Go With Gabapentin For Phn
If you do have the lasting nerve pain of PHN, some doctors will prescribe anti-seizure medications, including Neurontin or Lyrica . Even though they were developed as anti-seizure medicines, they can help modulate the nerve pain until the nerves can heal, Dr. Auwaerter explains. These treatments can reduce pain signaling from the nerves to the brain by calming your neurotransmitters for a short time. They are FDA-approved as an effective treatment for PHN. Like antivirals, they require frequent daily dosing, usually three times per day.
Opt For Otc Pain Relievers
Over-the-counter options like Tylenol can ease the discomfort of shingles rash and even mild PHN. At least for early pain, we often use non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , like ibuprofen or naxopren, Dr. Auwaerter notes. Theyre easy to pick up at any drugstore, but theyre not always ideal for frequent and/or long-term use. NSAIDs can cause stomach irritation and stomach ulcers, and can harm the kidneys unless taken with large volumes of water. If you experience abdominal pain or constipation, ask your doctor to help you find another option.
Apply Capsaicin Ointment For Pain Relief
Capsaicin, a component found in red pepper, can ease the pain caused by shingles. This compound depletes a neurotransmitter called substance P. which helps transmit pain signals to your brain.
Ointments with capsaicin are available in the market. You can also mix a pinch of powdered red pepper with plain skin ointment to make one at home. However, do keep in mind that its not a good idea to use capsaicin ointments on broken skin. Also, application of the ointment can cause burning and itching the first few times. Do a patch test before using to ensure your skin doesnt react adversely to it.1112
Read Also: What Should I Not Eat With Shingles
Take An Oatmeal Bath To Relieve Itching
Oats are widely known for their anti-itching property. You can add ground oats to bath water and settle in for a soak to relieve your itchy rash. Finely ground oats turns into a gooey mass when mixed with water. This coats your skin, soothing your skin and relieving itching. This calming property of oats is attributed to its gluten content.10
Shingles Natural Treatment Options
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention , roughly 1 million cases of shingles occur each year in the United States and about 33% of the population will develop shingles in their lifetime. This viral outbreak results in debilitating flu-like symptoms and a painful skin rash .
Many people arent aware that shingles is actually caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox the varicella-zoster virus . Hence, shingles is most likely to occur in those who have had chickenpox .
While no conventional treatment can completely eliminate the risk of developing shingles, many clinics/physicians use a shingles vaccine and/or antiviral drugs to combat the condition. Sadly, these treatments may be more harmful than they are beneficial.
Thankfully, there are natural approaches to treating shingles and the VSV virus responsible for it. Read on as this article details what causes shingles, its symptoms, and natural shingles treatment options.
Also Check: What Insurance Covers Shingles Vaccine
Antidepressants May Offer Surprising Relief
Antidepressants may have been invented for depression, but they are also known to modulate peripheral nerves, Dr. Auwaerter says, thereby dulling PHN pain. Your physician may suggest Pamelor or Aventyl or Elavil . Dr. Auwaerter adds that these medications can sometimes cause side effects like fatigue and sluggishnessthough PHN patients usually only need a low dose, which is unlikely to cause major adverse effects.
How To Prevent Shingles
- Get yourself and your kids vaccinated for chickenpox if you have never had the disease. The vaccine may not necessarily prevent everyone from getting chickenpox, but it has been reported to be successful in 9 out of 10 individuals who took it.
- Adults in the age group of 50-60 years should take a vaccination for shingles.
As shingles is contagious, it is important that you take precautions to prevent spreading of the infection to other individuals. Heres what you need to do:
- Keep your rash/blisters covered until they dry completely.
- Avoid contact with individuals who have never had chickenpox or have weak immunity.
- Avoid sharing of utensils.
- Wash your hands frequently.
Shingles or herpes zoster is a viral infection caused by the Varicella zoster virus. It causes fluid-filled blisters, red patches, and rashes. Getting a vaccine may help reduce the development of infections. However, you may also check out some natural treatments for shingles. Oatmeal baths, cold or hot compress, vitamins, coconut oil, garlic, and tea tree oil are effective remedies to manage the symptoms of this infection. In addition, washing your hands frequently, keeping the blisters covered until they dry, and avoiding contact with infected individuals may help prevent shingles. Follow these remedies and tips, and if you still experience the symptoms associated with this viral infection, immediately contact your doctor.
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How Is Shingles Diagnosed And Treated
If you think you might have shingles, talk to your doctor as soon as possible. Its important to see your doctor no later than three days after the rash starts. The doctor will confirm whether you have shingles and can make a treatment plan. Most cases can be diagnosed from a visual examination. If you have a condition that weakens the immune system, your doctor may order a shingles test. Although there is no cure for shingles, early treatment with antiviral medications can help the blisters clear up faster and limit severe pain. Shingles can often be treated at home.
Shingles And Your Eyes
If the shingles rash breaks out on the face, near the eye, the vision may be affected. An ophthalmologist should be consulted right away when pain or other symptoms of shingles affect the eye or the area near the eye.
Shingles painand other symptoms from an outbreak of herpes zosterusually lasts between three to five weeks. Most people experience shingles once, but in some instances, people will continue to experience pain. When this happens, its called postherpetic neuralgia .
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Does The Varicella Vaccine Have Anything To Do With Why There So Many More Cases Of Shingles Nowadays
So in case you’re wondering, Kasey’s chicken pox that I told you about not long ago was about a year after I had shingles. And too bad, because if he had gotten it beforehand, I may not have gotten shingles at all
Chickenpox Is Nature’s Way of Protecting You from Shingles:
Nature has devised an elegant plan for protecting you from the shingles virus.
After contracting and recovering from chickenpox , as you age, your natural immunity gets asymptomatically boosted by coming into contact with infected children, who are recovering from chickenpox. This natural boosting of natural immunity to the varicella virus helps protect you from getting shingles later in life.
This is true whether you are a child, adolescent, young adult, or elderlyevery time you come into contact with someone infected with chickenpox, you get a natural booster shot that protects you from a painfuland expensivebout with shingles.
In other words, shingles can be prevented by ordinary contact, such as receiving a hug from a grandchild who is getting or recovering from the chickenpox. But with the advent of the chickenpox vaccine, there is less chickenpox around to provide that natural immune boost for children AND adults.
So as chickenpox rates have declined, shingles rates have begun to rise, and there is mounting evidence that an epidemic of shingles is developing in America from the mass, mandatory use of the chickenpox vaccine by all children.
Treatment Of Pain After Shingles
Treatment for people with PHN may include:
- Nerve blocks: Local anesthetic or alcohol injected directly into the nerve affected
- Thoracic epidural injections: Local injection in the space around the spinal cord
- Antidepressant medications: Such as amitriptyline
- Membrane stabilizers: Such as gabapentin
- Capsaicinapplication: Topical cream applied to the affected area
Recommended Reading: Can Nerve Damage From Shingles Be Repaired
Natural Remedies For Shingles
If you had chickenpox as a child, the shingles virus lies dormant in your body. The virus can reactivate later in life and cause a shingles rash. The rash can occur on any part of your body but typically only affects small sections.
Pain is usually the first symptom of shingles. The rash and fluid-filled blisters form within a couple of days after the onset of pain. Some people with shingles also have a fever, sensitivity to light, and fatigue.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , about 1 in 3 people in the United States will develop shingles at some point in their lifetime.
The shingles virus can last between two and six weeks. Shingles isnt life-threatening, but some people experience postherpetic neuralgia. This is when nerve fibers become damaged, causing shingles pain that lasts for weeks or months after the rash clears.
Theres no cure for shingles, but your doctor can prescribe antiviral medication to help shorten the duration of the virus and reduce symptoms.
Although an antiviral is an effective treatment for shingles, its not the only option. Several natural remedies may also reduce pain and discomfort.
Dry your body completely and then wash your towel to avoid spreading the virus to others.
- orange and yellow fruits
Natural Cures For Shingles Pain
The outbreak of shingles is very common all over the world. This skin infection is caused by virus varicella zoster. This virus is dormant in every persons skin as each one of us has suffered from chicken pox during childhood, the time when the virus is first born. Shingles manifests itself on the skin surface in the form of rashes which cause extreme pain. Instead of using drugs to treat the skin ailment, use natural cures for shingles pain.
Also Check: How To Treat Shingles In The Eye
Shingles Natural Treatment: Foods Supplements & Oils
Shingles natural treatment is a really worthwhile topic, especially when you consider that every year, one million Americans experience a shingles outbreak. In the U.S. alone, one in three people are said to be affected by shingles at some point in his or her lifetime. Shingles are known for causing nerve pain, itching, fever and fluid-filled blisters. A weakened immune system can make shingles more likely to occur and can also make symptoms of shingles worse.
Shingles is caused by the same virus as chickenpox. In fact, shingles occur in approximately 10 percent of people who previously had chickenpox. There is also an age factor with shingles risk. Unfortunately, the older you get the higher your risk of shingles. Roughly half of all shingle cases occur in people who are 50 or older.
Thankfully, there is shingles natural treatment, including foods you should eat to boost your immune system as well as foods you should avoid. Plus there are essential oils for shingles and a variety of options when it comes to natural supplements. Overall, anything you can do to boost your immune system can go a long way both to prevent and naturally treat an unpleasant case of shingles.
Steroids Can Sometimes Help
Dr. Auwaerter notes that some older research done in the early 2000s supports the use of the steroid prednisone taken with an antiviral for short-term shingles pain relief, as well as a decreased risk of developing the more serious PHN. Steroids may be especially beneficial for people over 50, who are at higher risk for PHN. However, they can increase your risk of immunosuppression over time, so theyre generally used for shingles for just one to two weeks. If youre trying this approach, work closely with your doctor to manage the appropriate dosing.
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Home Remedies For Shingles Nerve Pain
Post-herpetic neuralgia is a form of nerve pain caused by a virus known as herpes zoster. This condition is also known as shingles. Post-herpetic neuralgia is caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox.
After chickenpox, this virus remains dormant in nerve cells for decades before becoming active again, causing shingles. Activation of this virus leads to rash and pain along its pathway due to damage of nerve endings by herpes zoster virus.
Normal treatment can be used to stop this pain, but if it persists for over one year without reducing then that will be a different condition known as post-herpetic neuralgia . Patients describe the pain caused by Post-herpetic neuralgia as excruciating, electric and burning.
PHN mostly affects the elderly and it disrupts their normal schedule and comfort due to the pain it causes. This pain can sometimes be unbearable, which is why its recommended that anyone suffering from PHN should see a doctor immediately.
Get treated for shingles nerve pain to avoid the pain becoming permanent. Post-herpetic neuralgia is known to cause a lot of suffering and disruption of normal life.
The good news about post-herpetic pain or nerve pain is that there are drugs that can help reduce the pain and prevent a person from being attacked by the virus that causes this pain.
Today, there are different antiviral drugs that can be used to treat post-herpetic neuralgia . These medicines are Famvir, Zovirax and Valtrex.
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These Home Remedies Should Provide Relief During A Case Of Shingles
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Anyone who had chickenpox as a kid remembers the red, painfully itchy blister-like rash, and perhaps the fever and fatigue that came along with it. But even though it’s true you’re now inoculated against chickenpox for life, there’s one pox-related complication you may not have considered: Shingles.
Shingles is a reactivation of the chickenpox virus , and causes a painful, itchy rash in one place on the body. Shingles is most common in adults over 50 years of age in fact, about half of people over age 80 may experience it.
Here’s how to minimize discomfort and pain with stuff you probably already have at home:
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Natural Remedies To Relieve Shingles Pain Outbreaks
Shingles pain can be excruciating. Thankfully, most people who experience a shingles outbreak only do so one time. However, others have recurrences. There is no cure for shingles, but there are antiviral medications that can speed the healing process. Shingles vaccination also is available to adults aged 50 and older to help prevent initial outbreaks among those at the highest risk for them.
Modern medicine is not the only solution for treating shingles pain and preventing future outbreaks. Naturopaths and doctors agree that natural treatments for shingles can help with both discomfort and relapses. If youre among the people who prefer natural alternatives for treating common conditions, this article provides information on the most effective natural treatments for shingles.
What Causes Shingles?
Shingles is a viral infection caused by the varicella zoster virus . It is the same virus that causes chickenpox. Individuals who recover from chickenpox can have the virus lay dormant in their systems for years. Doctors dont know why, but roughly 1 out of every 3 people who had chickenpox later have the virus reactivate as shingles.
How Common is Shingles?
For 1 out of 10 people, nerve pain postherpetic neuralgia can last for months or even years after the initial outbreak. It is one of the most common shingles complications. Age increases the risk of developing postherpetic neuralgia.
Can You Get Shingles More Than Once?
Doctor Recommendations for Shingles
Apply A Baking Soda Solution To Relieve Irritated Skin
Another common remedy for itching thats easily available at home is baking soda. Add a little baking soda to a glass of water and apply the solution to relieve irritated skin. You can also try adding some baking soda to your bath water.15 Although its not clear how exactly baking soda works, its alkaline nature is supposed to be at work here.
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Why Not Take The Shingles Medicines From Your Doctor
My favorite homeopath, Joette Calabrese, is convinced that shingles and MOST other health issues are milder and do not recur when you dont use the conventional meds. Those are what makes it more intense or what causes it to last for a year for some people!
You have shingles> your doc gives you an antiviral medicine.
You have asthma> he puts you on an inhaler.
You have eczema> you go on steroids.
You have anxiety> he puts you on the meds and now you’re STUCK.
Now you’ll get everything worse and it’ll last longer!
Often, homeopathy can work in spite of allopathic drugs, but not so well when it comes to shingles. It is my experience that if drugs are begun, homeopathys ability to clear the case is hampered.
I’m convinced I had such a mild case because I didn’t take any shingles medications.