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Can chickenpox be life-threatening for children?

expert
Aayushi Aggarwal
15 days ago
Body
10-12
Chickenpox in Kids

 

Chickenpox is a treatable yet deadly viral infection that is infected by the varicella-zoster virus. It is contagious and causes rashes and itching on the skin. Chickenpox is commonly tempered and is infected once in a lifetime but could be dangerous in some cases. 
Generally, Chickenpox is not a concern. But it can turn out to be dangerous for people with weak immune systems. 

However, because of the Varicella vaccine, parents should not worry as chickenpox cases in India have fallen and there is a low chance of the viral to be spread.

 

Symptoms of chickenpox in children

 

Symptoms of chickenpox in children

 

• Chickenpox causes itchy rashes with blisters that start as flat pink spots and then grow to become wet and itchy causing extreme discomfort. In the end, they get crushed and disappear. 
Some people have as many as 500 blisters. However, the blisters go away in 4-5 days.

• Irritation and Fatigue

• Fever and lowered appetite

These symptoms of chickenpox in children may also resemble other skin problems, it is always safe to check with a skin institution before forming any opinion. 
 

Vaccination

The CDC has announced two doses of the vaccine for children below 13 years of age.  

 

Vaccination for chickenpox

 

The CDC also recommends consulting with the doctor before getting vaccinated since it might be harmful to people taking medicines for immunity, have cancer, HIV, etc. 

If a vaccinated person gets infected, he/she may feel unwell for a couple of days but it will not be serious. It is always safe to go to the doctor and consult if anything happens.

 

Read | The Debate About Vaccinations - Why You Must Get Your Child Vaccinated

 

How does it spread?

The transmission occurs by direct contact with the infected person or is transmissible by air. Although, this transmission is not visible or known as it can spread from the infected person two days before the rashes or the symptoms have appeared until after the rashes have completely disappeared from the body.

 

 Spread of chickenpox

 

Children under 10 years are prone to get chickenpox but one can catch it at any age. This disease is mild in children but can be severe in adults or adolescents. 

• The virus begins in the body through the nose or the mouth. 

• The virus lasts in the air for several hours. Being in the room with an infected person or going to a place where the infected person has been can cause the infection to enter the body.

• It is a transmissible person-to-person. Touching the blisters, rashes, the wet remains of the blisters or the infected person will lead the virus to enter the body.

• New-born babies catch it before they are born from an infected mother. So, pregnant mothers should get vaccinated while she is planning for a child.

 

When is chickenpox dangerous?

• Babies who got infected before being born from their mother can be born with permanent defects like scars, problems in eyes, brain damage, or underdeveloped body.

• Chickenpox in babies under 1 month, adolescents, and adults are deadly. Essentially, anyone with a weak immune system.

 

Chickenpox in babies

 

• Sometimes, children get pneumonia along with chickenpox and their brains might get swollen.

• Pregnant women are prone to get severe chickenpox which might also affect the health of the baby. However, there is a 2% chance that an infected mother will cause chickenpox in infants.

 

When to go to the doctor?

 

Treatment of chickenpox

 

• If your child has a high fever and many blisters in the mouth.

• If the symptoms of chickenpox in children get too critical.

• If the fever goes away for a day or two and then comes back.

• If your child has a history of a weak immune system or takes many medicines from before.

• When the blisters become very red and very sore. It may lead to a bacterial infection.

• If your child is having difficulty in breathing.


Home Remedies

Many home remedies and solutions have proven to be successful in helping kids that parents must give to their kids as soon as they witness signs of chickenpox in babies and kids.

Note the foods to avoid during chickenpox to treat your kids and family.

• To keep the pox in the mouth from itching and irritated, avoid eating hard, salty and spicy foods. 

• Consume lots of fluids to avoid dehydration.

• Apply Calamine lotion to prevent the pox from itching and keep the body cool.

• Add Oatmeal, Chamomile, or Baking Soda in cool water while bathing.

• Wear cotton clothes to avoid scratching as it may cause an infection. 

• Make your child neem tea or put neem leaves in their bath as Neem fights the bacteria because of its antibacterial properties.

 

Home Remedy for Chickenpox

 

Treatment 

• Do not give Aspirin or any medications containing Aspirin to your kid. It may lead to Reye’s syndrome that can damage the liver and brain.

• Use the only doctor prescribed tablets. 

• Don’t let your child scratch. It can cause a bacterial infection.

 

Immunity

When a person has chickenpox for the first time, the virus remains in the body making it resistant to the attack of the same infection. Thus, chickenpox is hard to infect a person for the second time. However, in some cases, chickenpox can occur twice. 

If there was infected chickenpox in an infant, it is possible to come back later with some signs of chickenpox but it is mostly very mild.

Shingles is another infection that is like chickenpox and is infected by the same virus. It occurs on only one part of the body and can happen to people who have had chicken-pox after many years of having chickenpox. As the virus in the body dies down.

 

How long does chickenpox last and when do the scars vanish?

Chickenpox lasts for about 4 to 7 days and scars vanish in about 2 weeks. If the marks remain, you should prescribe it to the doctor. He will give you certain lotions that will make the scars vanish in about a year. Stop your child from scratching the scabs otherwise, they may leave an everlasting scar on the body. 

With chicken-pox, the whole strength lies in the immunity of the child. Every day, give your child healthy food, protein, and vitamin to keep their immunity strong. So that your kid deals with all of the diseases like a fighter. Just consult the doctor as soon as you discover the signs of chickenpox in your child and give proper care to your child and he will be more than fine. 

This article has been reviewed by our panel. The points, views and suggestions put forth in this article have been expressed keeping the best interests of fellow parents in mind. We hope you found the article beneficial.
TAGS
• children
• treatment
• symptoms
• disease
• chickenpox
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