Monday, May 27, 2024

How Can I Get Rid Of Shingles

What Can I Do For The Pain

How to treat shingles

To help with the pain of shingles, your doctor might have you take an over-the-counter pain medicine. This could include acetaminophen or ibuprofen .

Applying a medicated anti-itch lotion to the blisters might reduce the pain and itching. Placing cool compresses soaked in water mixed with white vinegar on the blisters and sores might also help.

If shingles causes severe pain, your doctor might prescribe a stronger pain medicine.

What Causes Internal Shingles

The varicella zoster virus causes shingles. Its the same virus that causes chickenpox. After a bout of chickenpox, the virus becomes dormant in the body and settles in certain nerves and tissue of the nervous system. Later in life, the virus can reactivate and present itself as shingles. Shingles typically appears on the skin along the nerve path where it had been previously dormant. If the reactivation of the virus becomes severe, it can affect not only the skin but other organs too. This is what is called systemic or internal shingles.

What Is The Best Medication For Shingles

Your healthcare provider will determine the best medication for your case of shingles based on your symptoms, medical history, and response to shingles treatment. Heres an overview of the popular shingles medications that your doctor may prescribe.

Best medication for shingles
One 0.65 ml injection in the upper arm Irritation of the injection site or chickenpox-like rash near the injection site or headache

Dosage is determined by your healthcare provider based on your medical condition, response to treatment, age, and weight.

Other possible side effects exist. This is not a complete list.

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Treating Shingles On The Face

Treatment is the same no matter where shingles develop. Treatment will involve taking an antiviral drug to reduce the severity of the outbreak and help it disappear more quickly.

People will see the best results if they take antiviral medication within 72 hours of the rash appearing.

In most cases, a doctor will prescribe the drugs famciclovir and valacyclovir. People with weak immune systems may need to take a different drug, such as acyclovir, instead.

Most research suggests anti-shingles drugs are safe for people who are breast-feeding, but those who are pregnant or breast-feeding should discuss medications with their doctors.

People who develop PHN may also require pain medication. PHN medication may include oral drugs, such as opioids or creams that people can apply directly to the skin.

The typical shingles red rash or blisters occur after pain, itching, and tingling. They are usually limited to one side of the face and body.

Shinglesrash and blisters appear on one side of the face extending to the scalp and ear.

If the rash involves the ear, it can lead to hearing loss, imbalance, and weakness of the facial muscles. Shingles rash on the scalp causes pain while combing or brushing and bald patches. Shingles can occur in the mouth and are usually very painful, causing pain while eating and change in taste.

  • Shingles of the eye and forehead
  • Shingles on the waist and back
  • Shingles on the buttocks

How Can You Care For Yourself At Home

Shingles Treatment Cream
  • Be safe with medicines. Take your medicines exactly as prescribed. Call your doctor if you think you are having a problem with your medicine. Antiviral medicine helps you get better faster.
  • Try not to scratch or pick at the blisters.
  • Keep the blisters moist until they heal over. One way to do this is to cover them with a thin layer of petroleum jelly, such as Vaseline, and a nonstick bandage.
  • Take an over-the-counter pain medicine, such as acetaminophen , ibuprofen , or naproxen . Read and follow all instructions on the label.
  • Avoid close contact with people until the blisters have healed. It is very important for you to avoid contact with anyone who has never had chickenpox or the chickenpox vaccine. Young babies and anyone who is pregnant or has a hard time fighting infection are especially at risk.

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When Should You Call For Help

or seek immediate medical care if:

  • You have a new or higher fever.
  • You have a severe headache and a stiff neck.
  • You lose the ability to think clearly.
  • The rash spreads to your forehead, nose, eyes, or eyelids.
  • You have eye pain, or your vision gets worse.
  • You have new pain in your face, or you can’t move the muscles in your face.
  • Blisters spread to new parts of your body.
  • You have symptoms of infection, such as increased pain, swelling, warmth, or redness.

Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if:

  • The rash has not healed after 2 to 4 weeks.
  • You still have pain after the rash has healed.

Can I Get Shingles More Than Once

You may have heard that if youve already had chickenpox once, you cant get it again. It might make sense, then, to assume that the same goes for shingles. After all, its the same virus, right?

However, its a misconception. First of all, you can develop chickenpox a second time if youve already had it once. Its quite rare, but it is indeed possible.

Secondly, shingles arent the same as chickenpox. Even though the same virus is responsible for both conditions, they are entirely different. Getting shingles a second time isnt as rare as getting chickenpox twice. When your bout of shingles goes away, the virus goes back into hibernation. This means that it has the potential to become active again later in your life.

In the first few years after your first bout of shingles, the chances of getting it again are slim. In fact, the chance of developing shingles again is lower than it is for someone who has never had it. As the years go on, the odds go up again. Eventually, you have about the same chance of developing shingles as everyone else.

Luckily though, it is extremely rare to develop shingles a third time.

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How To Get Rid Of Shingles Fast And Naturally

Shingles, also called herpes zoster, is a viral infection caused by the varicella-zoster virus. This disease is very common. According to the Center for Disease Control, millions of people in the United States are reported to have it every year. And 30% of people will suffer from shingles in their lifetime. The vast majority of them are older people over the age of 60.

This virus is hard to remove, which can remain in your nervous tissue for a long time, even after successfully treating chickenpox. Usually, shingles occur when the virus becomes triggered again. In addition, the varicella-zoster virus can also result in chickenpox and cold sores.

How Is Shingles Diagnosed

Shingles: Signs, Symptoms and Treatment with Dr. Mark Shalauta | San Diego Health

Your healthcare provider will do a complete physical exam and ask about your medical history, specifically about whether you have ever had chickenpox.

Your healthcare provider will likely know right away that it is shingles based on the unique rash. The rash usually appears one area on one side of the body or face. It appears as red spots, small fluid- or pus-filled vesicles, or scabs.

The healthcare provider may also take skin scrapings for testing.

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Who Is More Likely To Suffer From Herpes Zoster

Some people are more at risk of getting the virus, such as the following:

  • People who have had chickenpox before, as the varicella-zoster virus can cause both diseases.
  • Poor immune system people like older people and children.
  • People who have other health conditions such as diabetes, HIV, skin cancer, etc.
  • In addition, stress or taking certain medications such as steroids can also weaken the immune system and worse this condition.

Preventing The Virus Spreading

If you have the shingles rash, do not share towels or flannels, go swimming, or play contact sports. This will help prevent the virus being passed on to someone who has not had chickenpox.

You should also avoid work or school if your rash is weeping and cannot be covered.

Chickenpox can be particularly dangerous for certain groups of people. If you have shingles, avoid:

  • women who are pregnant and have not had chickenpox before as they could catch it from you, which may harm their unborn baby
  • people who have a weak immune system, such as someone with HIV or AIDS
  • babies less than one month old, unless it is your own baby, in which case your baby should have antibodies to protect them from the virus

Once your blisters have dried and scabbed over, you are no longer contagious and will not need to avoid anyone.

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Am I At Risk For Shingles

Everyone who has had chickenpox is at risk for developing shingles. Researchers do not fully understand what makes the virus become active and cause shingles. But some things make it more likely:

  • Older age. The risk of developing shingles increases as you age. About half of all shingles cases are in adults age 60 or older. The chance of getting shingles becomes much greater by age 70.
  • Trouble fighting infections. Your immune system is the part of your body that responds to infections. Age can affect your immune system. So can HIV, cancer, cancer treatments, too much sun, and organ transplant drugs. Even stress or a cold can weaken your immune system for a short time. These all can put you at risk for shingles.

Most people only have shingles one time. However, it is possible to have it more than once.

How Is Postherpetic Neuralgia Treated

6 Foods To Avoid With Shingles: Measures To Prevent

Treatments include lotions or creams and/or other medications not specifically used for pain, such as antidepressants or drugs for epilepsy. Regular pain relievers are not usually effective for this type of pain.

If your pain doesnt lessen, you might try therapies like nerve blocks or steroid injections near the area where the nerves exit the spine. Your provider might suggest an implantable nerve stimulator device for severe, ongoing pain that hasnt responded to other treatments.

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Urgent Advice: Get Advice From 111 As Soon As You Suspect Shingles

You might need medicine to help speed up your recovery and avoid longer-lasting problems.

This works best if taken within 3 days of your symptoms starting.

111 will tell you what to do. They can arrange a phone call from a nurse or doctor if you need one.

Go to 111.nhs.uk or .

Get an urgent GP appointment

A GP may be able to treat you.

Ask your GP surgery for an urgent appointment.

What You Can Do About Nerve Pain That Lingers After Shingles

Chronic pain that continues after a case of shingles is called postherpetic neuralgia . It is estimated that about 20% of patients will experience this type of nerve pain as a complication of shingles.

Those who have had chickenpox are at risk of developing shingles later in life. People who develop PHN are generally age 60 and older. Although there is no cure for PHN, there are several methods of pain management that can ease symptoms. Fortunately, the type of pain that arises from postherpetic neuralgia improves over time.

Neuralgia affects the nerves, causing structural and functional damage. It can feel like a stabbing or burning pain that radiates along the affected nerve.

Neuropathic pain is not caused by an external injury or stimuli but originates from inside the nervous system. When the herpes-varicella zoster virus is reactivated in the form of shingles, scar tissue forms alongside nerves, creating pressure, and sending pain signals to the brain.

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What Does It Mean To Let Shingles Run Its Course

This refers to the typical course a shingles rash takes, even with antiviral treatment:

  • A person may develop a tingling sensation or pain in a certain area on the skin, most commonly on the waistline. This may last for several days.
  • Next, a rash develops in the area. The skin turns red, with fluid-filled bumps . Its during this time that a shingles rash can spread the VZV to another person who hasnt had chickenpox or the chickenpox vaccine.
  • After 1 to 2 weeks, these fluid-filled bumps start to crust over. At this point, the rash can no longer spread to other people. It can then take 1 to 2 more weeks for the crusted areas to fully scab over and heal.
  • Check If You Have Shingles

    New treatment for the pain of shingles

    The first signs of shingles can be:

    • a tingling or painful feeling in an area of skin
    • a headache or feeling generally unwell

    A rash will appear a few days later.

    Usually you get the shingles rash on your chest and tummy, but it can appear anywhere on your body including on your face, eyes and genitals.

    The rash appears as blotches on your skin, on 1 side of your body only. A rash on both the left and right of your body is unlikely to be shingles.

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    Shingles On Scalp With Swollen Lymph Nodes

    Swollen lymph nodes is a common symptom in people with shingles on scalp. Lymph nodes also called lymph glands are an important part of the immune system. These nodes are located throughout the body, they are however only visible and palpable when enlarged or swollen.

    Lymph node will often swell in one location due to an infection, an injury or a growth of a tumor. Shingle on scalp is a viral infection. As said, lymph nodes are part of the immune system which helps fight infection in the body. These nodes work by carrying lymph fluid, nutrients and waste material between the body tissues and the bloodstream.

    The location the nodes are swollen can help identify the problem.

    • A swelling on side of neck, under the jaw or behind ear will in most cases swell when you have a cold or a sore throat. The virus causing shingles can also be a cause for the swelling.
    • A swelling of the nodes in armpit is often caused by an injury or an infection in the arm or hand
    • Lymph nodes above the collarbone, on the other hand, may be as a result of an infection or growth of a tumor in the areas around the lung, breasts, neck or the abdomen.

    Shingles on scalp can lead to complication if improper treatment is not taken. According to the national health services united kingdom, complications of shingles are more likely if you have a weakened immune system, or older than 50-60 years of age.

    Apart from the swelling of the lymph nodes, other complications of shingles will include the following:

    Can I Give Shingles To Others

    No one can catch shingles from you. But the virus can be spread to a person who has never had chickenpox. The virus lives in the blisters that shingles causes. It can be spread until the blisters are completely healed. If you have blisters that have not crusted over yet, you should stay away from:

    • Anyone who has never had chickenpox
    • Babies under 12 months old
    • Very sick people

    Tell your doctor if you live with children who have not had chickenpox. They may need to be vaccinated.

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    Can Shingles Be Prevented

    There are 2 vaccines available to reduce the likelihood of developing shingles, Zostavax and Shingrix. If you are over 50, you can talk to your doctor about whether you need it. It is recommended for everyone over 60 and is given free of charge in Australia to people aged 70 to 79.

    Vaccination will not guarantee that you will not get shingles, but it will reduce your chance of developing the condition. The vaccine used to protect against shingles is not the same as the vaccine used to protect against chickenpox. Read more about the chickenpox vaccine here.

    What Do Shingles Scabs Look Like

    Nerve Pain Relief Great Organic Shingles Treatment Recovery Cream ...

    Shingles scabs develop when your blisters dry up. The blisters that form on the rash usually start to scab within 7 to 10 days. These scabs are usually dry and flat and can be red, brown, or yellowish in color.

    Since shingles blisters affect just one side of the body, the scabs will only appear on one side as well. This is different from most other skin conditions, which typically affect both sides of the body.

    Other common skin disorders might cause peeling or white patches . Shingles scabs usually dont have these characteristics.

    The following images show what shingles scabs look like:

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    How Long Does Shingles Last

    Most cases of shingles last three to five weeks.

    • The first sign is often burning or tingling pain sometimes it includes numbness or itching on one side of the body.
    • Somewhere between one and five days after the tingling or burning feeling on the skin, a red rash will appear.
    • A few days later, the rash will turn into fluid-filled blisters.
    • About one week to 10 days after that, the blisters dry up and crust over.
    • A couple of weeks later, the scabs clear up.

    When Should I Seek Emergency Care For A Shingles Rash

    While most cases of shingles are mild, several potential complications may require emergent care:

    • Facial rash. A shingles rash on the face is concerning because eye involvement can lead to blindness. This requires an urgent assessment from an ophthalmologist.
    • Loss of hearing or facial movement. Rarely, shingles can lead to hearing loss or facial nerve paralysis.
    • Disseminated herpes zoster. This widespread shingles rash can also affect your organs. It requires hospitalization with intravenous antiviral treatment.
    • Fever. Shingles in addition to fever can be concerning. It may mean you have a superimposed bacterial infection, which could require antibiotics and close observation.
    • Confusion or seizures. Shingles in addition to confusion or seizures could indicate brain inflammation, which requires hospitalization for IV antiviral treatment and close monitoring.

    Dr. Megan Soliman is an ABMS board certified internal medicine physician whose main focus in her clinical practice is patient advocacy. Her research interests include adverse effects of medications and herbal supplements. Soliman is enthusiastic about bread and butter medicine, which includes treating patients with the most common diseases. She also has a passion for reaching underserved communities, including both U.S. and international rural communities.

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