Chicken pox is unusual in babies under 1 year old because most receive antibodies against the virus from their mother. When it does occur in infants, it’s typically mild and clears up in five to 10 days.
Chicken pox appears in the form of an itchy rash of small red bumps that turn into clear blisters before crusting over. Your baby may also be tired, have a low fever, and show a decreased appetite.
Complications from chicken pox are rare in healthy babies but possible. Call the doctor if your infant develops a fever after a few days, if the rash spreads to his eyes, or if he simply seems sicker than you’d expect.
Relieve the baby’s itching with a cool bath made with colloidal oatmeal or baking soda and apply calamine lotion to itchy spots. Prevent her from scratching by keeping her nails short.
Chicken pox is highly contagious, so keep your healthy infant away from others who are ill and prevent the spread of the virus by keeping a sick baby home until she recovers.
A chicken pox vaccine is available but is not recommended for children under the age of 1.