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Chickenpox is often perceived as a mild illness, but it can lead to complications, especially in young children, infants, and those with weakened immune systems.

Understanding chickenpox

Chickenpox is a highly contagious disease caused by the varicella-zoster virus. It's characterised by an itchy rash that turns into fluid-filled blisters. While most children recover without serious issues, some can develop severe complications, such as bacterial infections, pneumonia, or encephalitis.

The case for vaccination

The chickenpox vaccine is safe and effective. It's typically administered in two doses, with the first dose given at around 12-15 months of age and requires a second dose. The vaccine not only protects your child from chickenpox but also significantly reduces the risk of developing shingles later in life.

Close up of chickenpox rash on baby's stomach

Safety and side effects

The safety of the chickenpox vaccine has been thoroughly reviewed and confirmed by numerous studies. Side effects are generally mild and may include soreness at the injection site, fever, or a mild rash. These are minor compared to the potential severity of chickenpox infection.

Chickenpox : top tips

  1. Know the signs: familiarise yourself with the symptoms of chickenpox so you can act quickly if your child becomes infected.
  2. Prevent spread: teach your child good hygiene practices to prevent the spread of chickenpox to others.
  3. Comfort measures: be prepared with ways to soothe chickenpox symptoms, such as oatmeal baths and calamine lotion, if your child does get sick.
  4. Stay updated: keep track of vaccination records and stay informed about booster shots or additional doses as recommended.

 

Choosing to vaccinate against chickenpox is a proactive step towards ensuring your child's health and wellbeing. The chickenpox vaccine is a testament to the success of vaccination programs in reducing the incidence of childhood diseases.

Click here to read our other articles on Chickenpox: https://childhealthy.co.uk/?s=Chickenpox

Sources:

  • NHS website: comprehensive information on chickenpox and the chickenpox vaccine.
  • Public Health England: guidelines on vaccination and prevention of chickenpox.

Disclaimer: Information contained in this article is intended as general advice and does not replace a medical assessment. If you are concerned about your child, please contact your doctor for advice.

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