Shingles, also known as herpes zoster, is a painful rash caused by a reactivation of the chickenpox virus in the body. If you have a history of chickenpox, you can develop shingles. People with shingles can develop post-herpetic neuralgia where the rash is gone, but the pain persists. The virus varicella-zoster (VZV) will mostly remain dormant in the nerves of many healthy people. The risk of the virus being reactivated and developing into shingles increases if you have a weak or compromised immune system and age. Older people are more likely to develop shingles. Research on the subject also shows that a shingles recurrence can also happen to healthy people without some of the above-mentioned risk factors. According to experts, the rate of shingle recurring is surprisingly high. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of three people in the united state gets affected by shingles.
The reactivated virus (VZV) can cause a stripe of blisters or a band of rashes, often after three to five days after other symptoms such as fever, headaches, chills, itchiness, sensitivity to light, stomach upset, severe pain, numbness, burning sensation, fatigue or redness of the skin. What specifically causes the reactivation of the virus in some people is still not yet known, and more research is still being undertaken on the subject though stress can be a factor. Ten percent of people who get chickenpox at an earlier period in their life are likely to later develop shingles. Cancer treatment example Radiation and chemotherapy medications can weaken your immune and trigger shingles.
The virus-causing Shingles can be spread through a direct exchange of fluid with a person having the virus or suffering from chickenpox. If you have shingles, stay away from people who haven’t had a chickenpox vaccine or never suffered from chickenpox. If you have blisters, try to have your rash covered to avoid skin-to-skin contact with a non-infected person since you can easily infect them with chickenpox. The varicella-zoster virus is highly contagious. A person suffering from shingles is contagious until the blister and skin rash has crusted.
You can be diagnosed with shingles based on the physical appearance of your skin rash and blisters observed by a dermatologist how the rash is distributed on the person’s skin. The rashes from shingles are usually on one side of the body. A laboratory swab of the blister fluid can also be used to diagnose shingles by checking if the varicella-zoster virus is present. Your doctor can also assess your experience of pain on one side of your body.
There is still no known viable cure for shingles. The only way to protect yourself is by prevention through vaccination. The vaccine is shown to be more effective on older adults of age sixty and above. The vaccine does not guarantee zero shingle infection. It goes a long way to reducing the duration and severity of the shingles disease and lowers your chances of having post-herpetic neuralgia. Early treatment is crucial for preventing complications and giving you a quick recovery. If you have been diagnosed with shingles, you can be given an antiviral medication such as acyclovir, Anticonvulsants such as Neurontin, cream, patch, or gel with numbing effects lidocaine patch, carbamazepine or capsaicin, and other nerve pain medications.
Antivirals and nerve pain medication effectively reduce the symptoms and shorten the duration of the condition, but they are not the only form of shingle treatment. Natural treatments and remedies are also available and just as effective and with fewer side effects that go with their use during treatment or even after. For example, if you have an allergic reaction to the antivirals and nerve pain medication. Taking a shower and bath to clean the skin rash and blister helps prevent infection to other areas. Daily baths also help in dealing with the pain and reduce itchiness caused by blisters and skin rash. Be sure to avoid hot water as it can worsen the itch of the rashes and blister.
Lotions, gel, and cream can help make you comfortable and help reduce your irritation and itching. Using a lotion or cream with capsaicin, a natural anti-inflammation substance, or calamine lotion to help dry out blisters. Lotions should also be used in the right amount and unscented to avoid further irritation. A good cream that is best for shingles has a 99% efficacy approval and no recorded or reported side effects. It will also have strong healing ingredients that immediately calm inflammation and relieve itching and the discomfort caused by blisters and rashes on your skin. One such ointment is EmuaidMax, as evidenced by the many good reviews of EmuaidMax.
Maintaining a good healthy balanced diet is also very important since this boosts your immune system and prevents the further spread of rashes on your skin. It also promotes a speedy recovery since general body health will heal and recuperate faster. Avoid foodstuff with high sugar content and saturated fat. Natural supplements can also aid you with the right vitamins to help your body heal and recover. It is advisable to get a diagnosis from a certified dermatologist since many diseases and medical conditions may be taken for shingles, such as measles. If symptoms also persist, seek professional medical advice.