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Can Your Senior Get Shingles from Stress?

​So many different conditions are made worse with the addition of negative stress. is one of those conditions. In fact, stress may well make your senior more likely to experience an outbreak of shingles, which can be incredibly painful and uncomfortable for her. Worse, it can take months to recover from an outbreak of shingles.

The Biggest Risk Factor Is Chickenpox

One of the biggest risk factors can be whether or not your senior has ever had chickenpox. If she had chickenpox as a child, the virus is in her body already and may develop into shingles at any time. If she hasn’t, she may want to be more vigilant about avoiding anyone who has been exposed recently to chickenpox and make sure that she vaccinates against chickenpox.

Age Is Also a Contributing Factor

Anybody can develop shingles at any time. It doesn’t discriminate. Age is a factor, though, and your elderly family member is far more likely to develop shingles as she ages than she is when she’s younger. There are a lot of reasons for that. One of those reasons involves stress and what it does to your senior’s immune system.

Stress Isn’t Always Your Friend

There are and bad stressors. The good stressors stimulate your senior’s brain and alert her to danger that she can avoid. Bad stressors cause problems like digestive problems, trouble sleeping, and immunosuppression. When all of that is going on, your senior is less likely to be able to fight off certain ailments. That’s why when she’s run down, she’s more likely to catch a cold. But sometimes even good stress can be too much and can cause health problems for your senior.

Stress and Shingles

What all of this means is that being stressed, in primarily the bad ways, can significantly increase your senior’s risk of developing shingles. Your senior may even find that she’s having difficulty with other health issues that have been under control. Stress can be a factor there, too. Talk with her doctor about what she’s experiencing and what you can do to help her.

As your senior’s caregiver, you spend a lot of time helping her to solve problems. One problem you may want to work on together is reducing your senior’s stress levels as much as possible. There may be a variety of ways you go about accomplishing that task once you get started.

If you or an aging loved one is considering caregivers in Elizabeth, CO, please contact the caring staff at SYNERGY HomeCare today at 303-953-9924.