Shingles Treatment, Prevention, and Symptoms
The best shingles treatment for you depends a great deal on how healthy you are in the first place. The more your immunity is compromised, the greater your risks become. Most people develop shingles later on in life. The older you are, the worse the condition can be to deal with.
Shingles (medically named Varicella Zoster Virus) are an outbreak of blisters or a rash-like condition on the skin. It usually forms in a straight line and is found on one side of the body or the other. It is caused by the same herpes virus that causes chickenpox.
Symptoms of Shingles
Symptoms of onset are often tingling, then extreme
burning/shooting pain or itching that occurs in one specific location - only on one side of the body. After several days or a week, fluid-filled blisters appear. The blisters or sores can be very painful and resemble poison ivy. Shingles pain can be minimum or extremely intense.
For people who feel like a thousand knives are sticking in their skin, even the slightest touch is hard to bear. Clothes can be extremely bothersome and hurt. The most common location for shingles usually forms in a band that spans one side of the trunk around the waistline. You can also get them on your back, located near the spinal column.
Anyone who has previously had chickenpox is at risk for getting them. Shingles attacks the nerves of the skin and is much like the herpes virus in this way. The virus multiplies and the tell-tale rash erupts, and the person now has shingles.
When I was working in Durham NC, the lady who owned the salon got shingles. She suffered from an outbreak on the top of her back and boy, it was hard to watch her try and work. She could hardly wear shirts, more-less a bra! I watched her grimace every time she moved. Everyone felt so bad for her!
Shingles can cause problems in your ability to work or even think properly. You can apply prescription creams like Valtrex or Zovirax, which were originally developed to help resolve the herpes virus
specifically, but they also work for shingles since it's part of the same virus family. The problem is that although they can help to resolve the symptoms, they can also get very expensive to buy ongoing.
If you’ve ever had the Chicken Pox, the virus remains in your body for life
. The virus usually stays inactive in certain nerves but can become active later in life (mainly from a compromised immunity) and cause the painful condition. Shingles consist of red patches of skin with small blisters (vesicles) that look very similar to early chickenpox.
VZV vaccine (Zostavax) was approved by the FDA in 2006 for Shingles treatment in patients over 60+ years of age, who have previously had Chicken Pox. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that adults 60 years and older be vaccinated to help prevent shingles. ZOSTAVAX is given as a single shot and cannot be used to treat shingles or nerve pain once you have it. Something else you should be aware of is that the vaccine contains MSG and aborted fetal cells. Yuck!
I checked on it recently and the shot is VERY expensive. If you're lucky enough to have health insurance, it may or not be covered by your medical coverage. However, in most cases, it's not. Of course, the other problem with the vaccine is that people who get it, can shed the virus for up to two weeks after receiving the vaccine. NOT good!
Furthermore, any person with a shingles rash can pass the virus to anyone who has NOT had chickenpox, but that person will develop chickenpox, not shingles. Shingles comes from HSV hiding inside the person's body, not from an outside source.
Certain conditions such as cancer, aging and certain medications can bring on an episode by compromising your immunity. Episodes can also be caused by high amounts of stress or anxiety.
Shingles generally last around 30 days. The older you get the more you are at risk for long term nerve damage. There is however, an inexpensive, effective, and preventative
shingles treatment that is so simple. You'll wonder why your doctor never told you about it!
Shingles Treatment - the Old School Way
L-lysine is an inexpensive supplement that helps block all herpes related viruses. Lysine is an essential amino acid that your body needs for growth and repair. You can obtain it from the foods you eat or drink or get it from the supplement. It is also an easy and affordable shingles treatment.
and one other essential amino acid called arginine
fight for cell absorption in your body. When enough lysine is present, the shingles virus can't be activated because it blocks out the virus.
During an outbreak, do not consume raisins, nuts (peanuts & almonds especially), seeds (like poppy or sesame seeds), cereals, chocolate of all kinds, and jello - which are all high in arginine.
Instead, consume dairy products like provolone and mozzarella cheeses especially, (and other cheeses), eggs, milk and pork in general. These foods give you high supplies of lysine. It's a simple shingles treatment that everyone can afford.
Dosage Recommendations for L-Lysine Supplement
– 1,000 mg. 3 or more times daily during outbreaks.
Take 1,000 mg. daily for prevention.
You cannot take too much Lysine! It has no side effects and no known contraindications for other medications.
Natural Remedies for Shingles
I recently had a shingles outbreak on my left boob. Before there were sores however, I kept getting these shooting pains in the area. It hurt but I saw nothing and didn't know what on earth was going on. My best friend suggested that I apply iodine to the area... When I did, I found a very small line of blisters. So I started applying iodine tincture like a crazy woman. Within a week, the blisters were gone. It's evident that iodine is a good shingles treatment.
Manuka honey is more effective at treating secondary shingle infections than antibiotics.
Find a chickenpox party and re-expose yourself to the LIVE virus! This will naturally boost your immunity and help prevent the need for any shingles treatment. Adults receive natural immunity against shingles by coming into contact with children infected with chicken pox.
Alternately, you can also keep your immunity in check by making sure you're getting enough vitamin D3.
Take prebioticps or probiotics to help support your body's immune system.
Take methylcobalamin B-12 as a daily supplement. In a body undergoing oxidative stress from shingles methyl B12 production is impaired and needs extra support. Intramuscular methylcobalamin injections are a wonderful shingles treatment.
Vitamin C is highly effective at stopping a shingles outbreak if you take enough. Intravenous vitamin C is the most effective way to treat shingles.
Consume more apple cider vinegar. Mix one tablespoon in four ounces of plain water, and drink the solution three times a day. Using a cotton ball, dab some ACV directly onto oozing lesions several times daily. (Application may be painful to bear (which could be better than the burning sensation) but it will help dry lesions up in a shorter amount of time.)
Since the immune system requires an optimally functioning thyroid function, take supplements that support thyroid function.
How to Reduce the Duration of Shingles
Take NSAIDS such as ibuprofen or naproxen to help reduce the pain of it all.
Do not scratch the rash, even though you may feel the urge to do so. This could cause a secondary infection and leave scarring. Use over-the-counter medications to help relieve pain and itching, such as Benedryl or topical analgesic creams that contain lidocaine.
Apply cool water compresses to weeping blisters for 20 minutes several times a day to soothe and help dry up blisters. This also helps remove any scabs that have formed and decreases your risks for bacterial infection. Once blisters have stopped draining or have dried, stop using compresses so the surrounding skin doesn’t get overly dry and become itchy again. Remember that weeping blisters contain the shingles virus and are contagious to anyone who is susceptible to the chickenpox virus.
You might also do well trying compresses of diluted or straight apple cider vinegar. People who have the herpes virus (cold sores and genital) continue to praise it's healing power! Apple cider vinegar is another simple shingles treatment that helps dry up sores faster. You can also take apple cider vinegar supplements which may help speed up healing by drying up sores expeditiously!
Keep the area clean with mild soap and water. Application of Vaseline or generic petroleum jelly can help healing.
Keep clothing loose (no bras or tight underwear) to avoid rubbing against the rash.
Avoid close contact with others who have NOT had chickenpox or with those who have a compromised immunity.
The fact is that you don't have to live with painful sores! Keep your options open and don't discard any natural shingles treatment that makes good sense to try!
Always consult your physician before using natural remedies, especially for anyone with preexisting conditions or anyone currently taking prescription medications. Although many efforts are made to ensure that the advice given on this site is professionally sound, the advice is not intended to replace a mutual relationship with a medical provider.
Related Pages on This Site
Boosting Immunity – Healthy Foods that Keep You Well
HSV – The Difference Between Type 1 and Type 2
HSV – The Herpes Virus
High Fructose Corn Syrup – What Nature Never Intended!
The Effects of Caffeine on Your Health
Boost Energy Levels Naturally Without Caffeine
21 Tips for Healing the Gut While Supporting the Brain
Post herpetic neuralgia, schwann cell activation and vitamin D
Wipe out shingles FAST with easy-to-use homeopathic remedies - relieve pain, eliminate burning, itching and infection
Trading chickenpox for shingles
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