Chicken pox is the most dreaded, yet the most inevitable part of childhood.
Though it may sound surprising, it is actually better to get chicken pox during childhood. It is believed that the complications can be severe and harsher if an adult catches chicken pox. Moreover, if you have suffered from chicken pox once, there are rare chances that you will ever face it again.
How Is Chicken Pox Caused?
Chicken pox is caused as a result of an infection with the varicella zoster virus.
- This virus infects mostly children and perhaps before the age of 10.
- As a result of this infection your baby develops rash and itchy spots on the entire body.
- During this infection the body produces proteins as antibodies to fight against this virus. This works as an immunization for a lifetime.
- The virus causing chicken pox spreads faster and can easily affect a person who has never suffered from chicken pox.
[ Read: Symptoms Of Meningitis In Babies ]
You may catch the virus if:
- You are in the same room as a person who is infected by chicken pox for more that fifteen minutes; or
- If you indulge in any face to face conversation with someone who is suffering from chicken pox
The symptoms will show only after 10-14 days of getting infected by the virus, therefore it is necessary to protect vulnerable people from getting infected by this virus. These people may be:
1. A pregnant woman.
2. A person with very less immunity.
3. Children who are too small and suffering from any serious ailment.
What Are The Symptoms Of Chickenpox In Babies?
How do i know if my baby has chicken pox? Usually, the following symptoms develop as a result of getting infected by the chicken pox virus:
- It initially starts with a mild fever, sore throat and aches in the body
- After 1-2 days you might see the rash appearing on the torso which then moves to the different parts of the body.
- This rash then slowly develops into blisters and becomes irresistibly itchy. These rashes are highly infectious and full of the contagious virus.
- The rashes keep on developing till it reaches a particular peak. After that it starts receding. The amount of rashes on the body differs highly from person to person. Some may have as many as 300 spots while some develop very few spots only.
- It may be noted that the child might lose appetite and have problems in eating.
In general, these rashes very rarely cause any infection or complication and fade on its own. But if you find the following signs of chicken pox in babies along with the usual ones then it might be a serious situation and may require medical intervention at the earliest:
- Respiratory problems
- Bleeding rashes
- Unable to consume food
- Excessive weakness.
- Becoming drowsy and lethargic
How To Treat Chicken Pox In Babies?
The treatment aspect of chicken pox deals mainly with soothing the child and helping him to be at ease. The body develops anti bodies on its own to treat this illness.
Meanwhile, it is important that you remain calm. Try the following ways to help your child recover well:
1. Deal With The Fever:
Almost all children will develop mild to severe fever along with chicken pox rashes. You should try to abate the fever so that there is less agony and pain.
- You can try to reduce fever with a Paracetamol if your child is more than a year old.
- Also let there be some fresh air in the room or loosen your child’s clothing so that the heat is reduced. Some also suggest giving cold compress to ease the feverish heat.
[ Read: Symptoms Of Viral Fever In Infants ]
2. Help Them With The Itch:
The rashes that develop in chicken pox are quite itchy and children might be tempted to scratch them.
- In order to ease their itchy feeling you can apply some amount of anti-septic cream on the scabs
- You can also use calamine lotion to soothe their itchy sensations
3. Make Them Sleep:
It becomes necessary to have a good sleep during chicken pox to heal well. But in most cases it becomes difficult for babies to sleep due to rash and fever.
- If your child is unable to sleep then you can give him some soothing sedative medicine to get good sleep and rest.
- But before you give him any medicine, make sure to consult the doctor for its suitability.
4. Keep Them Clean And Hygienic:
The child will always have a tendency to touch the rash or scratch his body. In that scenario you should make sure his hands are clean and bacteria-free.
- You should also see to it that his nails are cut short.
- This will prevent him from scratching the rash. Scratching can cause bleeding or further infections.
[ Read: How To Cure Flu In Babies ]
5. Keep The Clothing Comfortable:
Your child may get agitated in wearing clothes because there is pain in his entire body.
- Let him wear loose and airy clothes
- Make sure that the fabric is smooth and not at all harsh on the skin. Choose clothes which do not make them feel too hot or too cold.
6. Keep Him Hydrated:
There are more chances of suffering from dehydration during such times. So you should be careful and give him ample fluids.
- Fluids can be water, milk or anything which is not very heavy to digest.
- But make sure that they drink enough of them. Also when your child is unable to have much fluids due to fever, try to first give him some paracetamol to reduce his fever.
- After an hour of giving him medicine you can try to feed him fluids.
These are some of the ways to take care of your child when he suffers from chicken pox. Most important is to shower him with love and affection so as to soothe him emotionally.
Did your child suffer from chicken pox and do you have better ways of caring for them? Do share your tips with us.
References : 1 , 2 , 3
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