My four year old recently caught chicken pox (two weeks before we went to Disneyland!). As she’s my third child, I had a pretty good idea of how to keep her comfortable. I did Google for advice, and so many advice pages talk about how to quickly “dry out” the spots – the problem is when you dry something out it makes the skin even itchier, and not just that, if a scab dries too quickly it dramatically increases the chances of scarring.
My little one was very lucky to have only three spots on her face, her scalp was covered, in her ears, behind her ears, chest and back and unfortunately in her girly bits as well. She didn’t have much on her arms and legs. I did have calamine lotion, just like my eldest she hated it and to be honest I’m not a fan, so we didn’t use it. Here is what I did use. Her scabs were practically gone in a week, we’re now four weeks on, and while she still has a few crusts in her scalp, her body only has the tiniest of pink dots left over, and as far as I can tell she has no indented scarring anywhere on her face or body.
- Firstly DO NOT use an ibuprofen based medicine for pain, pharmacists are now highly against this as it can cause a lot of inflammation and apparently causes the pox to go deeper. For pain relief and to control a fever, stick with a paracetamol based medicine only.
- Antihistamine – This is a must, an oral antihistamine to help prevent the itch. If you’re not sure what you can use, visit your local pharmacy – we used Piriton. Follow the directions given on the box.
- Topical Treatment – I used Eurax which contains a whole lot of ingredients I wouldn’t normally use, but it stopped the itching, was a lot more pleasant to use than calamine lotion and because it’s a cream base with paraffin and beeswax I also feel this helped to stop the spots prematurely drying out. We usually used it morning and evening before bed. I bought this from my local supermarket, but you’d also find it in most chemists.
- Soothing, topical pain relief – St John’s Wort Oil is known for helping with…