Chicken Pox Age Groups
No Age Barriers for Chicken Pox
Chicken pox is most likely to infect children. In preschool and in kindergarten is when the highest
incidents of chicken pox infections occur. This is when children are between 3-6 years old. Chicken
pox can affect all age groups, including adults.
Chicken pox is also known as Varicella, which is
a highly contagious infection that is caused by the varicella-zoster virus. Many feel that
immunizations are worth the risks to help prevent the spread of it, while others
feel children will develop immunity to chicken pox naturally and even that the virus has
less risks than the immunization.
All Age Groups Infected With Chicken Pox
No matter what the age group, coughing, sneezing, and direct contact spreads the chicken pox virus.
A person who has been infected with this virus is contagious from a couple days before
symptoms begin until the blisters have scabbed over.
If there are other health issues that put a
person at risk of complication, a healthcare professional should be contacted.
- In Babies -
Babies usually get infected with chicken pox from a sibling or at daycare. Babies who have chicken
pox should be monitored carefully. A baby is unable to communicate exactly how they feel, so it
will be the parentsí responsibility to determine if the baby should be taken to a doctor or ER.
Aspirin should never be given to infants to help them be more comfortable because of the risk of
Reye syndrome. Contact a healthcare professional for suggestions on how to keep a baby comfortable.
Medicine for itching should not be put on hands, because they end up in the babyís mouth.
- In Teens -
Teens who get infected with chicken pox usually are infected at school or from a sibling. Teens
can communicate how they feel and can participate in their own care like putting lotion on the box to
relieve itching. Aspirin should never be given to Teens to relieve discomfort or to treat a fever
because of the risk of Reye syndrome.
- In Adults -
Adult men and women who havenít had chicken pox may get chicken pox from an infected child in their
home or from a child that they care for. Adults who have chicken pox are more likely to have
complications and be hospitalized than children who have chicken pox. If complications occur
or there are other health issues, adults with chicken pox should see a health care professional.
Women who are pregnant should avoid being infected with chicken pox and if they are exposed to
the virus, they should contact a healthcare professional.
Once someone is infected with chicken pox, they may develop shingles as an adult. Shingles is also
known as herpes zoster or zona. Shingle symptoms occur years or decades after a chicken pox infection.
The chance of an outbreak of shingles increases after age 65.
Chicken pox normally will run its course uneventfully by treating the fever, discomfort, and itching.
The chicken pox infection will be about finished about 10 days after exposure except for the healing
of the scabs.