Shingles a threat to the brain and heart

Shingles a threat to the brain and heart

A shingles outbreak is often very painful, as a recent British study indicates, and it can also be downright deadly. It doubles the risk of having a stroke with the probability of that staying 50 percent higher for three months. Likewise, it almost doubles the risk of heart attack in the week following the appearance of the first blisters on the skin. How can shingles have such devastating effects?

It turns out that a shingles outbreak increases the degree of inflammation throughout the body and within the arteries, this can lead to the development of blood clots that limit or prevent blood flow to the heart or brain. Shingles, which in addition to being painful causes us a lot of stress, can cause our blood pressure to rise. It can also cause damage to the blood vessels in the brain such as bulges or cracks.

If you had chickenpox in the past, the shingles virus can show up again in the future.

This virus hides in the nerves located at the base of the spine to re-emerge decades later in the form of a rash.

It usually affects the sides of the abdomen, shoulders, back, and one side of the head. One in three adults, half of those 60 and older, will experience a shingles outbreak.

Until recently, the biggest concern was the pain this causes in about 40 percent of those with shingles, pain that can last for weeks, months, and even years.

Here are the steps you can take to improve your protection:

You should know when to get the shingles vaccine. Most health insurance plans cover the cost of this vaccine for people age 60 and older.

The vaccine reduces the risk of developing the painful rash by 48 percent. And if a flare does occur, it decreases by 59 percent the chance that you’ll experience the nerve pain that follows the rash, known as post-herpetic neuralgia.

Protection against chickenpox increases by 70 percent if you get vaccinated between the ages of 50 and 59, something to discuss with your doctor especially if you’ve already experienced a bout of shingles.

The effect of the vaccine diminishes in about five years. Then you should talk to your doctor to indicate the next step to follow. In the future, a booster vaccine may be beneficial to reinvigorate protection.

Have you ever had chickenpox? get vaccinated If you have never had this disease, which usually affects during childhood, and have never been vaccinated, tell your doctor. At any age, the chickenpox vaccine protects against the causative agent of the zoster virus.

Eat well to support your immune system. A shingles outbreak is more likely when your immune system is not strong.

A study from the London School of Health and Tropical Medicine in Great Britain indicates that people who eat five servings of vegetables every day are 70 percent less likely to have a shingles outbreak than those who only eat one. ration per day Three daily servings of fruit cut the risk by 50 percent.

Do not limit yourself to the use of multivitamins, although these greatly reduce the risk of cancer.

Eat fresh products. Based on the study findings, no specific nutrient appears to protect against a shingles outbreak. Researchers suspect that it is the wide variety of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients that protects against a shingles outbreak, especially for people older than 60 years.

Maintaining a healthy diet is important for many reasons, but this alone cannot replace the protection that the shingles vaccine gives you.

Learn to relax deeply. Tai chi is a great exercise for that, as it involves a series of movements that strengthen the body while relaxing the mind and nervous system.

A study from the University of California, Los Angeles, involving 112 adults aged 59 to 82, found this type of exercise markedly strengthened immunity against shingles. It is not a substitute for the vaccine, but it can contribute to protection. Other adults who got the shingles vaccine and practiced tai chi three times a week for four months had 40 percent more antibodies than those who just got vaccinated.

Dr. Mehmet Oz is the host of The Dr. Oz Show and Dr. Mike Roizen is Chief of Wellness and President of the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute.