Chicken pox: a survivor’s guide…

No posts from me for a bit, because we’ve had chicken pox. Twice. First the three-year-old and then the baby.

It’s been horrible.

I’ve never understood why chicken pox is viewed as a minor irritant when it’s actually a major ball-ache. First, you can have a really sick child (thankfully, many kids get off more lightly than we did). Second, anyone in the household who hasn’t had it is almost guaranteed to get it in short order. And then there’s the huge pressure it puts on working parents, who suddenly have no childcare for potentially a week per child.

Anyway, moan over (and suggestion to avoid it follows). If chicken pox is heading your way, here are a few things worth getting in, especially if it’s a bad case:


Industrial quantities of Calpol. Set an alarm every four hours – use it. NB No Ibuprofen for chicken pox.


Calamine lotion for spots. In my day it looked like this… but there are other options.
This calamine cream goes on easier if there are lots of spots.


Anti-histamine – tastes horrible according to my toddler. Tip: mix with juice then syringe into mouth. Not for babies – needs to be prescribed for them so see/call your doctor if you think it’s needed.
Genuinely took some discomfort away. Sprays on – good job.


Also provides relief from the itch/inflammation – this time a mousse, so also applies and dries quickly.
Epsom salts – can be used in the bath. Also, consider offering your child multiple baths per day .


Also required:

  • Magazines, books, colouring/crafts, tv/films to keep a sick kid entertained. Paw Patrol magazine kept us busy for a bit.
  • Friends who’ve had it before and can come round to play when your kid feels up to it.

Here’s the NHS information on chicken pox.

And here’s a Guardian article I found interesting discussing why the NHS doesn’t offer immunisation. Yes, there’s a vaccine. It’s too late for us, but, hopefully, we’ll have a post soon explaining how/where you can get it locally and how much it costs.