Millions of people had chickenpox as a child. It was a common childhood illness until the vaccine was available in 1995. Chickenpox is caused by the varicella-zoster virus, and the virus remains in your body for the rest of your life. As you age, the virus can become active again and cause shingles. If that happens, you can be in for a painful journey. Thankfully, there are treatments available for the painful symptoms of shingles.
What are the Risk Factors for Shingles?
Everyone who has had chickenpox is at some risk for shingles. The chickenpox gets better, but the virus remains in your body. When you get older, it can be triggered, leading to the shingles outbreak. In addition to the previous exposure to the varicella-zoster virus, other risk factors increase the chance of getting shingles. Because shingles are more common in older people, it suggests both age and a lower or compromised immune system are risk factors or precursors.
The virus is contagious to people who have never had chickenpox or the vaccine against the varicella-zoster virus. However, they will catch chickenpox, not shingles. Chickenpox can be serious for adults and should automatically be the reason for a doctor’s visit. Most people under 45 have been vaccinated against chickenpox as children. The shingles vaccine is NOT a booster to that protection. It is a different vaccine and must be given even if you have been vaccinated against chickenpox.
How Can Shingles be Treated in Atlanta?
The most problematic, painful symptom of shingles is a prominent, often very painful rash on one side of the body. The rash can be deeply painful as it develops blisters, then crusts over. This unbearable pain can last for weeks. Thankfully, here in Atlanta and the surrounding area, treatment to lessen the pain and shorten the length of time is available. Treatment can also diminish the chance of developing long-term nerve damage from the virus.
At Medical Dermatology Specialists in Atlanta, Dr. Weisman, a board-certified, nationally recognized dermatologist, can provide you relief. So, don’t delay if you develop a shingles rash. Instead, contact Medical Dermatology Specialists immediately for an appointment with Dr. Weisman. Relief from shingles is just a click away.
Posted on behalf of Dr. Jamie Weisman, Medical Dermatology Specialists, Inc.
Medical Dermatology Specialists, Inc.
5730 Glenridge Dr, Suite T-100
Atlanta, GA 30328
Monday – Thursday 7:30 AM – 5:00 PM