To some the chicken pox vaccine may seem unnecessary as chicken pox in childhood is widely perceived as a generally mild illness. It has been common place for parents to allow their children to be exposed naturally to the illness. However now, most experts advise that the chicken pox vaccine should be widely received within schools and day centres.
If your child gets chicken pox they are likely to develop a painful, itchy rash of blisters along with a fever and extreme tiredness. Many require antibiotics and the blisters often leave permanent scars.
It is likely that they will have time off school to recover. Indeed before the vaccine was introduced, chicken pox caused around 10, 500 sufferers to go to hospital. The vaccine has the ability to protect children from the illness and whilst no treatment is ever 100% effective for everyone, it will still reduce symptoms.
Chicken pox and shingles are caused by the same virus herpes zoster. Approximately 1 in 3 adults who had chicken pox as a child, have gone on to complain of painful Shingles blisters later on in life. This is due to the reactivation of the chicken pox virus. Those who are vaccinated against chicken pox also improve their chances of avoiding shingles which is often a painful and rather more serious condition for older people than chicken pox.