Shingles are caused by the varicella-zoster virus and is called herpes zoster. Shingles is a painful viral infection of the skin that causes irritation and discomfort. The virus infects a nerve area giving rise to painful rashes that stay for around 2 to 6 weeks.
Shingles is not life threatening, but it can have nasty complications. It can cause paralysis, loss of hearing, eyesight, and brain dysfunction if left untreated. The early symptoms should be noted, and guidance of a physician is needed. A proper diagnosis will ensure speedy recovery and prevent complications.
Your doctor will not have any difficulty recognizing shingle rashes. It is visible with the naked eye. Sometimes, an accurate microscopic observation might be necessary if the rashes are recurring. It is also applicable if the patient has a weak immune system.
A wide range of shingles medication is readily available these days. There is no special cure for shingles. The infections once visible will subside on its own after a period. However, antiviral drugs and other related medication can relieve you from the discomfort.
The treatment process and antiviral drugs diminish the viral activity and reduce the pain. There are several different medications available in the market, it is, therefore, better to let your doctor decide the best medication for you. Every individual has a unique body structure, and they respond differently to the treatment. Patients affected with shingles do not require hospitalization. Taking proper advice from your doctor and resting at home will keep you at ease. However, patients with low immunity might have to be hospitalized.
- Shingles medication includes mainly anti-viral medicines and vaccines. Steroids and anticonvulsants are other popular shingles medications.
- One of the most common shingles medications is antiviral drugs. Likewise, analgesics are another option for treating shingles. They come in the form of gels and creams that help in reducing the pain.
- Anticonvulsant drugs too have shown positive results as shingles medications. Patients are given corticosteroids if the pain doesn’t subside in the long term. These are another example of shingles medication.
- Tricyclic antidepressants have also been helpful in treating shingles. They control the anxious nerves and act as a pain reduction medicine. Their calming effect makes them the best option for treating shingles.
- Antihistamine drugs is another option for shingles medications. They are helpful in reducing the itchiness caused by the rashes.
Sometimes nerve block injections are used to subdue the pain. This has been highly successful in reducing the pain for patients suffering from shingles.
- Some painkillers too have shown positive results as an effective medication for shingles. You can buy these painkillers over the counter. However, it is best to ask for your doctor’s advice. Your doctor will suggest the best painkiller suited for your system. He/she will prescribe you medications that will have reduced side effects on your system.
- The shingles medications are usually prescribed for 7 to 10 days. The amount of dosage depends on the severity of the rashes, the effectiveness of the medicines, and the doctor’s advice. If the rashes persist even after the completion of the dosage, your doctor might give you a stronger medicine.
- The shingles medication mainly controls the symptoms of the virus. The shingles medication is not meant to kill the varicella-zoster but to prevent its multiplication. It has seen to reduce the severity of the infection considerably. Apart from this, it shows remarkable achievement in reducing the healing time as well. This further minimizes chances of complications.
Shingles medications are not administered to pregnant women and children. However, your doctor may advise you medications depending on the severity of the infection. Children and pregnant women are best treated with home remedies to avoid side effects.
- While antiviral medicines are a popular choice as shingles medication, you can also treat shingles with simple home remedies. They have zero side effects and are effective in relieving pain.
- Clean the blisters daily with cold water. This will reduce the itchiness and soothe your skin. A refreshing shower is a simple remedy for easing the discomfort.
- Calamine lotion is another effective shingle medication. It helps reduce the inflammation and gives a cooling sensation.
- A paste made with baking soda and water is a popular cure for shingles. You can use cornstarch too. Apply this paste to the rashes and wash off after it dries. This will stimulate the healing process
- Make sure you eat healthy food. Include healthy proteins and vitamin enriched fruits and vegetables. A weak immune system worsens your condition and makes healing difficult.