Many people believe that it is impossible to get chicken pox twice, however this is not always the case…
Can you get chicken pox twice?
According to the NHS, it is possible to get chicken pox more than once in your life, but it is very unusual.
You may be able to catch the chicken pox virus twice if:
- You had your first case of chicken pox when you were less than 6 months old
- Your first case of chicken pox was very mild
- You have a weakened immune system
Many confuse reinfection with shingles, however shingles is just a flare up of the old chicken pox virus living inside the body.
When you get chicken pox the virus lives dormant in your body but can be triggered if your immune system is weak.
This process can cause shingles, which often appears as a burning red rash, blisters, temperature and headache.
What are the symptoms of chicken pox?
Chicken pox tends to present in a process of symptoms that develop over time.
According the NHS this starts with painful small spots that then appear as blisters before becoming scabs.
Before or after the rash appears, you might also get:
- a high temperature
- aches and pains, and generally feeling unwell
- loss of appetite
Chicken pox will often look similar for children and adults, however adults typically suffer more intense and prolonged high temperatures alongside more spots.
As a result, it is generally better to catch chicken pox as a child, as symptoms become more unpleasant the older you get.
When is chicken pox contagious?
Chickenpox is usually contagious until all of the spots on the body have scabbed over.
Shingles is not contagious, but a none-immune person can catch chicken pox from a shingles sufferer.