What is shingles?
Shingles (also known as variclla-zoster) is an inflammation that can break out anywhere on the body. It is caused by the same virus as chickenpox. Shingles are a reactivation of this variclla-zoster virus that has remained dormant in the nerve cells near the spin since the outbreak of chicken pox. A weakened immune system can reactivate the inactive virus causing the shingles.
How do you get shingles?
If you've had chickenpox, you are at risk for a shingles outbreak. Shingles outbreaks typically occur as you get older and your immune system gets weaker. Most people who get shingles are over the age of 65. If you think you might have shingles, see a doctor as soon as possible. They might be able to mitigate the pain of the outbreak if caught early enough.
How long does shingles last?
The shingles rash can last up to a month and is typically quite painful, causing a burning sensation. Shingles usually begins with a tingling sensation, or itching of the skin for several days before the rash appears. The rash may appear on the forehead, chest, abdomen, or back. Occasionally, shingles will appear on the arms or legs.