Have you ever suffered from itchy, red rashes? Do you know that although Chickenpox spreads easily, it is not life-threatening?
Chickenpox spreads from skin to skin, showing symptoms of small rashes, which are itchy. The illness occurs when a person comes in contact with the chickenpox virus, varicella-zoster. Because it is a viral infection, it is easily communicable and transmits by mere contact with the fluid. Though, it is only contracted by those who haven’t been infected before. Previously, it was a global public health threat but with early vaccination over the years, there are few cases of chickenpox in the world.
What To Know About Chickenpox
People with chickenpox usually have red rash, which becomes scabs on their skins. Children are commonly infected and those who did not receive childhood vaccination. Its symptoms begin to appear ten to twenty one days after contact with an infected person. Symptoms may include fatigue, red, itchy dots, headache, blisters, etc. To prevent the spread of chickenpox, children receive its vaccine at an early age.
Adults who were not vaccinated as children often contract this illness from infected people. It is often painful for adults having chickenpox, thus they have to take relieving medications and the vaccine afterwards. Presently, there is no death case caused by chickenpox.
Symptoms Of Chickenpox
Chickenpox has clear and visible signs which anyone can easily detect by mere looking. Symptoms include tiredness, blisters, red dots on the skin, eyes, and sometimes throats, itchiness, etc. In rare cases where dots are spotted on the tongue or eyes, going to see a healthcare worker is recommended.
Transmission Of Chickenpox
Transmission of the virus occurs when a child comes in contact with the fluids from an infected child. It also spreads through sneezes, coughs and skin contact. When a person comes in contact with the virus, it stays active for days, even after a day of infection. Because its symptoms don’t appear early, children often contract chickenpox from their playmates unknowingly.
Process Of Infection
After contact with the virus via any of the means aforementioned, rash may begin to appear as small, red dots all over the body. This could become papules, which will break out in a few days. After that, small blisters will form in a day and then break out on the skin too. Finally, the skin is covered with scabs and heals after a few days. After repetitive weeks of spots and blisters, it eventually stops.
Shingles is a chickenpox that affects adults. It is also a viral infection by the same virus. It is mainly spread to people who haven’t been affected before. It is characterized by rash and bumps, which eventually heals after some days. Like chickenpox, there is an available vaccine for it.
Treatment Of Chickenpox
Though there is no cure for chickenpox, it is not fatal and eventually heals after some weeks. Treating it requires drugs to relieve the pain and fever. Doctors also prescribe ointments to reduce the itching on the skin to avoid scarring.
Lotions like Calamine lotion are most commonly used for treating children with chickenpox. However, vaccination helps to prevent it. Two doses of Varivax or ProQuad are given depending on the age of the receiver. Children younger than 13 receive their doses, weeks apart. While persons older than 13, receive the two doses several days in between.
Preventive Measures Against Transmission
Preventing transmission is advisable, especially among children. One measure is not being around close proximity to infected persons until they are healed. Also, isolate infected persons and avoid sharing intimate objects with them for the time being. Do not share clothes or personal items with infected persons. It is best to seek medical care from the nearest healthcare worker at first detection of itchy rashes on the skin.
Chickenpox is a viral infection that majorly affect children and those who have not had it before. It is spread through direct contact and is highly communicable. It is characterized by the presence of rashes that itch and turn to blisters, which may lead to skin scarring after healing. Vaccines are used to prevent the transmission while medications are used for treating the illness.