Shingles can be very uncomfortable. Compounding this is the fact that shingles are generally triggered by stress or illness in the patient. Only people who have had chicken pox, a normally benign childhood virus, will have a shingles flare-up. Shingles can occur anywhere on the body and present as water-filled blisters overlying red irritated skin. As the virus continues, the blisters fill with pus and begin to break open, dry out and fade.
Keep the blisters wet to help dry them out. It may sound counter-intuitive, but it really does work. As the moisture on your skin begins to dry, it evaporates and takes some of the moisture from the blisters along with it. This will pull moisture away and force the blisters to dry out.
Use over-the-counter drying agents such as calamine lotion. Calamine naturally dries out skin and the rashes that plague it. Normally used for poison ivy, poison oak and insect bites, calamine lotion is a long-trusted addition to most medicine cabinets. Once the blisters begin to dry out, stop using the calamine lotion and allow the scabbed areas to heal.
Make a paste with baking soda and water. This paste has been used to dry rashes and help heal bee stings for ages. Simply put a teaspoon of baking soda in a small bowl or measuring cup and add water until you achieve the texture of paste. It should be moist, but not watery. Apply the paste to the effected area as often as necessary to help calm the itching and dry the blisters.
Make an ointment from aloe vera pulp and cayenne pepper. These ingredients together will help soothe the rash while pulling moisture out, causing it to dry out and begin to heal. Aloe vera is a well-known soothing and healing agent.
Good hygiene is important to the healing of your shingles virus. Keep the area clean, using gentle soap. When drying the area, always pat dry rather than rubbing to avoid further damage to the already fragile skin.
The drainage from a shingles rash carries the virus. Those with a shingles rash should be very careful to avoid exposing others to the drainage. A person with an active viral infection should avoid young children and the elderly as their immune systems are already compromised.