From the School Nurse

Chickenpox (Varicella)

One case of chickenpox has been medically confirmed and reported at Galesville Elementary. The virus spreads in the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It can also be spread by touching or breathing in the virus particles that come from chickenpox blisters.

Signs & Symptoms
Anyone who hasn’t had chickenpox or has not received the chickenpox vaccine can get the disease. Break-through Chickenpox has been reported. Chickenpox most commonly causes an illness that lasts about 5-10 days.

The classic symptom of chickenpox is a rash that turns into itchy, fluid-filled blisters that eventually turn into scabs. The rash may first show up on the face, chest, and back then spread to the rest of the body, including inside the mouth, eyelids, or genital area. It usually takes about one week for all the blisters to become scabs.

Other typical symptoms that may begin to appear 1-2 days before rash include:high fever,  tiredness, loss of appetite and/or headache.

Children usually miss 5 to 6 days of school.

Vaccinated Persons
Some people who have been vaccinated against chickenpox can still get the disease. However, the symptoms are usually milder with fewer blisters and mild or no fever.

Transmission
A person with chickenpox can spread the disease from 1 to 2 days before they get the rash until all their chickenpox blisters have formed scabs.

It takes from 10 to 21 days after exposure to a person with chickenpox or shingles for someone to develop chickenpox.

If a person vaccinated for chickenpox gets the disease, they can still spread it to others.

For most people, getting chickenpox once provides immunity for life. However, for a few people, they can get chickenpox more than once.

It is very important to report all communicable diseases to your child’s school, including pertussis, chickenpox, strep throat and headlice.