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Chickenpox - need advice Rss

OK, my nephew has been diagnosed with chickenpox today (Thursday). We spent Monday with him and I have a 3 week old who obviously hasn't been immunised yet. What are the symptoms of chickenpox? How long does it last? How dangerous is it? Would love any info on chickenpox at all. Thanks.
Chicken pox is spread thru coughing and sneezing etc, and touching the blisters in the rash. It's highly contagious. Ppl with suppressed immune systems are at main risk of complications - which would include a 3 wk old baby I imagine.

A person with chicken pox is contagious 1-5 days before the rash appears, which is why it spreads so easily, most ppl don't realise they have it until they come out in a rash. New borns who develop chicken pox are at a high risk of developing pneumonia and other complications.

My advice would be to take your baby to your doctor and tell them your baby has been exposed to chicken pox. I'm sure your baby is fine but I think in this case it's better safe than sorry. Not sure if you're in nz or oz, but in nz the chicken pox vaccine is not part of the round of vaccines, you have to pay for it. Once you have it, you are immune and it can have quite serious complications for adults - which is why ppl have 'pox parties' hoping to infect their children - however, 3 wks is far too young for that so again, I would go to the doc. Good luck.
I thought you were contagious for 14days before the spots came out...aww well any way If you are breastfeeding and you have either had CP or have a natural immunity the risks of you baby getting CP are dramaticaly lowered as they are covered by your immunity.

Chicken pox look like a pimple with a blister in the middle but before the spots appear its not uncommon to have some cold symptoms. Once spots appear they are contagious until the last spot has dried out so once they all scab over your fine. Many sufferers also complain of headaches, sore throat, pain in both ears, feeling of pressure in the head and sometimes a fever.

Cheers Ness


I thought you were contagious for 14days before the spots came out



I used to think it was 14 days too but I was told by doctor it was less than a week before the spots appear, usually while you are experiencing cold/flu like symptoms. I think the 14 days thing comes from the approx time it takes for all the blisters to scab over and a person is then no longer contagious.

A newborn should have immunity for a couple of months if the mother is breastfeeding and has had chicken pox - but there is always the exception to the rule, so I'd still go to the doc for peace of mind.
My daughter had chicken pox when she was 5 weeks old. I got it too as I never had it. She went of breastfeeds & was not herself & then she got loads of spots. She was in hospital for a few days on anti virals. Her twin brother was given anti virals as a precaution. He did get chicken pox but not as bad.

Our doc advised to still get the vaccine as there are different strains of it.

There is also a very very small chance of getting it after being vaccinated. My friend knows someones toddler that did & she nearly died she had it that bad.

If your 3 week l'd get her checked out to be on the safe side. A majority of times it is harmless, but like all sickness everyone can have a different reaction.

I know this is a little late considering that you guys had contact with him on Monday but maybe apply this from now on so not to further expose your bubs to the virus...on the day my DD was born, DP's niece came out in spots, the Paediatrician at the hospital advised us that no-one who has had contact with the niece (chicken pox) should have any contact with our DD for 21 days, my DP's other niece became infected also so the 21 day period recommenced so this included no contact from two of the aunt's and also one grandmother. Hope your bubs is ok xoxo
DS2 got them at 11 weeks, after being exposed to them at 8 weeks by his big brother. CP has an incubation period, on average, of between 14-21 days. So once they are exposed, it can take 3 weeks for spots to start to appear........we found this out the hard way as we thought we were in the clear with DS2 and then wham! laugh We were isolated for the entire month of December, including over Christmas because of the pox.

On the whole bf and immunity thing...........I had CP as a child, he was ebf and he still got them. Equally I have a friend who had a similar thing happen and I've heard other stories of ebf babies of mums who had them as children and still got them.

The initial symptoms start out 'cold like' so sneezing, grizzling, may appear unwell. Then the spots appear, there could be a few or there could be hundreds; DS1 had 6-10, DS2 was covered head to foot (and everywhere in between) in them. Neither child was particularly unwell...in fact had I not seen the spots never would have known DS1 had them! DS2 did end up on antibiotics as a precaution because a couple of his spots looked 'angry' but this was due to their location in his nappy area where keeping them 'clean' was impossible, but again he was never unwell with them. He seemed to want boob more, but it was growth spurt time too so it could have been that. hehehehehehe

Children are contagious, i.e. they can pass it on to other children, from 3 days BEFORE the spots appear until the LAST spot has crusted over and this can take anywhere from 3-7 days; with DS1 it took 3 days, with DS2 it took 5.

Like any illness, given the 'right' conditions ANY illness can be serious, but the majority of children who get CP will recover fully with no lasting effects. DS1 has no scarring, DS2 has a couple, mainly on his bottom. smile With a young baby however, things can go downhill quickly, so be extra vigilant and if you are worried then seek medical advice.

Exposure doesn't = guaranteed infection either....it took DS1 at least 4 KNOWN exposures before he finally got them and my FIL has gone his entire life without getting them. DS2 got them at first exposure. Personally I am glad that they are over and done with


Our chicken pox experience was a little different - I had chicken pox as an adult before having kids. All my kids were breastfed. My first born had the immunisation, then caught it in preschool - he was very covered in pox.

My second was immunised, had it as a toddler, then again in preschool and I suspect she is about to get it again now (as it is going around the school).

My third child had it at 8 months, then again at 12 months and we had her tested at 18 months to check she had immunity.

Every person is different, there is no blanket answer for everyone. Having immunisation doesn't stop you getting the virus, it only reduces the effect.

I am very thankful for the immunisation, my daughters are not scarred. I thought there was something wrong with my kids immune system but it is just how they reacted to the virus - no two kids are the same.
Thanks everyone. For anyone else interested, I have since been recommended by both my local council as well as the immunisation centre at the Royal Childrens hospital in Melbourne that children should have a 2nd chickenpox immunisation, as it is quite common for kids to get chickenpox after they have had the immunisation at 18mths. Also, September/October is prime season for chickenpox, plus I have a 3week old so want to protect her as well. So my DD is off for an extra needle tomorrow (haven't told her yet though ....)
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