Herpes Home > Abreva Dosage

A person's Abreva dosage is not dependent on factors such as age, weight, or other medical conditions. What is important is that you apply the drug at the first sign of an outbreak, five times a day, for up to 10 days. Follow the directions that come in the package. However, if you have any questions about your Abreva dosage, be sure to contact your healthcare provider.

Abreva Dosage: An Introduction

There is only one standard dose of Abreva® (docosanol), regardless of your weight, age, or other medical conditions. As is always the case, do not adjust your Abreva dose unless your healthcare provider specifically instructs you to do so.

Abreva Dosage for Cold Sores

Abreva works best if it is started early at the first signs of a cold sore. It should be applied five times per day. You do not need to get up during the night to apply Abreva (it can be applied five times during the day). Apply enough to cover the cold sore, and rub the medication in gently and completely. You can use Abreva for up to 10 days for each outbreak. If your cold sore has not healed after 10 days, you should contact your healthcare provider.

General Information on Dosing With Abreva

Considerations for people taking Abreva include the following:
  • The medication is to be used directly on the cold sore; it is not to be taken internally or to be used inside the mouth or nose.
  • Abreva works best if you start using it at the first signs of a cold sore (tingling, redness, or a bump). You should apply it five times a day.
  • Wash your hands before and after each application. Apply the cream using a fingertip.
  • You can apply cosmetics on top of Abreva. However, you should use a disposable applicator (such as a cotton swab) to avoid spreading the virus to the cosmetic.
  • For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as directed by the package instructions.
  • If you are unsure about anything related to your Abreva dosage, talk to your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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