This Morning: Dr Chris explains symptoms of shingles

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As with other skin conditions there are several dos and don’ts.

Chief among these, as well as not letting dressings or plasters stick to the rash, is not using antibiotic cream, according to the NHS.

The reason for this is because it can slow down the healing process, thus increasing the amount of time one spends in displeasure.

On what a person should do to treat the condition, there are also a number of tips.

These include taking paracetamol to ease pain, keeping the rash clean and dry, wearing loose-fitting clothing, and using a cool compress.

Shingles, says the NHS, “can take up to four weeks…to heal”.

While shingles, a virus that originates from chickenpox, can prove harmless to many, to some it can prove dangerous.

As a result, it is recommended an individual should stay away from pregnant people who have not had chickenpox, those with weakened immune systems, and babies less than one month in age.

A vaccine is also available for those over the age of 70 to reduce their risk of developing shingles.

On vaccines, a new study has found those used to combat COVID-19, are not very effective in those at the other end of the age spectrum.

A study conducted in the United States has found that the Pfizer Covid vaccine is less effective at protecting children aged between five and 11 than it is at protecting adolescents and young adults.

The as yet to be peer-reviewed study conducted by the New York State Department concluded: “In the Omicron era, the effectiveness against cases of [COVID-19] declined rapidly for children, particularly those 5-11 years.”

While these results are concerning with regard to the effectiveness of the vaccine, the study did nevertheless advise: “Vaccination of children 5-11 years was protective against severe disease and is recommended.”

However, in light of the results, they said there was a: “need to study alternative vaccine dosing for children and the continued importance of layered protections, including mask wearing, to prevent infection and transmission”.

This data comes amidst declining case numbers and hospitalisations in the city of New York and the dropping of the mask mandate.

However, it also highlights the impact of Covid on children, a group that is not as vulnerable to serious illness as older age brackets.

A recent report by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) published on Monday found that one percent of primary school age children in the UK were experiencing at least one symptom of long Covid.

The data also showed that children who had had Covid were at greater risk of developing mental health conditions as a result.

Studies on children and Covid come at a time when both the US and UK have lifted more Covid restrictions.

Last Thursday, the UK became the first country in Europe to lift its remaining restrictions.

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