Thursday, December 16, 2010


Jayne has contracted chickenpox. For the past week, she has to stay indoors and to be kept away from most people.

Chickenpox is a very common illness among kids, particularly those under the age of 12. Itchy rashes of spots that looks like blisters will appear all over the body and usually accompanied by fever and sometimes flu-like symptoms. There are vaccines for chicken pox.

Red and itchy skin rashes usually appears first on the abdomen or back and face, and then spreads to almost every part of the body, including the scalp, mouth, nose, ears and genitals. The rash begins as multiple small red bumps that look like pimples or insect bites. They develop into thin-walled blisters filled with clear fluid, which becomes cloudy. The blister wall breaks, leaving open sores, which finally crust over to become dry brown scabs.


The question remains whether to vaccinate our children or not. The older generation will advise not since most of us didn’t have it previously and we survived well. Actually some parents think that allowing the kids to develop chickenpox may even boost certain immunisation for the kid. There is also the other group that believes vaccination is very important. Why let the child suffer when a few jabs can solve the problem. Of course there are those super ‘kiasu’ parents who will just give their children every vaccination available. I extracted this piece of information from the web for those who are interested to know.

Risks verses Benefits of Vaccination
Children who do not get the vaccine are likely to develop chickenpox. This common viral infection is usually mild and not life-threatening. Although these children may be miserable for several days, and miss a week of school or day-care (stranding parents at home), they will likely recover from the 250-500 itchy blisters with nothing more to show for it than a few small scars. Each year, however, about 200,000 of the millions of people who contract chickenpox become seriously ill with complications such as pneumonia or encephalitis (inflammation of the brain). About 2,000 of these die. Those who are at higher risk for complications include those with an already weak immune system, those with eczema or other skin conditions, adolescents, and adults.

Adults who get chicken pox usually have a much more severe, prolonged case than children. Pneumonia is common. The rate of hospitalization for chickenpox is almost 900% higher in adults than in children. Adults are more than 20 times more likely to die from this disease.Pregnant women face the additional fear of serious, even fatal, damage to the baby developing within. Clearly it is beneficial to prevent chickenpox in adults.

In the recent past, the primary benefit of getting chickenpox as a child was the likelihood of attaining lifetime immunity. While 10-20% of people who had had chickenpox would eventually develop shingles (a condition characterized by numbness, itching, or severe pain that lasts for 2-3 weeks), most would not get chickenpox again. This may now be changing in areas where the chickenpox vaccine is common. Those who have had chickenpox as children will not be re-exposed as often, if at all. Their immunity may wane over time, making shingles and adult chickenpox even more common than they are now.

The other major benefit of the vaccine is an economic one. The vaccine reduces the costs related to the disease, including the costs of missed work, school, and child-care.

The bottom line:
Do as you think is the best for your child. There is no standard answer provided for every case of chickenpox. For me, I am the old-school type,, I think going through some of these things in life will only serve to strengthen oneself. Equal for kids and adults. Having said all, please say a little prayer for Jayne and Joey when you are free.