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Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

Should I expose my 7 month of DS to chickenpox

(89 Posts)
Gumgardener321 Mon 20-May-13 19:04:08

My nephew has chickenpox and wondering if I should expose my DS to him in the hope of him catching them. I've heard it's best for children to have chicken pox early but this early?
Any advice will be appreciated

RonaldMcDonald Mon 20-May-13 21:05:47

I see where you're coming from.
I think they are supposed to get CP at a really inopportune moment though <about to get on a flight etc> so you may be robbing us of future gems....
All of mine had it sub 2 and they seemed to get it in differing orders of severity.
I think that there are really low risks associated with kids with a healthy immune system. Also you could just as easily pick it up from being beside someone on a bus.

HerrenaLovesStarTrek Mon 20-May-13 21:07:57

I didn't know that about childhood shingles. Oh good confused

I had heard that they don't develop 'proper' immunity if they get it when tiny but wasn't sure how much credence to give that statement since I don't always believe all the crap things you hear at baby groups. One of these days I will research it properly! It may well be verifiable.

Haveago - your statement makes you sound sarcastic and a bit silly. We are giving our opinions, based on our experience. I don't think anyone has claimed to be the Childhood Disease Guru although I would quite like the post of Chief Sceptic if it's going and if I get a special hat to go with it

NorthernLurker Mon 20-May-13 21:08:39

No it wasn't like that. You're over-reacting. Did you suggest she bring the baby round?

I hope your son is recovering. If he has spots in the mouth then ice lollies in abundance can cheer him up considerably on two grounds grin. If you can get an immune adult to come and look after him so you can get out for a bit it will do you good too. I nearly went crazy when my older two had CP one after another......

HerrenaLovesStarTrek Mon 20-May-13 21:09:49

Ah, cross-posted with you*Haveago*. I do think your initial statement reads as snippy but thank you for explaining further - I now get your point!

WorrySighWorrySigh Mon 20-May-13 21:10:45

I wouldnt as DS had chicken pox at less than a year old and was very poorly. We also discovered that he is allergic to ibuprofen.

ilovepowerhoop Mon 20-May-13 21:15:51 - says children are thought to be at increased risk for developing shingles if they had chicken pox before they were 12 months old or if their mother had chicken pox in her third trimester of pregnancy

CoteDAzur Mon 20-May-13 21:17:41

Don't do it because he is too young to form lifelong immunity to it.

Do it in a year or two.

Fwiw, DS got CP when he was 8 months old. He was covered in it but it was otherwise fine. He suffered much less than his older sister who got it from him. My only regret is that he will probably get it again, in the middle of another holiday, in all likelihood.

HerrenaLovesStarTrek Mon 20-May-13 21:22:36

Thanks for that ilovepowerhoop - interesting.

My take-home message is as follows:

1) If you have chicken pox (CP) then you are 10-15% more likely to develop shingles at some point later in life.
2) If you have CP before the age of 1 then you are at increased risk of developing shingles.
3) If you get shingles as a child, it is likely to be milder than in an adult and you have a lower likelihood of developing post-herpetic neuralgia.

So my DS2 (e.g) is more likely to get shingles anyway because he had CP very young (at 6mo). I'm now hoping that he gets shingles at a young age because it sounds way better to have it as a child!

Not sure how pertinent all that is for you op (and haveago) but I feel more informed grin

CoteDAzur Mon 20-May-13 21:25:52

WorrySigh - Did you give your DS ibuprofen when he had CP? That reaction doesn't mean your DS is allergic to ibuprofen.

ilovepowerhoop Mon 20-May-13 21:29:04

bear in mind you can shingles more than once too - one poor wee soul in my dd's class (age 9) has had shingles around 7 times! (must have a poor immune system)

p.s. you can only get shingles if you have had chicken pox before so I think the link is saying that out of everyone who gets chicken pox only 10-15% of them will go on to get shingles.

ilovepowerhoop Mon 20-May-13 21:30:09

you arent supposed to give ibuprofen for chicken pox as it can lead to skin complications

HerrenaLovesStarTrek Mon 20-May-13 21:36:06

Oh god, I feel like I'm playing CP bingo for bad mothers.

Cavalier about the risk of DCs catching it? Tick.
Administered ibuprofen/calpol/ anything the pharmacist could sell me? Tick.
Sneakily picked at the final few scabs in order to 'encourage' them to go? Tick.

DS2 still has some little scars on his belly and they're not even the ones I picked at blush

Oh and 7 times ilovepowerhoop ?!? That poor child!

ilovepowerhoop Mon 20-May-13 21:50:26

I only found out about the ibuprofen thing a couple of weeks ago when someone mentioned it on a thread on here and I checked it out in the nhs website. I probably gave it to dd (9) and ds (6) when they had chicken pox at age 3years and 6 months respectively.

ll31 Mon 20-May-13 22:14:00

Stupid idea,why would you want your baby to be sick ?

MrsMcEnroe Mon 20-May-13 22:18:13


My DD caught chickenpox (from my DS) when she was 8 months old. It was horrific. Constant screaming for days, she was in so much distress.

Despite being so covered in spots, and so inflamed, both externally and internally shock that up you couldn't see ANY skin at all, she apparently didn't have it severely enough to provide immunity. So when she was 3 yo she came down with it again (albeit far less severely).

(She had spots inside her vagina, in her mouth, in her eyes .... )

Chickenpox is a bugger IME and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy!

QOD Mon 20-May-13 22:27:29


I have to bring this out all the time

4 yr old neice with pox

My 2 SILs think its a great idea to get her and her 4 yr and 2.2 yr old cousins so they all got it over with.
I told the they were stupid

Dn aged 2.2 caught it, it attacked her brain, she's now 22 and very disabled, can hardly walk, find stairs hard and dangerous and can't quite remeber how to tell the time still

The GUILT my SILs suffer tore the family apart and though its back together, its more Velcro than superglue

CoteDAzur Mon 20-May-13 22:33:20

" she apparently didn't have it severely enough to provide immunity"

It's not that it wasn't severe enough.

She was too young to form lifelong immunity.

Pyrrah Mon 20-May-13 22:49:42

After hearing stories about some of my father's young patients who were hospitalised, and after seeing the severe facial scarring my niece was left with after a bad case of CP, I had DD vaccinated the same day that she had the MMR.

She has been exposed multiple times since (she's now 4) and hasn't caught it. She is also now protected against shingles and importantly is not going to pass it on to my very immune-compromised DH.

The vaccine is included in the version of MMR (MMRV) that they use in the USA, NZ and Australia. In the UK it's not available on the NHS but is available privately - 2 shots, 3 years apart, cost £60 each.

breatheslowly Mon 20-May-13 23:03:12

I'd consider vaccination instead, if you can afford it. DD has been vaccinated and the £120 it cost was well worth her not getting CP.

Figgygal Mon 20-May-13 23:05:40

My DS cane down with it today at 17mo he has no idea what is going in its awful!!

Do not encourage it

WorrySighWorrySigh Mon 20-May-13 23:11:12

CoteDAzur - no, DS had an allergic reaction (confirmed by GP). DH is also allergic to ibuprofen so probably not surprising. Both get highly inflamed skin if in contact with ibuprofen.

Chicken pox didnt cause the reaction just that we wouldnt have given DS ibuprofen if he hadnt had such a high fever from the chicken pox.

twofalls Mon 20-May-13 23:16:31

No it's bloody horrible. And QOD, I think of you whenever I see one of these threads. hmm

QOD Mon 20-May-13 23:48:20

Let's not forget little clutchingpearls.

Op its the intentional exposure that's the issue. The guilt both sils have

sitzonhandz Mon 20-May-13 23:58:26

Pyrrah, two out of three of mine have been vacc against chicken pox. All three of them subsequently caught it grin

That said, the two vacc kids had milder symptoms. They still got chicken pox. grin

gussiegrips Tue 21-May-13 00:04:51

yep, another one with a kid proper poorly in hospital after CP, aged 3.

Not the awful stuff of encephalitis - but necrotising spots. Deep wounds with black, dead tissue at the root of them. Risk is septacaemia. Now left with ghastly scars (thankfully, not on her face) and she was hospitalised with febrile convulsions and dehydration.

She looked like something biblical - 16 spots on one eyelid. No joke, no exaggeration - one eyelid.

She's fine now, but, I'd support inoculation against CP. Yep, it can be as mild as her brothers' experiences were - but, she was a bloody mess. Literally.

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