The Varicella-Zoster virus causes a viral infection called shingles. Varicella-Zoster is the same virus which causes chickenpox as well. This virus does not leave the patient’s body, even after they’ve been cured of chickenpox. It stays dormant in the nerves of the patient’s spinal cord and might activate in the future, causing shingles. Thus, people who have suffered from chickenpox are likely to get shingles.
One of the most common symptoms of shingles is painful rashes. It usually appears on the patient’s face or one side of the body as a single strip of blisters or rashes.
What should one do if they see these rashes?
It is crucial to see your doctor as soon as you see any rashes or blisters on your body. It is essential that you cure the shingles rashes as soon as possible. You should visit a doctor within 72 hours of the appearance of these rashes. You’re likely to cure this condition faster if you get it treated in the initial stages. Your doctor will check the rashes or blisters and suggest medications to control the spread of the infection, to hasten the healing process, and also to ease the pain. Patients often complain that these rashes are very painful. The pain can get worse if the blisters break. So, get in touch with your doctor as soon as possible.
Best treatment options to get relief from shingles
One can choose from numerous effective cures for shingles rashes these days. Usually, your doctor will prescribe some antiviral medication for treating shingles as it is a viral infection.
You will have to take the antiviral medicine within 72 hours of the rash’s appearance. Doing this will prevent Postherpetic Neuralgia. Postherpetic Neuralgia is a condition where damaged nerve fibers keep sending pain signals to your brain. Most of the times, the pain lasts for months, and in some cases, the pain remains for years. Hence, you should not neglect shingles rashes. Taking antiviral medicine on time can reduce the chances of this condition by 50 percent or more in some cases.
- One of the cures for shingles rashes are antiviral medications, but it takes some time for this condition to get better. So, your doctor might recommend painkillers that will help in managing the severe pain that accompanies these rashes.
- Some people also use numbing agents, usually in the form of cream, spray or gel.
- People with shingles also receive corticosteroid injections.
- Not only do these medications keep the pain in control, but they also help you avoid postherpetic neuralgia, which is usually observed after the rashes and blisters go away.
If you don’t wish to depend on medicines, then you can go through some of these home remedies that might help you manage the condition:
- Patients with shingles rashes can take baths regularly. Cleaning the affected area every day will help in curing it faster. You can take a cold bath or use a cold compress as this will give you relief from the pain and itching. Remember that you should not take a hot bath or use hot water for cleaning the rashes or blisters as this might aggravate the condition.
- Stress can worsen this condition. So, you should try to avoid stress when you are suffering from shingles rashes. Always keep yourself busy with a hobby as this will take your mind off the pain.
- Antiviral medicines are one way to cure shingles rashes, but the itching can that accompanies these rashes can be quite severe. Hence, you need to make sure that you take care of this symptom too. You can make a paste of cornstarch and water and apply it to the affected area. This paste can help in reducing the itching sensation.
- Patients can also make some lifestyle or diet changes. If the patient’s immune system is weak, there are chances that this condition could worsen. Dietary changes can stop the spread of infection from one part of the body to another. So, make sure that you consume foods that can improve your immune system. By doing so, you will be able to see faster results. You should also add white meat, green leafy vegetables, eggs, dairy products, beans, whole grains, spinach, and tomatoes to your diet. Avoid foods with large amounts of sugar and saturated fats.
These home remedies are not going to cure your shingles rashes, but they will ease the itching and pain caused by the rashes and blisters. You need to take medicines as prescribed by the doctor. The medicine course might last for two weeks to six weeks, depending on the severity of the condition. So, do follow all the instructions given by the doctor to see quick results.