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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

RenterNomad Fri 24-May-13 18:59:16

Bastard, that would be a dreadful incubation period! DD needs an ultrasound, so we can't go around possibly infecting pregnant women! angry

ilovepowerhoop Fri 24-May-13 17:53:00

it was around 2 weeks between dd and ds getting it but it can be up to 3 weeks. The children are always getting in the way of my plans too!

RenterNomad Fri 24-May-13 16:57:21

Thanks, ilovepowerhoop. That sounds a bit longer of an incubation period than normal, though, which would be rather bad news for our planning... if I may be arrogant enough to talk of plans in the context of children... wink confused

ilovepowerhoop Fri 24-May-13 13:50:04

RenterNomad, yes bf toddlers can get it but there is a 10-21 day incubation period between exposure and the spots appearing. I have heard of very young bf babies getting it too so bf doesn't offer full protection.

miffybun73 Fri 24-May-13 10:54:38

No, don't do it.

lottieandmia Fri 24-May-13 10:52:44

QOD - what a terrible thing to have happened sad

lottieandmia Fri 24-May-13 10:50:12

I wouldn't - it's better if they get it older than 12 months really because otherwise they may not get immunity. Mine were 2, 15 months and 15 months when they had it and they have appeared to be immune when exposed to it again.

RenterNomad Fri 24-May-13 10:45:47

Can a breastfed toddler get CP? DD is nearly 18m, and I'm expecting her to have caught it from her big brother, but am just stressing about how long it is taking, as she needs to be free in time for some doctors' appointnents in June...

MeAndMySpoon Thu 23-May-13 23:19:12

I couldn't do it myself, despite knowing that it's 'better' to get it over with younger (not at 7 months though!). I wouldn't be able to cope with the guilt of helping them get it if it were a mild case, let alone one with complications.

At the moment, my two are riding it out and it is bloody horrible. My older child looks like he has a tropical disease, covered in sores and blisters. Some of them are infected. My younger son has one eye swollen shut. I wish to hell I'd vaccinated, even though I was really concerned about exposing them at a more vunerable, older age. What do you do?? confused

Oh, and my GP evidently hasn't heard about the 'no nurofen' guidance with CP - he gave me the hmm eyebrow when we went in for antibiotics for infected spots. Wish I'd remembered that one of the many places I'd read that was the NHS website!

5318008 Tue 21-May-13 20:58:25

yes, the deliberate exposure is the nub. I would say don't.

QOD Tue 21-May-13 20:47:20

It's the deliberate bit, if they're exposed, whatever, what will be will be. Deciding to expose and something goes wrong? You'll never ever ever forgive yourself ... Or your SIL. (My SILs have a very very bitter relationship now)

olivertheoctopus Tue 21-May-13 20:40:20

Deliberately? No.

alicemac83 Tue 21-May-13 20:39:05

I was just about to post a similar question, but i think it may have been answered. Chicken pox seems to be going around in our area, and on sat we saw some friends whose baby has just come out in spots. So the chances are that my 2.5 year old has caught it. That would be fine, but we're going on holiday on 22nd June. We're supposed to see the same family on Sunday and I was considering exposing my dd to it, just in case she didn't catch it on sat to try and make sure she's got it over with by the time we go. Is this a bad idea?

hazeyjane Tue 21-May-13 20:05:47

At our gps you can ask and they can order it in, unless it is recommended by the gp, due to underlying health conditions, in which case it is available on the nhs.

They do not know how long the immunity lasts, but it has been shown to last for 20 years in Japan. Because of this we were recommended to have ds's immunity checked when he is older.

The vaccine is shown to be 95% effective against cp and 100% effective against severe cp, where complications are likely - ie, it is still possible to catch cp, but very mildly.

breatheslowly Tue 21-May-13 17:49:04

For those asking about where to get the vaccine, DD had it at a private travel clinic in or local town. Google chicken pox vaccine and a location and you can probably find a provider.

ProudAS Tue 21-May-13 12:48:08

Don't deliberately expose a 7 month old OP as that age group are particularly likely to not develop immunity and catch it a second time.

With older children there is no right or wrong answer. Pox parties have almost certainly prevented more brain damage and complications than they have caused as a healthy child who gets cp is unlikely to get it later on as an adult or when suffering from other health problems. It's not that simple in real life though when you think of the potential danger you are putting your child in.

There's an article here on getting cp twice

WorrySighWorrySigh Tue 21-May-13 12:25:38

CoteDAzur - DS had chicken pox more than 13 years ago. No MN to ask back then (and an awful lot less internet as well!). No, DS had never had ibuprofen until we gave it to him to bring fever down. We had been giving him calpol with no effect. Where we were and back then you didnt go to the doctor and took advice from friends (hence giving ibuprofen).

We are a lot more aware now than we were back then.

tilbatilba Tue 21-May-13 12:10:26

Get your baby immunised against chickenpox instead. It's potentially a horrible disease and there is no need to expose your baby to it.

MadamNoo Tue 21-May-13 12:02:01

my ds was also hospitalised with cp around 12mo - his eyes were scabby and swollen shut, in utter misery. my oldest ds was immunised as born in US and I never understood why they couldn't be here, as it can be such a horrible illness. didn't know about the possibility of getting later even when immunised.

CoteDAzur Tue 21-May-13 11:56:05

Yes, that was very much the case when I was a child in the '70s, as well - sent to chicken pox parties and nobody batted an eyelid when I caught mumps or measles. Twice, no less.

Encephalitis is a very rare complication of chicken pox. And chicken pox is not only harder as we get older but also riskier. So, I would have to say that I would still encourage chicken pox parties. Just not under the age of 1.

OrlaKiely Tue 21-May-13 11:54:55

HaveAGoAtMe Mon 20-May-13 20:49:35

Gosh it's a good job you're all so experienced and knowledgeable. You must NEVER be/have been unsure about stuff with your first child. I bow down to your superiority.


eh? Surely most of us are here because we struggled first time round and needed advice....and now we're in a position to give that a bad thing? We're only trying to help.

5318008 Tue 21-May-13 11:43:04

To be honest when my kids were wee, chicken pox parties were v much the norm, it was seen as a mild illness, best get it over with, astonishing now, adecade or so later. So I can quite see how family/friends with teens would say to mum with a much younger kid 'yeah, no prob, let him get it, job done'

FossilMum Tue 21-May-13 11:23:23

NO NO NO. He is very young. And as others said, at that age he may not get immunity anyway.

There is a vaccine against chickenpox, by the way. It is used routinely in some countries. It may be introduced here sometime in the next few years. If not, he'll have plenty more chances to get it when he's a little bit older and less vulnerable.

zipzap Tue 21-May-13 11:20:50

There was a post on here from a mum whose young ds wouldn't wake up when she tried to wake him up - turned out he had chicken pox I seem to remember. Although he only had 3 spots, he had some terrible complications, was in hospital very very poorly for weeks and weeks if not months. She posted an update recently and her ds is now out of hospital I think but still very badly affected.

There's another mum on MN who regularly posts on threads like these who tragically lost her child to chicken pox.

It really, really can be a dreadful disease and well done to you for asking the question on here, regardless of having been told what was 'best' by others, and making your own mind up having listened to the info contained in all the posts on here.

Here's hoping that your nephew recovers quickly and that at some point in the future when you ds invariably does get chicken pox, he only has a very mild attack!

gussiegrips Tue 21-May-13 11:13:21

Amandine that's really interesting, thanks. Did not know any of that!

OP, I hope I didn't make you feel like I was being brutal. I'm sorry if I did - and, I hope that when you do get the pox in the house that you have a really easy ride of it.

Mind, I also have two kids who had just that!

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