays was such a great idea) I'm finally thinking and writing more again. *WHEW*
Peace (even while at war with viruses! ;)
*thank you to the University of Maryland Medical Center for their clear summaries of herbal remedies! Nice to have that to link to.
UPDATE: Everybody who looked at it (including Nurse Mom) said it was a cold sore, and if they're right then I stumbled on an awesome way to kick a cold sore's butt! All I did besides the aforementioned single dose of vitamins and ibuprofen was to continue to apply and eat fresh garlic. Whenever it became sore or bothered me, I'd cut the end off a clove of garlic (nice and portable; I took it on the train) and rub it right on there. When I felt it sting I took the garlic off, and the stinging went away after a minute — and after that, it would stop bothering me. It stayed the way it was for a day, then faded in a day; today it's pretty much gone and I haven't needed the garlic at all. Also on the first day I ate a clove of garlic, and the next day I chewed up a few of the end-pieces I was cutting off. But that seems to have done it — woo!