Chickenpox, as we all know, is a viral infection that causes itchy skin and flu-like symptoms. The treatment of this condition is mostly based on managing the symptoms. Although the symptoms of chickenpox take their own course of time to fade off, there are certain at-home remedies and home care treatment options that can relieve the itching and pain. So in addition to taking antiviral medicines as recommended by your doctor which can help to make the symptoms less severe, there are few chickenpox remedies you can do at home.
Chickenpox Remedies: Tips To Follow
1. Do not scratch the itch
One of the key symptoms of chickenpox is itchy skin and hence, it is advised to avoid scratching. This is because it not only increases the risk of scars but also can lead to infection. As a safety measure, you can trim the fingernails of your kids, which can prevent skin infection caused due to scratching. Tap or pat on the itchy skin but do not scratch.
2. Use cold compress
Chickenpox also causes fever, which in turn can make you more prone to skin itching and scratching. Increased body temperature can make things worse for a person with chickenpox. This is the reason why it is advised to use a cold compress as it not only helps in lowering the body temperature but also soothes itchy skin. Apply a cool, damp compress over the itchy area as it acts as one of the effective chickenpox remedies. Use a natural fabric like cotton and avoid using ice cubes directly on the skin.
3. Eat healthy, home-cooked food
It is quite common to crave for spicy and processed food when you are ill. However, it is best to avoid indulging in spicy, oily or salty foods as these not only hinder your digestion process but can also increase heat in the body. Moreover, these foods can cause sores in the mouth, which in turn can delay the healing process. Hence, it is best to opt for home-cooked foods, preferably bland foods, to improve the healing process. Also, up your intake of fruits which are rich in Vitamin C and boost immunity such as oranges, apple, grapes, lemons, etc.
4. Stay hydrated
Drink lots of fluids as it helps you to stay hydrated and prevent dehydration caused due to high fever. Moreover, it can also help to flush the viral toxins from the body and aids in quick recovery. However, avoid drinking sugary beverages and opt for fresh, plain water, especially if you or your kid has sores in the mouth. For kids, you can opt sugar-free popsicles to replenish fluid stores in the body.
5. Wear gloves
This tip mostly applies to kids because they are the ones who are more prone to scratch an itchy skin. This is the reason why it is advised, especially for kids, to put gloves or socks over their hands to prevent scratching. This can not only prevent the direct content of nail with the chickenpox blister but also lower the risk of infections and limit scarring. Also, wear loose, cotton clothes, which will help the skin to breathe and ease the itching.
6. Avoid self-medication
Most people tend to pop a pill for fever or a painkiller for body ache without a second thought when suffering from chickenpox. However, this is not a good idea. Aspirin, which is commonly used to relieve fever, can cause a deadly condition known as Reye’s syndrome in children below 16 years of age. Also, the use of anti-inflammatory painkillers can make the condition worse. Hence, do not self-medication but consult your doctor before taking any pills. Take only prescription medications and as advised by your doctor for a quick recovery from chickenpox.
Chickenpox Remedies: Home Remedies That Can Help
Taking medications as prescribed by your doctor and following tips such as staying hydrated and using cold compress can help you to get on the track of the healing process. In addition to this, there are few at-home chickenpox remedies that are known to help relieve the symptoms and help to get rid of scars caused due to scratching. Do consult your doctor before you try any of these chickenpox remedies.
1. Oatmeal bath
Oatmeal bath is one of the most popular natural remedies to relieve itchy skin caused due to chickenpox. For this, you need to cook two cups of oatmeal in two liters of water for around 15 minutes. Now, let it cool and tie the cooked oatmeal in a cotton cloth and allow it to float in a tub of warm water till the water becomes turbid. Splash this water all over the body to soothe itching.
2. Baking soda
This is also quite commonly used to get rid of itching in people with chickenpox. Add 1/4th teaspoon of baking soda in a glass of water. Dip a soft, cotton cloth in it and dab it on the skin such that the baking soda dries on the skin. This can keep you away from scratching the blisters.
3. Vitamin E oil
Rich in antioxidants, Vitamin E oil can act as one of the effective chickenpox remedies as it help to relieve itching as well as prevent scars caused due to scratching of chickenpox blisters. Gently apply Vitamin E oil all over the skin as it exerts a calming and soothing effect on the skin and thus, promotes healing. Moreover, regular application of this oil was found to lighten the scars/marks caused due to chickenpox.
(The article is reviewed by Dr. Lalit Kanodia, General Physician)
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