LittlePeopleLogo     Chicken Pox

 

DESCRIPTION

• small red bumps that become blisters and finally dry, brown crusts (all within 24 hours)

• repeated crops of these sores for 4 to 5 days on all body surfaces

• your child was around a child with chickenpox 14 to 16 days earlier.

 

CAUSE

Chickenpox is caused by a virus.

HOME CARE

1. Itching and cool baths. The best treatment for itching is a cool bath every 3 to 4 hours. Add 4 tablespoons of baking soda to the tub of water. If the itching becomes very bad or keeps your child from sleeping, give your child a nonprescription antihistamine called Benadryl. If you are uncertain of the dose call your physician.

2. Fever. You may give acetaminophen or ibuprofen for a fever. Do not give aspirin.

3. Sore mouth. Because chickenpox sores also occur in the mouth and throat, offer soft foods and cold fluids. Avoid salty foods and citrus fruits. If mouth sores become troublesome, have your child gargle or swallow 1 teaspoon of an antacid solution after meals.

4. Prevention of impetigo (infected sores). Trim your child's fingernails short. Also, wash your child's hands with an antibacterial soap frequently during the day.

5. Contagiousness. The disease can spread to other people until all the sores have crusted over, usually about 6 to 7 days after the rash begins.

CALL YOUR CHILD'S PHYSICIAN WITHIN 24 HOURS IF:

• A scab looks infected (becomes larger or drains pus).

• The fever lasts over 4 days.

• The itching is severe and doesn't respond to treatment.

• You have other questions or concerns.