Shingles Recovery Stages!
Shingles Recovery Stages
Shingles, or herpes zoster, is a painful viral infection that is caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox. After a person has had chickenpox, the virus may stay dormant in their body. Later in life, the virus can reactivate and cause shingles. Recovery from shingles can take weeks, months, or even years – some cases can cause chronic pain. Knowing the stages of shingles recovery can help manage the condition and lessen the effects.
Stages of Shingles Recovery
- Acute Phase: At this stage, shingles generally presents as a red rash, blisters, and intense pain, itching, and sometimes a burning sensation on one side of the body. This usually lasts up to one to two weeks and is considered the most painful stage.
- Sub-acute Phase: Here, the rash may still be present but starts to heal. Blisters begin to crust over and itching and pain may start to subside. This usually lasts from two to four weeks.
- Chronic Phase: At this stage, the blisters have all healed, however the person may still experience mild to severe pain for weeks, months, or even years in some cases. This is known as post-herpetic neuralgia and can be treated with medications.
Shingles can be treated with antiviral medications, pain medications, and rest. It’s important to see a doctor to get the proper diagnosis and treatment. In addition, alternative treatments such as acupuncture, acupressure, and herbal remedies can help with pain relief.
The best way to prevent shingles is to get the shingles vaccine. The vaccine is recommended for people over the age of 50 who have had chickenpox in the past. It’s also recommended for people who are immunocompromised due to a medical condition or medications.
If you’ve had shingles in the past, it’s possible to get it again but the vaccine can help to reduce your risk. The vaccine is given in two doses, the first one and then again in six to twelve months for those aged 50 and older.