Shingles affects one in three Americans every single year. This frustrating virus is a risk for most people and can be difficult to manage for those that end up developing it. While there are many medical ways to fight off this virus that work, finding ways to cope with the symptoms is also extremely important. One natural treatment option is using essential oils. In this article, we discuss the 5...
Shingles affects one in three Americans every single year. This frustrating virus is a risk for most people and can be difficult to manage for those that end up developing it. While there are many medical ways to fight off this virus that work, finding ways to cope with the symptoms is also extremely important. One natural treatment option is using essential oils. In this article, we discuss the 5 best essential oils for shingles.
Just about everyone has either had chickenpox or gotten the vaccine for it at some point in their childhood. The virus that causes chickenpox doesn’t ever leave your body. This virus is called herpes zoster and remains dormant in your system throughout your life.
As you grow older, your immune system weakens and can reactivate this virus, causing shingles. A shingles outbreak can also be caused by other factors, such as cancer, HIV/AIDS, certain medications, and stress.
Symptoms of shingles include:
- A painful, red rash – usually on one side of the body
- Burning, tingling, or numbing sensations
- Increased skin sensitivity
- Blisters that burst open and crust over
- Light sensitivity
- Fever or headaches
Treatment for Shingles
Shingles typically last for three to five weeks. As with most viruses, your immune system has built-in defenses to fight it off on its own if you are healthy. There are also certain antiviral prescription medications you can take to accelerate the healing process and decrease the risk of pain.
Seeing your doctor to discuss a safe treatment plan is not only important, but imperative.
Since stress can trigger a shingles outbreak, self-care is a vital part of the healing process. Avoiding certain stressors in your life while you recover will strengthen your immune system and help with the emotional aspect of dealing with the frustrating and painful symptoms.
Incorporating methods into your life that boost your immune system is important to consider when recovering from the shingles virus. Methods such as eating foods rich in vitamin C, drinking plenty of water, getting enough rest, and avoiding processed or unhealthy foods with high sugar content is recommended to include in your treatment plan.
Using Essential Oils for Shingles
Another popular way to deal with the frustrating and painful symptoms is using essential oils for shingles. Essential oils have been scientifically studied and proven to contain many different properties that help heal your body from a number of conditions. There are many essential oils that have antiviral and antibacterial properties to aid your body in fighting off infection. There are also many essential oils that help heal your skin from conditions like rashes, acne, dry skin, scarring, inflammation, pain, and more.
What are the best essential oils for shingles?
Among the hundreds of essential oils out there, we have narrowed down the search for the best essential oils for shingles below. While they are not doctor recommended to be used as a primary treatment, they should definitely not be discounted.
When using these oils, be sure to dilute them in a carrier oil before applying to the affected area. Coconut oil is a great option because it is moisturizing and will help prevent cracking or itching of the skin. It would also be wise to test the mixture on a small patch of skin to see how your body reacts to it first.
Another option is to diffuse the essential oils to get more of the antiviral or stress-relieving effects.
5 Best Essential Oils for Shingles
1. Capsaicin essential oil.
Capsaicin essential oil is widely known to ease pain and inflammation caused by shingles. It is also antiseptic, which may provide protection against viral infections.
2. Geranium essential oil.
Studies have shown that geranium essential oil relieves shingles pain within minutes after application to the affected area. It is also known to reduce stress and fatigue – two frustrating symptoms of shingles.
3. Peppermint essential oil.
Peppermint essential oil is perfect to use for providing a cooling sensation to painful, burning areas of the skin. It is highly relieving and works quickly. Ensure that this is diluted enough because it can create further irritation and burning if not.
4. Thyme essential oil.
Thyme essential oil has powerful anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that help your body fight off infection. It also helps heal skin after a breakout.
5. Tea tree essential oil.
Tea tree essential oil is one of the best essential oils for healing skin conditions. It has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiviral properties, making it a powerful weapon against shingles virus.