Thursday, 25 October 2012

Tips on caring for children with chickenpox

We have The Pox.  Of the chicken variety.  Poor little Dexter is slowly getting covered in spots, although is still able to carry a smile (my brave little boy!).

Chickenpox is one of those illnesses that I suppose it's inevitable children will get at some point.  I was just hoping that they wouldn't catch it so soon.  At the moment, Dexter doesn't seem to letting his spots trouble him, which is good news.  But, I'm on alert and gearing myself up for Sophia becoming ill.  She's fine at the moment but I'm sure that will change at some point fairly soon.  Because she's older, I'm certain it will be more of a battle to stop her scratching her skin.

What is chickenpox?

Chickenpox is an illness that causes a rash red, itchy spots to appear on the skin.  Some children might only get a few spots while for others, the rash can cover their whole body.  The spots will eventually turn into blisters (nice!) before scabbing over.
For some children, these spots might be precursed by flu-like symptoms such as a temperature, a feeling of general unwell-ness, headache or other aching limbs.  Some might experience diarrhoea and/or vomiting.

Treatment for chickenpox

As soon as I saw the spots slowly spreading across Dexter's legs and hands, I took him to the GP who diagnosed chickenpox.  He gave us some antihistamines as well as some calamine lotion to help ease the itching and sent us on our way.

Apart from that, I'm trying to ensure the house is kept as bug free as possible.  Chickenpox is caused by a virus which spreads quickly and easily through coughs and sneezes so we've been exercising extra vigilant levels of hygiene.  Dexter isn't sneezing or coughing, but I'm sure the virus will spread through other means, such as saliva.

Tips on caring for children with chickenpox

It's all very well having the right medication to try and tackle chickenpox, but it's another thing trying to keep them happy and comfortable during this frankly miserable time.  I wanted to know what else I could do for Dexter but wasn't sure if there was anything else I could try.  So, I turned to one place that I knew wouldn't let me down - Twitter.  And I was right.  A bunch of very lovely ladies shared with me their advice, which I'm now sharing with you.

Heidi at @Him_Me_Three said to "keep them cool and use lots of calamine cream.  Also, try to keep them occupied to keep their minds off itchy spots!".

@JordanFleet suggested trying Poxclin, a mousse to help with the symptoms of chickenpox. My pharmacist had also recommended ViraSoothe to help relieve any itchiness.

Both @CupcakeMumma11 and @climbingmummy said that putting baking soda in the bath can help ease any itching and speeds up the process of the spots crusting over.

@tootingem recommended antihistamines and a sudocream/calamine cream mixture that she bought from the pharmacy when her boys had the illness.

There was a good tip from Charlotte at @themummyblogger - two drops each of tea tree oil and lavender in baths.  Apparently, the lavender soothes while the tea tree helps stop infection in the spots and helps the healing process.

@audreyseptember recommended "pain relief, calamine and distraction".

I'd also like to add one more tip to the list - lots of cuddles!

Has your family been struck by chickenpox?  Have you got any tips on how to deal with it?

Please note: I am not endorsing any products in any way here, merely relaying suggestions that I have received from others.  Before trying any medicines (whether they are mentioned above or not), you should always speak to your doctor first and get their professional advice.


  1. Really helpful post, thanks for researching and sharing x

  2. Glad you've found it useful. I find twitter can be great for getting advice from people on how they deal with things


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