What is Chickenpox?


We’ve all either had it or know someone
who has, the rash, the fever the itching so what is chickenpox? Chicken pox also known
as Varicella is a disease that is caused by the Varicella Zoster virus. Chickenpox is
an airborne disease and it is able to spread through coughs and sneezes. So an effective
method to prevent its spread is to catch it, bin it, kill it. But if you are exposed to
the infection then you will likely begin to show symptoms about 8 to 21 days later.
Some of the initial symptoms of chicken pox are, feeling unwell, having a fever, loss
of appetite and possibly a headache. It’s not until a few days after the first symptoms
does the patient begin to develop a rash, this rash is usually very itchy and tend to
develop on the head and face first which then spreads to the chest and the limbs and in
some cases people may develop rashes inside their mouths and throat too. The rash may
develop into blisters which contain pus. The blisters then crust over in about 7 days.
Generally, when chicken pox occurs in children it is considered a mild illness.
However, if a child has chickenpox they will likely still feel very bad while they are
infected. There isn’t a specific treatment for chickenpox, however there are medications
that can be used to help alleviate some of the symptoms. Some of these are paracetamol
to help relieve the fever and calamine lotion to stop itching. It is also very important
for the child to stay hydrated and things such as sugar free ice lollies are a good
way to help the child get fluids and to help soothe a sore throat. In most cases chickenpox
in children gets better on its own after about a week.
However, in some cases it can become severe and a child with Chickenpox should always
be taken to the doctor if the blisters become infected or they have any pain in their chest
and difficulty breathing this is because the most common and dangerous complication of
chickenpox is pneumonitis which is an inflammation of lung tissue, Chicken pox is worse in adults,
pregnant women, new born babies and people who have weakened immune systems as a result
of things like HIV, click here to see a previous video about HIV/AIDS. It is important to know
that if a child is suspected to have chicken pox then, Aspirin should never be given as
this can lead to a devastating condition known as Reye’s syndrome.
Once a person has had chicken pox it is unlikely they will get it again, as the body now remembers
how to fight it off. However, the virus remains in the body and lies dormant in the nerve
cells. The immune system is able to keep the virus at bay, however if the immune system
becomes weakened then the virus can reactivate again leading to shingles. Producing severely
painful blisters in a particular part of the body. It is possible to transmit chickenpox
from shingles but you cannot transfer shingles. Thank you for watching today’s video if you,
have any questions please leave them in the comments section below and don’t forget to
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