Shingles is caused by viral infection affecting the nerve tissue. The condition is caused due to varicella zoster virus and associated with rash and severe pain on the patch of skin, supplied by the nerve. The symptoms associated with the condition can last from two weeks to a month. Typically it is more frequent in elderly or individuals with lowered immunity.
Reports suggest that about one in five people develop shingles some time in their life. The condition may occur at any age but is more common among individuals above the age of 50 years. Shingles usually infect individuals who have had chicken pox in the past. Shingles may also be caused by herpes zoster virus.
The condition may develop on any part of the body. Post a chicken pox infection, some virus cells remain dormant in the nerve roots along the spinal cord. Under normal conditions they don’t cause harm nor manifest any symptoms. Drop in immunity can trigger the virus to get activated leading to shingles on leg.
What Are The Symptoms Of Shingles On Leg?
The condition usually develops on one leg and affects only one nerve at a time. The symptoms of shingles occur on the area that the nerve typically supplies. In rare cases, multiple nerves may be involved. The symptoms are as follows,
- Localized pain along a band is observed. The pain may be mild to severe in intensity. The pain is constant and associated with burning sensation. Intermittent episodes or stabbing sharp pain are also observed. In general the skin is very sensitive to touch.
- The rash develops about two to three days after the manifestation of the pain. The rash is characterized by itchy blisters on the skin. These blisters last for a week before reappearing aging. The tissue surrounding the blisters is also inflamed due to the virus. This episode may usually last for two to four weeks.
- Additionally, an individual may have systemic symptoms like sensation of illness and high grade fever.
Shingles are usually associated with two common complications which include post herpetic neuralgia and skin infection.
Home Remedies To Treat Shingles On Leg
There are certain tips that can help in hastening the recovery and alleviating some of the symptoms associated with the condition,
- Wear a loosely fitting cotton cloth, which helps reduce skin irritation by affected skin.
- Local application of ice cubes or wet dressing or a cold bath can help reduce the pain.
- Always keep the rash covered with non adhesive dressing. This helps reduce the pain and also hastens the healing process.
- Add a couple of drops of tea tree oil to aloe vera gel and apply it on to the skin. Tea tree oil has strong anti viral properties while aloe vera can help reduce symptoms like itching and burning.
- Alternatively local application of paste of turmeric is also helpful as it reduces inflammation and burning.
- Ensure that your diet is healthy and nutritious. Shingles commonly affects individuals with lowered immunity levels. Regular exercising for about 10 to 15 minutes can also help improve immunity and hasten recovery.
- Homeopathic drug sulphur and Arsenic alba are very potent in dealing with skin related ailments. They can help alleviate and reduce the severity of the rash. Other homeopathic drugs like Graphitis can also be useful in shingles around the abdomen or armpits.