What Are Shingles and Who is Most Susceptible?

What are Shingles?

I was shocked when a cousin of mine, in her 80s, told me she had shingles. First of all, I wasn’t sure what that meant and then upon research, articles claimed that it usually affected people age 80 and over. But why should that be? And why should people who have never had chicken pox not be susceptible to shingles?

What are shingles? Shingles, also known as herpes zoster, is a viral infection of the nerve roots. It is a painful outbreak of a rash or blisters caused by varicella-zoster virus (VZV) and usually occurs on one side of the body.

What is the connection to chicken pox?

Further, this is the same virus that causes chicken pox - and can be caused by an overtaxed immune system. It occurs when the virus that causes chickenpox starts up again in your body. After you get better from chicken pox, the virus remains dormant in your nerve roots. Sometimes it stays dormant but other times it 'wakes up' - and no one is sure why. It is believed that it can be triggered by disease, stress, medications, and weakening of the immune system.

In other words chicken pox and shingles are the same thing. Chicken pox being the initial infection.

I know that my cousin had had a stressful day and perhaps she had been under stress for quite awhile. She was also on a medication. Although the fact that stress is a killer has been denied almost forever, we do know now for sure that stress does affect our immune systems.

How does it happen?

In the case of shingles, remnants from chicken pox cling to the nerve fibers that run from our sensory nerve cells to the skin. Shingles will then attack when the body is most vulnerable for reasons mentioned above; also when you are recovering from the flu or a cold.

What medical treatment is available?

There is medical treatment for shingles. Antiviral medications can usually clear up a case of shingles within a month’s time. Unfortunately, about 20 per cent of people who get shingles may develop what is known as post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN), a very painful condition that can last for months and sometimes years.

The vaccine for shingles is known as Zostavax. It is an FDA approved drug for use by people over 65 years of age. This age group is considered the most susceptible since the immune system is said to weaken with age. People with compromised immune systems can also use this drug. The vaccine has been shown to prevent shingles in a little over half of those tested.

If you are vaccinated and have an outbreak, the painful symptoms will be significantly reduced. Common side effects of this vaccine are swelling at the site of injection with redness, pain and tenderness, and headache. But be sure to acquaint yourself with all the side effects, especially if you are taking other drugs.

STATISTICS:

Statistics claim that half of the people over 80 will develop shingles. Avoid contact with people with shingles until the rash heals. Anyone with shingles can spread chicken pox to people who have never had chicken pox.

It seems the best advice is to keep your immune system healthy and strong.

See link below for more suggested reading including healthy eating:

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Comments 47 comments

people magnet profile image

people magnet 7 years ago from Florida's East Coast

Very informative article, Good presentation. Maintaining a strong and healthy immune system is critical in our dangerous environment. The best way to strengthen our immune system is intracelluar Glutathione augmentation.

Thanks again for that great article.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Hello people magnet.

I agree that we have to keep our immune systems strong - it's everything. I'll research intracelluar Glutathione augmentation - that's new to me.

Thanks for the info and thanks for stopping by.


einron profile image

einron 7 years ago from Toronto, Ontario, CANADA

My mother suffered from shingles for years and she was hospitalized. It was very painful. Blisters appear in a sort of ring around half the waist. It was supposed to be contagious and when we visited her at the hospital, we had to wear protective gear.

The Chinese call Shingles "Snake" as the blisters coil around one side of the waist from front to back, and they believe that if the blisters completely cover the whole waist, then the patient would die. I do not know whether this is true or not but I know that my mother suffered a lot. The blisters are oozing a little bit.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Dear einron,

I do hope your mother is feeling better. It seems that sometimes this can end quickly or go on indefintely. Interesting to know that if we never had chicken pox we would not get it.

Now I wonder just how common this is.

Glad you wrote me. Thanks.


marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 7 years ago from USA

Stress took me there, both times the last few years. Very painful electric like shocks were so hard to deal with!!! NO rash the last time, but I never want them again! I'm trying to remain calm, breathe, =)) yes, I did have the chicken pox as a child, but I understand some people get them regardless.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Marisuwrites I am finding out that this is even more common than I thought. As I mention it to people, it seems folks of all ages have been affected. And some so very severely.

And yes, stress for sure will disable us.

Thanks a lot for sharing this information.


theherbivorehippi profile image

theherbivorehippi 6 years ago from Holly, MI

My mom had shingles last spring and she was in so much pain and they lasted so long. It was horrible....I would talk to her on the phone everyday and she was so frustrated and depressed from being stuck inside. They were really bad I guess. Informative hub! Rated up!


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 6 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Isn't it interesting that by taking the vaccine in our youth we are more susceptible to getting shingles. But no vaccine - no shingles. Too bad about your mom.

My cousin has a severe case and she was 80! I think she was stressed out.


Julie 6 years ago

Has anyone experienced stomach swelling with the shingles? my stomach has swollen on the same side that I have the rash?


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 6 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Hello Julie! Thanks for that input. I'm not aware of anyone having stomach swelling but perhaps it happens in so many different degrees that it may not be noticeable to all.

Anyone who reads your comment may become aware, in hindsight, that this was a symptom.

Thanks for taking the time to comment.


mildred1 6 years ago

I am 51yrs old I have had shingles for about one month the rash was on my lower back and up under my arm and up under my breast. The rash is gone, but I am still having severe pain especially. Like my breast is full of milk but I can,t get the milk out how long Will this last.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 6 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

It's so hard to say how long it will last. In my research it can be months - even years. Depends on the individual of course and the immune system and stress in your life. My cousin seems to have gone through it quickly. She was under a great deal of stress but fortunately her diet was good - and she had to let go of the stress disabling her - which was being concerned and worrying about someone else.

Maybe acupuncture for the breast, and seeing a Chinese herbalist will be beneficial.


Grace 5 years ago

I am only 35 and have suffered with post herpetic neuralgia for just about 2 years now and it effects my facial nerve. Without getting to technical it is extremely painful in my right ear, eye, and right side of my head. I am too young for the zoster vaccine and have been fighting to get it. I would highly recommend if you are able to get this vaccine to get and try to avoid this horrible painful disease.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Thanks for taking the time to read and comment Grace. Can anything else help - like acupuncture for example? You may be too young for the vaccine but also too young to have your life controlled by this.

If you do try something alternative and have results I hope you will visit again and let the readers know.

I'm glad you wrote.


Tarah_ 5 years ago

Great hub and great way to explain shingles… My mother had shingles a year ago and is still feeling the effects. Just to be different, her shingles started in her foot and travelled up to her hip. I’m hoping that the pain in her foot won’t stay for much longer…


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

This seems to be happening more and more. I didn't know the after effects could be felt for so long. I'm glad you shared this information - it keeps us informed.


Liz 5 years ago

My mother is 80 and has been diagnosed with shingles in her back and she has a stubbing pain in her right side of her stomach that goes around her back, she was told that it's a nerve that contracts against the bone marrow that causes the pain. She's been given two medications to take 3 times a day, she just barely start taking it and causes her vomiting. I don't know how to help her out... She's in Peru and I live here in the States. Any suggestions?


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

I really don't know Liz. Here in the U.S. there is medication but I admit I would be afraid of it. I always thought of Peru as having more effective traditional medicine, no? When my cousin in her 80s had shingles she was given medication and as a former nurse she felt kind of comfortable taking it. But there was a also a very stressful relative in her life and when she got away from this relative - it seemed to help a bit.

If your mother does take something traditional I hope you will share it with us.


Leigh 5 years ago

Sorry to say but I read one comment on if you do not have chicken pox when you are young then you don't get shingles---that's not true. I have never had chicken pox and got a small case of shingles in my early twenties.

Now my mother-n-law has them at the age of 80. They hurt.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Interesting Leigh. The medical profession claims you have to have had chicken pox and shingles is a recurrence. But then our medical profession is not always correct.

Thanks for the information.


kris 5 years ago

Great page. Thanks.

For some very useful info check out this URL:

http://www.patient.co.uk/doctor/Shingles.htm

I'm a very young and normally fit and healthy 64 (very good genes), and I recently had shingles below the navel down to the groin all the way to my middle back. Started with a few viral (herpes) blisters about 1"x0.5", and within a few hours it turned into a major eruption, covering the aforementioned area within a day or two. Prior to the onset of the blisters I had an increasing and annoying tightness in my lower abdomen for a few days, as if someone was tightening a steel band around the area. I'd also been constipated for a few days. The constipation lasted for well over over two weeks, and at first nothing would help: glycerol suppositories, a hospital administered enema solution (I kept quiet about the shingles), and then finally some slight movement with Gaviscon liquid. The constipation then returned for another week or more, when I finally had some glorious relief.

Not having much respect for allopathic medicine, and being sorta peed-off with my personal situation (stress?) I kept the shingles to myself (I'd just been unceremoniously and unjustly dumped by my employer, and wasn't feeling in the most positive of moods). I self-treated with 99% Aloe Vera Gel x2 a day, lots of meditation and Yogic breathing exercises, and stayed at home hermit-like for over three weeks. It's the middle of winter here in S/W Australia, so it wasn't hard to vegetate in front of the fire, with my laptop and my Amazon Kindle, and my cat, for company. The blisters finally retreated after about three weeks, leaving some rather unsightly dark scarring, and lots of tender skin. Its been about a month now, and the abdominal tightness remains, making some physical things a bit of an effort, such as climbing in and out of bed, or any hard physical exertion that requires the use of stomach muscles. Coughing is difficult, and sneezing, well, you don't really want to know!!

When the blisters had almost cleared up I hesitantly sought some medical advice for the tightness and swelling, and the constipation, but unfortunately I had to use a pretty useless Medico who factory-processes his patients, with little to no communication - he was the only one I could see at short notice who bulk-billed (finances, as well as my stomach, were pretty tight by this time). He did inform me, very briefly, about PHN, and prescribed Amitrytaline, which I threw in the bin after a couple of days. I'm philosophically opposed to Anti Depressants, and though I was peed-off I was definitley not depressed (if you take anti-d's when not depressed can they make you manic? LOL!!).

Fortunately I don't have PHN-associated pain, and totally sympathise with those who do! Just the tightness. It hasn't really affected my day to day life, but it has slowed me down somewhat - I'm aTaxi Driver, and helping the elderly in my job can be uncomfortable, but I like to give good customer service, so I deal with it with a smile.

Next stop: work on my usually excellent immune system!

Thanks for reading this mini-novel, but I just felt I had to share my experience with others, and I sincerely hope that these words will broaden your perspectives on this rather unfortunate condition.


kris 5 years ago

Just for your further info, I suppose I should mention that my bladder is not working too well, probably due to pressure resulting from the abdominal tension - like, hard to strain, and I'm up four or five times a night.

Have had a PSA test and other stuff, but everything's AOK in that line (he sez with a sigh of relief!!)


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Thanks for sharing with all of us.

There is no better information than a personal experience. And how you handled it. Here in the US, I find the pharmaceuticals absolutely alarming and would rather treat myself. There is always a solution and I like the idea of using aloe vera gel.

You did mention stress and what better way of handling than yoga, meditation - and not toxic antidepressants - and above all knowing we have to keep our immune systems strong.

I'm sure your cat was helpful!

Thanks for writing!


Lita C. Malicdem profile image

Lita C. Malicdem 5 years ago from Philippines

@Julie, I'm suffering the same feeling of tightness, heaviness due to swelling on my lower tummy up to this day. I was 62 when I got infected with shingles on my right thigh. I wrote about my painful battle with shingles here, a disease many seems not well-informed about. It's been 3 years now and I just learned from this hub that I'm a hostage of PHN from my thigh up to my tummy and buttocks, until when will it last, I don't know. I take Celebrex once in a while to ease my pain.

@BKCreative, this hub is great! It informs to forewarn others who had chicken pox before to avoid stress and depression that put risk to their immune defense particularly against shingles. I know the virus is still deep in my nerve roots because of this pain. Thanks for your mention of the shingles vaccine Zostavax. Just in case. LOL!


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Thank you so much Lita C. Malicdem. By sharing a personal experience it makes the hub more helpful and informative. I'm glad that we are beginning to realize that stress is a killer in one way or another - and we also have to deal with food with little or no nutritional value also weakening our immune system.

While a drug is recommended for treatment and I suppose anything is better than the kind of suffering this puts you through - I wonder what alternative treatments are available. I'll have to check.

Thanks again for you input!


passinthru 5 years ago

Julie, other,

I'm bout 21 days into my own battle with Shingles. 49 year old mom of 2 and full time IT person.

It started as lower back pain, which I wrote off as normal gettin' old pain after having done a long bike ride. I also wrote off the slight rash I had as perhaps being from the bike shorts rubbing.

When the pain got really bad and started wrapping around to the front, I saw a doctor who took one look and diagnosed shingles.

I started on the usual anti-virals for a few days but when the pain grew to be excruciating, she prescribed Gabapentin. I've been taking that since the 14th.

The pain is no longer excruciating. It's now just very painful.

Julia, I do have heaviness and the bloating and the side that had the shingles (which are now clearing) looks a little distended, like I'm not symmetric.

If I sit for long periods of time, still without talking, then the pain subsides. But I'm a working mom of 2 so that can't last too long.

I'm up to 900mg of Gabapentin a day, but I don't want to go beyond that because it is making me a very tired space cadet.

I never realized how debilitating this is. I'm a Software Engineer and it is causing me to fall behind on my work, because of the pain AND the meds.

A question: At what point is this considered POST-herpetic neuralgia? I believe my symptoms (pre-rash) started around Sept 1.

Please tell me this gets better.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Hello passinthru! I can tell you it gets better because my elder cousin came through it beautifully. This was about 10 years ago and she never told us how much she was suffering but she was in her 80s then. Whew! But I do remember a very stressful time for her that happened right before this outbreak. It seemed only weeks for her but being a former nurse she decided to get on medication immediately - but I don't remember what was recommended back then.

I must thank you for sharing your personal experience with the readers here. You told us how it began and what medication - this is useful information. You will see in comments above that everyone has a different experience.

I've read that it can last weeks, months even years after the rash heals - the pain may linger. But those that get on medication immediately shorten the duration.

Perhaps when you do feel better you can let us know the stages. Hope you are getting enough rest and reducing stress.

I'm glad you wrote.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Hello passinthru! I can tell you it gets better because my elder cousin came through it beautifully. This was about 10 years ago and she never told us how much she was suffering but she was in her 80s then. Whew! But I do remember a very stressful time for her that happened right before this outbreak. It seemed only weeks for her but being a former nurse she decided to get on medication immediately - but I don't remember what was recommended back then.

I must thank you for sharing your personal experience with the readers here. You told us how it began and what medication - this is useful information. You will see in comments above that everyone has a different experience.

I've read that it can last weeks, months even years after the rash heals - the pain may linger. But those that get on medication immediately shorten the duration.

Perhaps when you do feel better you can let us know the stages. Hope you are getting enough rest and reducing stress.

I'm glad you wrote.


Cheryl 4 years ago

This is the most painful illness I've ever felt ever. I've had shingles for a month now. The blisters are drying up but the nerve pain keeps me taking round the clock Meds. I take neurontin every 5 hours,2capsules. Then I take a muscle relaxer called baclofen every 6 hours 1 tablet. But the worst problem is the tightness and swollen of my stomach. It's like someone tightening a vise around my gut and it keeps me up nights. And I'm miserable with

this stomach pain. I've had this for a month now. I have an ice pack on my back as I speak. Just horrible illness


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 4 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Good grief Cheryl! It seems that after all these years there would be better treatment for this fairly common ailment. What are we missing here? Is it time to seek alternative treatments like acupuncture, herbs and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)? About the stomach tightness, I wonder if massaging it yourself with pure shea butter would help. There is lots of information about shea butter and its amazing healing properties here on hub pages and the internet.

By the way - I hope when you do get better and have the time you will write again and share with us what did work. I'm concerned as a I get older.

Thanks for commenting!


beewee 4 years ago

never had the chickenpox. neither my daughter. she's pregnant and was tested. results that she is immune to chicken pox. wondering if i am immune too. am 65 and wondering if i should get the shingles shot?


Terri brown 4 years ago

I have had shingles for two weeks now - from my navel right around my right side to my spine. I am 61. And yes, the most horrific pain ever. I feel very swollen around my abdomen also. The first week I could not get enough pain-killers - just a bit better now and the blisters seem to be fading. Unfortunately, my rash did not appear until the end of the 72 hour window for anti-virals so I guess i just have to endure. To Cheryl, I sumpathise and i don't think we can massage the swelling - I find just touching the skin is really painful

Terri


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 4 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

beewee, I'd be afraid to get the shingles shot. No telling what the side effects would be. Just keep your immune system strong, get enough sun (seems we never do) and enjoy lots of laughs.

Terri brown, thanks for passing that tip on to Cheryl. A friend just called me yesterday to tell me she suddenly has the most painful blisters and is surprised and now I am concerned - I will check with her later. I'm glad so many people have found this site as a place to share. Sometimes I think that in itself is helpful - just to let it out. Do write again if you feel up to it and thanks a lot for sharing. I've been reminded again that I better get more sunshine (which now doctors are claiming our lack of sun is the cause of so many ailments). Thanks for writing.


Cheryl 4 years ago

Hi everyone, well I've been sick with shingles Now since jan 14 and the shingles are drying up but the stomach and back pain are what got me still. I'm constipated, swollen stomach and back feel like I could burst

I'm still miserable and up all night with different degrees of pain. I've had ice pack on all day

today, been very bad day. I'm going to the gastro doctor Monday to see if he has any suggestions for this demon. This is the most miserable I've ever been in my life. Thank u for all ur concerns and I will pray for your

recovery as well. I'm 57 years old. I've been off work 8 weeks. I don't know if I'll be able to go back. I'm stuck in this house and I'm going crazy. Shea butter did not work but I thank u. I got a stool softener that helps move your bowels from the doctor. And I ordered homopathic arnica Montana 30c by the company broekle and Taft for swelling of the stomach. 3 tablets under the tongue 3 times a day. Helps the

swelling alittle. Cost about 11.00

on amazon. Will kept u posted after I go to dr. On Monday.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 4 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Thanks for coming back Cheryl and sharing the tip about the homeopathic formula. There just has to be something that can help.

By the way I hope your mattress is serving you well. Turns out mine has been the cause of some serious aches and pains - almost to the point of being totally incapacitated. Once I threw my blankets and everything on the floor - since sleeping on the floor is recommended for back pain - about 75% of the pain was instantly gone! I was on my way to being totally disabled because of an old mattress.

I point this out because I know so many walking around in pain and it may be the mattress. Such stress weakens our immune system which of course makes us susceptible to every other horror.

Do keep us posted.

Thanks again!

Carolyn


Caroline 4 years ago

I first had shingles when i was 7yrs old after chickenpox. Im now 29 and suffering my 5th bout of this horrible painful attack. It always returns to the same area my right hip and thigh towards my groin. Docs have gave me anti viral tablets and strong painkillers but im still in agony. There has only been 6mths since my last attack and they seem to come worse each time than the last. I cant keep dealing with this every six mths to a yr. I will go mad. Here in the uk the the injection is not avaliable to anyone yet but im hoping it will soon and then i will fight to get it. Hope everyone who is suffering alone with me feels better soon


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 4 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

Caroline you have educated me. I had no idea that anyone could be affected at such a young age and then again and again. Just reading this is painful and I don't know why it should be different in the UK.

Have you sought alternative treatments like acupuncture or been to a TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) doctor. I visited when I was in Beijing and they were able to tell a large group of us individually what was wrong with just a touch to the pulse and looking at our tongue. They were always 100% right and if interested the prescriptions were all herbal. I bought a prescription for back, neck and shoulder pain and never had a problem again - 4 years later.

I'm glad you wrote but so sorry to hear about your suffering.


John 4 years ago

Kris, how is your condition, eventually? I am suffering the same condition as you now, after having chicken pox.


Blisters 4 years ago

So I've had a pretty interesting experience with shingles. I'm 18 years old and got them after a mega-stressful week full of not being nice to my immune system. The prodrome was the worst, kind of like having a sunburn without any change in the skin appearance coupled with a generally sick feeling and pain all down my right side. Within a couple days I had blisters showing up all the way down my thigh and one or two on my hip and lower back. Loose clothes and painkillers really helped out. Within 4 days I got Valacyclovir and took it religiously. I had pretty concerning constipation that I remedied with stool softener...it didn't work as soon as I wanted but did provide some relief. I'm now 3 weeks in and the blisters have almost all scabbed and fallen off, though darker patches of skin remain along with some increased sensitivity. I'm still not feeling 100% but hopefully will be within another week. Just in time for finals.

This page was really helpful to see other peoples symptoms...I appreciate you doing this and wish everyone the best with their recovery


conradofontanilla profile image

conradofontanilla 3 years ago from Philippines

Wild type, from the environment, and virus from the varicella vaccine against chickenpox gives the cause of shingles. That caused by the wild type is worse than that caused by the virus from varicella vaccine. Zostavax vaccine against shingles may reduce incidence but not complete protection. I read form other Hubs that aloe vera can treat shingles. I have two Hubs on shingles.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 3 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

I am so glad so many of you write in and share your experiences. This is how we help each other. I have an elderly cousin and one week she was so stressed out by other people that she suddenly had shingles. Is stress a major part of the problem? It seems stress does affect our immune system so we have to be careful.


conradofontanilla profile image

conradofontanilla 3 years ago from Philippines

Literature says there are three major causes of reawakening of the herpes zoster virus that results in shingles: stress, old age, weakened immune system. The gel of the leaf rubbed twice a day on the blisters gives favorable results in about five days, according to some comments in another Hub.


Alan 3 years ago

When my shingles flare up it is always a 100% due to STRESS!!! It's a dull pain on my right side like your middle front Abdomen. It also makes me feel bloated!! Also like I slept wrong on my side feels sore but you know its not that because this last longer then a couple of days. All you can do is relax and maybe do some breathing meditation? But the bloated feeling makes uncomfortable to set in chair also when you eat it's even worse! Hope this helps!


winkleya 3 years ago

Also if you do have that bloated feeling where your stomach muscles seem to make it tight try to just release the muscles and let them relax this helps with the stress as well.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 3 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

conradofontanilla - thanks for passing on that tip. This is something we all can do and it is certainly worth a healthy try. And stress seems to be a leading factor. It scares me because after hurting my back I have been stressed. But I know that I must change this and I have.

Alan again it seems like stress is a leading factor and it makes sense - it does destroy our immune system - and many of my elders knew that stress could kill but for decades it has been ignored. Your tips help a lot. I am actually getting advice from health care advisors to breathe, and relax.

Thanks winkleya - it is all these personal tips that will make the difference as so many suffer with shingles and it doesn't seem as if we are getting enough help.


David 3 years ago

I'm in the middle of an attack. Rash around my right abdomen. Swelling underneath the rash which is staying even whilst the rash is going - I've suffered a fortnight so far and I am 76 years old. Had a mild dose about twenty years ago and hoped I was immunised by it - but no such luck!

The deep grinding and stabbing pains are the worst. They are permanent and ruin my sleep.

Taking para cetamol and codeine but it only suppresses it somewhat. Of course the painkillers knock ou my bowel so I am constipated too. I take a senna tablet every night.

Life is hell and I just hope it goes away asap.

I am really grotty with everybody and myself too. I advise to apologise frequently to your partner.


BkCreative profile image

BkCreative 3 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City Author

David I am so sorry to hear about your suffering. I am here with a recurring rash and keep using shea butter to reduce the itching - this has never happened before.

I just don't know why here in the USA and it sounds like you are in Britain - why are we suffering so miserably with this disease. What can we add to our diet to help prevent the problem?

I keep reading that stress is part of the problem - so even though I am suffering with other health issues I remind myself to take deep breaths - and let go of a lot of things that normally would have had me fighting!

As far as constipation - my daughter in law taught me to have a small cup of coffee each morning - it does work David. I always get a good organic grind from Ethiopia and I am regular. I've used senna too which has been helpful.

The equivalent of paracetamol here in the US is acetaminophen and a popular brand is Tylenol. I mention that because you said you got some relief and maybe others reading this may find a bit of relief. But of course it shouldn't be overdone.

Thanks for writing and please let us know when you are better or if you find other ways of relief!

Carolyn

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