To those who are unaware of what shingles even is (which is normal, because many people go about living all of their lives without contracting or even hearing of it), it is an illness which is connected to chicken pox and is caused by a virus strain called varicella zoster. Once a person is exposed to this strain, he will first experience chicken pox, but only if that person has never had that illness before.
Once the chicken pox has made its rounds through his system, the person will return to being healthy, but varicella zoster will stay inside the body. It is only when the virus strengthens again when it finally turns into a case of shingles, which shows in the form of plenty of tiny blisters in one part of the body—an extremely painful rash which can and probably will remain for quite some time.
Normally, even though the process can be very painful, the problem often resolves itself without too many complications. However, there are rare cases where shingles has caused permanent eye damage, and even facial paralysis if left unchecked. It is also very, very contagious and it can prove to be dangerous to pregnant women and others who are susceptible to chicken pox. Fortunately, this article provides some tips which you can follow to prevent the spread of shingles through the use of a step-by-step process. So if you wish to be better prepared to tackle this rare yet contagious illness, continue reading and find out what you can do:
- What to do if you have the shingles. There is nothing you can do to protect yourself from the shingles if you already have it, but there are still some ways with which you can help prevent the spread of your own shingles to the people around you. Aside from taking the medication prescribed to you by your doctor, you need to avoid physical contact with people—especially with the ones who are most susceptible to shingles, such as pregnant women and the elderly. Also, make sure to always wash your hands so that the germs do not spread to the things you touch. Lastly, put a bandage on the affected area of your body—this is so that no-one can accidentally touch the contagious rash (including yourself).
- What to do if you do not have the shingles. If you have never had the chicken pox before and wish to protect yourself from the shingles, then a vaccine to protect yourself from chicken pox will do nicely. If you have already had chicken pox however, you still need to be careful, as when you contract the virus it may just go straight to shingles. You can prevent yourself from contracting it by always washing your hands, avoiding contact with people whom you think have the shingles, and just being clean and careful in general. After all, you never know when a simple handshake could lead to a bad case of shingles, so never let your guard down.
And that is all you really need to know. With a little effort (and the steps of this article), you should be able to easily avoid getting shingles (or prevent it from spreading if you do).