Jan 29, 2012

Chicken Pox isn't so bad

About a month ago my husband showed me a small red dot behind my daughters ear.  And another.  And a few more on her stomach.

She definitely had the chicken pox.

It was 5:30 on a Saturday evening.  I grabbed my Herbal Home Health Care book by Dr Christopher and quickly ran to Shangri La before they closed at 6:00.  I stocked up on herbs, namely Yarrow, Peppermint tea, and Catnip tea.  Comfrey and red raspberry leaf was already stocked in our kitchen.

My 2-year-old didn't seem to suffer much from it; her case was mild besides a nasty pox on her eyelid and a couple in her genitals.  The herbs definitely helped, and she quickly learned to request them by name.  We gave her an herbal bath by pouring yarrow into a nylon stocking and tying it off and giving it to her to play with.  Comfrey powder was also dumped into the bath.  She loved the comfrey because it was very soothing for her.  The yarrow helps the body sweat to get rid of the toxins.  Don't suppress the disease, get it out!

We tried to give her herbal tea with peppermint and red raspberry leaf, sweetened with honey, but she wouldn't drink it.

The other thing we did to help her was give her a warm catnip tea enema.  Yes, an enema.  Why?  The bowels are designed to quickly absorb liquid, and an enema is one of the quickest ways to deliver an herb to where the body needs it.  Yep, we did that.  It really wasn't that bad.

The hardest part was waiting for the inevitable 2nd round to hit my boys.  Merry Christmas everybody, we're staying home.

On Christmas eve, it happened.  Both my 4-year-old and my 1-year old broke out together.  Peter loved telling everyone that he got chicken pox for Christmas.  My one year-old is breastfeeding, so I wondered if he would get it at all, but I'm confident that he had a bad enough case to develop an immunity.

This second round was worse than the first.  My husband's boss told Michael that chicken pox is said to have a weak round and then a strong round, so if you are going to try to get it, get it from someone who has it bad.  Maybe that's true.  I think it is more likely that Helen's case was mild for OUR family, and the virus that she spread to the boys had learned to overcome some of our family's immune system.

Again, the herbs were brought out and the oh-so-fun tea baths came for the children.  My older son drank his tea and talked us out of the enemas.  For a couple of days they both slept most of the day, and drank juice to their heart's content.  A homeschooling family through and through, we watched YouTube videos explaining what chicken pox is, and how it doesn't come from chickens.  We learned what childhood diseases are, and why they will never have chicken pox again.  Peter is excited that his immune system is stronger now.

A note on the chicken-pox vaccine.  Assuming it worked, my children would have had to have booster shots for the rest of their life to avoid getting chicken pox.  I know families who vaccinated against the pox during childhood only to get horrible cases when they were teenagers.  The younger you are when you get it, the better.  My 4-year-old had it much worse than my 1-year old, and 4 is still pretty young to be getting it.  I am VERY glad that I had chicken pox in my youth because I'm pregnant now, and I could pass it on to my unborn baby if I caught it now.  My husband didn't need the chicken pox booster shot when he went on his mission because he had it as a child.

Was chicken pox fun?  No, of course not.  But they survived!  It wasn't terrible!  It's better than getting poked with a needle several times during your life, or worse, getting it when you are older.  The worst part for my children was the quarantine, especially during the holidays.  However, we had a cozy Christmas as a family, and it was really nice to slow things down for a change.

For my next child, I will keep my eye out for chicken pox parties for her.  This is especially true as I have more children.  It would have been really nice for all three of them to get the chicken pox together and get it over with all at once.  Finding pox parties can be difficult.  I announced the opportunity on facebook, etc, but Christmas is poor timing for most people who would otherwise have been interested.  That's okay.  Good luck, parents out there.  If your kids do have the chicken pox, don't be afraid to let other people know.  If you are willing, host a party.  Yes, some people gawk at the idea of a party, but there are just as many people who are itching (pun intended) to get their child permanently immune.

Chicken pox doesn't have to be a big deal.  It is fairly easy for all but the weakest immune systems to overcome.  Overcoming a genuine disease strengthens the immune system when tougher viruses come around.  Herbs can greatly diminish the discomfort.  As my children's scabs finish healing, I am grateful that they have passed through this trial, and that they have stronger bodies because of it.  I wouldn't have it any other way.

Well!  Now that that's over, and our visiting extended family in January to exchange gifts is all through, maybe my life will get back in order and I can start blogging again!  That's the plan...  :)


Amanda said...

How refreshing! I had the pox myself when I was 12, and got it BAD, but I'm really happy in the knowledge that my immune system was able to fight this off and be strengthened as a result. I'll be looking for a chicken pox party for my kiddos one of these days.

Good lifestyle choices said...

Probiotics, raspberry leaf and yogurt improve gum health, prevent plaque stains from bacteria and help with keeping canker sores at bay

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