How to ease shingles symptoms at home: Running an oat bath ‘can lower the itchiness’

Shingles: Symptoms and effects of virus

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Although oats are better-known as a quick yet nutritious breakfast fix, their benefits offer more than just getting rid of hunger. Instead of eating them, you can have a bath in them to relieve the symptoms of shingles, Ksenia Sobchak, Dermatologist at Loxa Beauty explained to

The expert said: “Oat baths can help improve shingles symptoms in various ways. 

“The active ingredients in oat baths, such as saponins or flavonoids, can help in lowering inflammation.

“Reduced inflammation can significantly lower the itchiness, irritation, and pain from shingles.”

This simple at-home remedy could easily relief many shingles symptoms you’re trying to ease.

According to the Mayo Clinic, shingles describes a viral infection that causes a painful rash.

This painful infection is triggered by the varicella-zoster virus, which also causes chickenpox.

Once you’ve had the childhood disease, this virus lies dormant in your nervous system but might be reactivated later in life.

When it comes to the warning signs of shingles, they usually target only a small part of one side of your body.

The tell-tale signs of the condition include:

  • Pain, burning, numbness or tingling
  • Sensitivity to touch
  • A red rash that begins a few days after the pain
  • Fluid-filled blisters that break open and crust over
  • Itching.

The NHS stresses to get advice from 111 “as soon as possible” if you think you suffer from shingles.

Sobchak explained why exactly oat baths are so potent against the uncomfortable symptoms.


She said: “Oat baths can also increase skin hydration and moisturisation which induces soothing and calming effects, especially on swollen and sensitive skins.

“Frequent oat baths can lower discomfort and cleanse the skin, preventing further skin infections.

“I suggest you shower twice a day in oat water, morning and evening, for at least 15 minutes each session to reap the expected benefits.”

The exact recipe for preparing the bath can often vary, however, adding one cup of oat powder to lukewarm water should do the trick.

However, if a porridge-like bath doesn’t sound appealing to you, the expert recommended other at-home remedies that could help.

 She said this could also work for those “looking to improve” shingles symptoms:

  • Applying skin creams, essential oils, and healing ointments
  • Take frequent cool showers daily as you gently scrub the skin
  • Apply hazel water or creams on the skin
  • Place ice packs or cold compressors on the affected skin part.

The NHS also says it’s important to contact your doctor as you might need medicine and this tends to work the “best” when taken within three days of your symptoms starting.

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