Chickenpox is one of those early childhood diseases that we can all expect to have to deal with at one time or another. Its endemic to the population—which means that while an individual outbreak will eventually subside, there will always be another on the horizon. Fortunately, though the disease is uncomfortable, most, otherwise healthy children, will weather their bout quickly and safely.
Chickenpox is caused by a virus. This means that although there is a vaccine available to those who need it, there is no real treatment for the disease itself. There are some options used to treat dangerous cases of the disease such as when it attacks a pregnant woman or an immunodeficient child, but there is no pill available at the drugstore to simply make the chickenpox go away. You and your child will have to wait for the disease to run its course. What you can do with chickenpox cases is treat the symptoms.
• With any communicative disease, and chickenpox is extremely communicable to those who have never had it before, the first step you should take is to isolate the sick child from other children. You can expect your other children to come down with chickenpox if they have not had it before, but you should take steps to keep your child from school or childcare where they might infect other children.
• Your next concern should be fever. Chickenpox can cause your child to feel itchy, uncomfortable, and feverish and so you will want to treat these feeling by keeping him or her in a cool, dry environment. This will also prevent them from irritating their sores with sweat. You can give them child safe painkillers like Tylenol in order to help bring the fever down as well. Make sure that your child stays well hydrated while they are sick.
• Finally, your child’s sores and rash will be a major barrier to their comfort and a serious health concern. You will need to keep them clean. Regular baths in warm water with vinegar will help protect your child from secondary infections and soothe itching. You should be prepared to try and prevent your child from scratching their sore and making things worse. One way to do this is to cut their nails. Another is to ask them to wear gloves.
Treat the source of their discomfort by administering oatmeal baths and calamine lotion. You could also try home remedies like bathing in pea water or covering your child’s sores with a solution made of baking powder and water.
Once the chickenpox has begun to heal, you can try placing vitamin e oil or honey on their sores. This may help them heal faster and more cleanly, reducing the potential for chickenpox scars.
The chickenpox is certainly uncomfortable and sometimes unpleasant, but with a little perseverance you and your child with make it through this health battle with far fewer problems than you might otherwise expect. Best of all, once your child has successfully conquered they disease he or she will remain immune throughout their life.