How to Treat & Care for a Child with Chickenpox

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What Is Chickenpox?

Chickenpox is a highly contagious infectious disease caused by a virus called Varicella zoster, which is a member of the herpes virus family. It is characterized by a red, itchy rash that develops into blisters on the face, chest and back. Symptoms can range from mild to severe, depending on the person’s age, state of health and immune system. It is more common among children, although adults are not immune.

The best way to treat and care for a child with chickenpox is to ensure that the child is kept as comfortable as possible and to prevent further spread of the virus. Here are some tips from health professionals on how to do that:

Keep your Child Hydrated and Well-Fed

Making sure your child consumes plenty of fluids and eats nutritious meals is essential for helping them feel better and speeds up the recovery process. Offer them plenty of fluids, such as water and juice, to help keep them hydrated.

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Keep the Skin Clean and Cool

Bathe your child twice daily and make sure to avoid hot water and harsh soaps, as those can further irritate the skin. The use of lukewarm water and mild soaps can help alleviate their discomfort. Make sure that your children wear comfortable, cool clothing, such as cotton, and avoid clothing that is too tight and prone to irritation.

Provide Calamine Lotion

Calamine lotion can offer some relief to your child’s discomfort and help to reduce itching. It is best to purchase a brand specifically for children and make sure to avoid products with added fragrances, as they can irritate the skin and cause further discomfort.

Monitor for Complications

While most children who have chickenpox will recover uneventfully, there are some potential complications that can occur. Make sure to watch your child closely for signs and symptoms of secondary infections, such as swelling, redness and fever. If your child is showing signs of severe itching, is having difficulty breathing, has a reaction to a vaccine or a rash develops on their face and/or mouth, it is best to call your doctor right away for further advice.

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Preventing the Spread of Chickenpox

When it comes to preventing the spread of chickenpox, it is important to remember that the virus is extremely contagious — even before the rash develops. Here are some tips on how to prevent the spread of the virus:

Keep Infected Children Isolated

It is important to keep any child with chickenpox away from other individuals, especially those with weakened immune systems, until the rash has disappeared.

Keep the Home Clean and Sanitized

Clean and sanitize any surfaces and objects that the infected person has touched to reduce the spread of the virus. This includes towels, bedding, toys and any other items that may have come into contact with infected secretions.

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Vaccinate Your Children

Vaccinating your children against chickenpox is the best way to protect them from the virus. There are two types of chickenpox vaccines available — the live attenuated and inactivated vaccines. Speak with your doctor to determine which is best for your child.

Conclusion

Chickenpox is a contagious infection caused by the Varicella zoster virus. It is most common in young children and affects them differently depending on their age, state of health and immune system. The best way to treat and care for a child with chickenpox is to ensure that the child is kept as comfortable as possible, while preventing the spread of the virus. This includes keeping them hydrated and well-fed, keeping their skin clean and cool, applying calamine lotion as needed, and monitoring for any potential complications. Vaccinating your children against chickenpox is the best way to protect them from the virus.

Keywords: Chickenpox, Varicella zoster virus, Children, Infection, Hydrate, Calamine lotion, Vaccination.

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