Shingles and chickenpox are caused by the same virus, the varicella-zoster virus. It’s also called herpes zoster virus. This is a very common viral illness among adults over age 40. When you develop shingles or chickenpox, your body has been infected with the varicella-zoster virus and your immune system has been weakened. There is an overabundance (more than usual) of the chickenpox virus in your body. So what are the symptoms of shingles and chickenpox?
The most obvious symptoms of shingles and chickenpox are the rash and blisters. You may have only one or several rashes, or you may have many rashes and only have a single blister. You will probably also experience flu-like symptoms such as fever, aches and pains, sore throat, headaches, vomiting, diarrhea, tremors and muscle pain.
However, many older people also have the appearance of shingles and chickenpox. The rash tends to be larger than for younger people, and it can have a scaly surface and appear as a red bump or blisters. The blisters tend to stay open for some time before they heal. These older people are more susceptible to developing the chickenpox virus as well. So the question is, are shingles and chickenpox painful?
The answer is, they can be. There are three major types of rashes that can appear, each having their own characteristics and causes. These include the common rash caused by the chickenpox, blisters that occur on one side of your body and cause itching, and chickenpox blisters that can be found in either one side of your body and cause both itching and rashes. The last type, known as varicose eczema, can also be painful, spreading to the buttocks and thighs and causing tender, burning skin.
The most common type of shingles rash is the chickenpox rash. This is usually brownish in color and does not cover your entire body. It is typically located on one side of your face, back and neck. The virus itself does not reside in this area, but only affects your immune system and triggers an allergic response. The rash usually resolves in a few days to a week with a lot of rest.
Another type is the varicella-zoster virus (VZV) rash, which is caused by an infection with the herpes simplex virus. If you develop shingles in one side of your body, the rash is likely caused by VZV. However, if it appears on more than one side, it is likely that you are developing shingles as the result of another condition. For example, you could have non-traditional genital herpes and develop a rash on the genital area.
If you think you are developing shingles, it is important to visit a doctor so that he or she can confirm your diagnosis. In severe cases, shingles can cause complications, including permanent damage to nerves and life-threatening infections. The rash is usually more uncomfortable than painful, but it can be extremely uncomfortable if you have a fever because of the fluid secreted by the affected area. Be sure to use ice compresses when the rash develops to relieve the inflammation and pain.
One of the best things you can do to treat your shingles rash is to protect yourself from future infections. Keep in mind that if you already have a chickenpox episode, you will be more susceptible to getting this condition again. If you are looking for answers to the question,” Are shingles painful? “, remember that there is no pain involved. It’s important to prevent future problems.
Fortunately, today there are some great treatments that can help you manage your rash if you are experiencing extreme pain. Zovirax is an over the counter antiviral medication that comes in cream and a gel. Both types of medication work quickly to reduce the pain. Zovirax can also be used on its own as well. The downside of this medication, however, is that it might not work as well if your rash is caused by chickenpox.
Another treatment to treat your are shingles pain is heat therapy. This method requires a few visits to a clinic where you apply warm water to the affected areas three to four times a day. The idea is to increase blood flow to the area. You’ll likely want to do this for at least ten days in a row, but don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t seem to work right away. The condition may just take time to clear up.
So are shingles painful? It depends on how severe the case is, but generally speaking, the pain is mild to moderate. If you have the time and patience, though, pain medications are a great way to reduce the redness and itchiness associated with shingles.