Shingles is a painful condition caused by a reactivation of the dormant chickenpox virus. The virus causes blisters to spread throughout the body, resulting in burning, aching pains. (1) Conventional treatment for shingles includes medications to help reduce pain. Shingles treatment may also include natural home remedies for shingles to help boost immunity, reduce pain and fight the virus.

Shingles Risk Factors

  • Being over the age of 60
  • Having a history of a disease that affects the immune system
  • Taking drugs that affect the immune system
  • Having a family history of shingles

Shingles Symptoms

  • A painful rash that appears as blisters spread throughout the body (2)
  • A stripe of blisters concentrated in one area
  • Tingling sensations
  • Scabs and redness
  • Ulcers or small blisters that burn
  • Pain on parts of the skin that last even once the rash clears up
  • Itching
  • Fatigue, pains and aches
  • Changes in weight or appetite
  • Vision-related problems when blisters appear near the eyes

Home Remedies for Shingles

1. Foods to Boost Immunity

Treatment for shingles includes immune-boosting foods to help fight off the virus. Foods high in B Vitamins can help heal the nervous system while foods rich in Vitamin C can give the immune system a boost. Be sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. Garlic, onions and green leafy vegetables also help support the immune system. Avoid foods that cause inflammation and can slow the healing process, including sugar, caffeine and fried foods.

Shingles treatment food

2. Shingles Supplements

Supplements that can be used for shingles treatment include:

  • Vitamin C: Take 1,000 mg 3-4 times a day to help boot the immune system
  • Echinacea: Take 500 mg 3 times a day to help the body fight off infection
  • Oregano oil: Take 500 mg 3 times a day as an antiviral treatment for singles (3)
  • Vitamin B12: Take 1,000-5,000 mcg each day to promote faster recovery
  • Zinc: Take 50 mg each day to support the immune system

3. Honey

Home remedies for shingles include honey. A 2012 study showed that manuka honey and clover honey both showed strong antiviral activity against the virus that causes shingles. To use honey as a shingles treatment, apply it directly to problem areas several times per day. (4)

Shingles treatment honey

4. Essential Oils

Geranium essential oil can be used as a natural shingles treatment. Studies have shown that geranium oil can help reduce pain caused by a shingles outbreak. Other essential oils that can be used for shingles treatment include tea tree, lemongrass, lavender, peppermint and black cumin seed oil. Mix 2 drops of an essential oil with 1/4 teaspoon of coconut oil and rub it onto the affected areas. (5)

5. Cool Compresses

Home remedies for shingles include cool compresses. Cool, wet compresses can help relieve shingles pain and itchy. Use a clean cloth and cool water. Warm or hot water can further irritate the skin and make itching worse.

Shingles treatment cold compress

6. Collodial Oatmeal Baths

Collodial oatmeal baths can help reduce pain caused by shingles. Fill the tub with cool water and infuse the water with collodial oatmeal. The oatmeal will help soothe and moisturize dry, itchy skin to provide pain relief. (6)

7. Stress Reduction

Lowering your stress levels is an important part of natural treatment for shingles. Reducing stress boosts your overall health by improving your immune system function. A strong and healthy immune system is less susceptible to viruses and other illnesses.

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