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Everything You Need to Know About Shingles

RM Shingles


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Scratch here, itch there; shingles can ruin your week I know, but the good thing is that it can often go away rather quickly if you head to the doctor fast enough. Here are the basics of shingles and what you can do to start the healing process:

  • Shingles is caused by the Varicella-Zoster virus that is commonly found in chicken pox. If you’ve had the pox as a kid the virus then resides inside your body for decades living a dormant lifestyle. One day it can just choose to up and come alive and cause the shingles to begin.
  • You can get the vaccine for this if you have never had the chicken pox in your life to prevent possible outbreaks of either illness.
  • You are contagious to many groups of people from the elderly, to pregnant women, infants, children, and of course anyone going through immunity challenges of their own such as cancer.
  • Shingles does go away after a week or longer. Most have it for two weeks, and of course some have it much longer. The effects of it can last for months for some unlucky patients as they can suffer from nerve issues where the rashes or blisters had formed on their skin. There are medications your physician can administer to help this and usually it does subside after a few weeks of taking the meds.
  • Fevers are common with shingles so be certain to keep an eye out for yours. Don’t let it get well over 103F before you seek medical treatment as it can cause permanent damages. If you have a fever reaching around 103F or higher at any point during your shingles outbreak, please go the emergency room or nearest medical care unit to get that fever under control.
  • Steering clear from scratching and tearing the skin where the rashes and blisters have formed is going to be crucial to your recovery. It can cause never-ending problems for months to come just by one tiny little scratch opening, so be careful. If the itching it so bad place some ice or an ice pack into a small towel then set it over the rash sights to start calming down the skin.

Shingles can be treated from home, but it is best to seek a doctor to start helping you with your symptoms. Take the medications you have been issued and get that rest in as it is better to sleep than to be awake and trying not to scratch.

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