Shingles is an eruption along a nerve path often accompanied by acute spasmodic pain along the course of one or more nerves. Another name of shingles is herpes zoster and is basically a rash appeared on the skin due to viral infection. An individual having shingles may have to suffer intense pain apart from itching sensation and sometimes even numbness in a particular area of the body. Shingles initially occur in one side of the body but can gradually diffuse to the entire body if not been treated early.

Although shingles is not a dangerous skin disorder but the pain it gives to an individual could be immense even years after the treatment of the problem. Since shingles is a communicable disease, it is recommended to keep people suffering from this complication away from others, especially from those who never had chickenpox. But if the virus of shingles diffuses in others, it causes chickenpox, not herpes zoster.

Shingles Symptoms

If you start experiencing acute pain accompanied by burning sensation and flaring up of rash or blisters in a week or two, then you should go to the doctor to ensure that these signs are of shingles. You can first confirm it by yourself if such symptoms occur in one side of the body. While itching sensation and numbness in certain areas of the body are common features of shingles, some people even feel feverish along with severe headache and shivering. Another sign could be intolerable pain in abdomen.

Shingles Causes

Those who have suffered from chickenpox are more likely to have shingles because both are caused by the same virus - varicella-zoster virus. It is not necessary that shingles would occur immediately after chickenpox but instead it might come out after years. This happens because in spite of complete treatment of chickenpox, some virus remains in the nervous system and may become active again after years of hibernation.

Although shingles can occur in any healthy person, however it mostly attacks people with weaker immune system. Those suffering from dangerous diseases like AIDS and cancer usually lose resistance power to combat infections and become more prone shingles.

Shingles Treatment

This type of skin disorder normally persist a couple of weeks before healing automatically without any medication. However, the earlier you go to the doctor for treatment of shingles, the sooner you will get rid of that intense pain. There are drugs that combat viruses and your doctor will give you the specific ones for your complication. The basic function of these drugs is to truncate the life of viruses. But make sure, you start taking the course of these effective antiviral drugs within 72 hours of the appearance of shingles. Hence, once you find the symptoms of shingles in your body, just watch carefully when the rash appears in the following couple of days. The doctor can also advise to take certain pain reliving tablets as well as medicines that reduces inflammation. Some people experience pain even after treatment of shingles and they are advised to take certain anticonvulsants. You can also apply certain creams and ointments topically as they too contain pain reliving ingredients.

Shingles Prevention

There is a vaccine to prevent shingles but still the disease can occur in some individuals. However, before giving the vaccine, the doctor will ensure that an individual is not suffering from any serious disease and is having strong immune system.

Avoid scratching your skin because this may cause infection and such parts become breeding ground for bacteria. You can use certain medicines to treat allergies and hypersensitive reactions on your skin.

Take a cloth pad dampened in cold water and put it a couple of times on your blisters for soothing affect.

Always use mild soap while bathing and ensure that the areas having rashes are thoroughly clean and dried.

Don’t wear tight fitting clothes and prefer cotton fabric instead of synthetic.