Chickenpox is a highly contagious disease caused by the varicella-zoster virus (VZV). In most cases, this condition isn’t very serious. But if you have a weakened immune system, it may be. As a rule, once you recover from chickenpox, you will become immune to future infections. But can you get chickenpox more than once?
The answer is yes, although it is very rare for chickenpox to recur. In this article, we’ll take a look at the factors that could make you more susceptible to chickenpox infections.
How Can You Get Chickenpox More Than Once?
There are two ways how you can get chickenpox more than once in your life.
Firstly, you may develop a shingles outbreak later in life. VZV, the same virus that causes chickenpox, is also responsible for this condition. Once you contract the virus, it will stay in your system for good. In most cases, it will remain dormant in your body. But it may sometimes reactivate, which could result in a shingles outbreak.
Years after they’ve experienced chickenpox, some people might develop the symptoms once again. This can happen due to one or more of the following factors:
- You have a weak immune system or an immunodeficiency disorder.
- You were six months old or younger the first time you had chickenpox.
- You only had very mild symptoms when you first had chickenpox.
What You Can Do
The best way to prevent catching the VZV virus is to receive two doses of the chickenpox vaccine. That way, even if you develop the disease, you’ll only experience mild symptoms.
If you believe you’re developing a second case of chickenpox, you should visit your doctor. This is very important as several other conditions can mimic the symptoms of chickenpox. Only your doctor can determine the exact cause and recommend the right treatment.