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Oatmeal Bath

An oatmeal bath is the number 1 home remedy for shingles. Oats may be used in an oatmeal bath to sooths the itching, burning and pain caused by many other skin conditions.

These are the same kind of oats that many people eat for breakfast, only prepared a little different. It is simple to do and this remedy has the advantage that you can purchase the main ingredient at any local grocery store.

An oatmeal bath is a safe, natural and effective way to soothe the itching, burning and pain caused by Shingles. By dissolving colloidal oatmeal - which is rolled oats that have been milled into a fine powder - into a bathtub full of lukewarm water, you will experience relief from itching and burning for several hours.


What you will need:

  • The bath area needs to have a way to completely rinse off the body after taking the bath. This is important to prevent itching that could result from oatmeal drying on the skin.
  • You'll need a blender, food processor or coffee grinder to prepare the oatmeal.
  • The oatmeal can be quick oats, slow cooking oats, or instant oatmeal (unflavored) - all work equally as well.
  • A one cup measure
  • A tablespoon
  • A thick, absorbent towel

STEP 1: Put one cup of oats into your blender and use the highest setting to process the oats until you have a very fine, consistent powder. How do you know when the oats are processed enough? Use a tablespoon of the powder and stir it into a glass of warm water. The powdered oats should give the water a milky look and a silky feel.

STEP 2: Dissolve your powdered oatmeal into lukewarm bath water. Take the time to ensure that the oatmeal is broken up completely and no clumps remain. The bath water should appear evenly milky before you get into the tub.

CAUTIOM: This mixture will cause wet surfaces to be slippery so be careful getting in and out of the tub.

STEP 3: Soak in the tub for at least 15 minutes. For maximum benefits, submerge as much of your body as possible underneath the surface of the water. However, avoid getting the water in your eyes, since the oatmeal will make it sting.

STEP 4: Remain in the tub while it drains and them rinse your entire body of all oatmeal residue before exiting. Any leftover oatmeal may dry out your skin and increase itching. Remind yourself about slippery surfaces before exiting the tub.

STEP 5: Use the thick, absorbent towel to dry your body but do so carefully by dabbing away the water. You want to avoid rubbing the skin with the towel, which can irritate shingle sores and may cause bleeding and scarring.

STEP 6: Right after you finishing drying, apply your favorite lotion to the skin before getting dressed. By using a lotion in combination with an oatmeal bath, you can reduce the pain and itching caused by shingles and speed up the recovery.

Optional: You may want to use this bathing procedure at least 2-3 times per day to effectively relieve the pain and itching caused by Shingles.

Optional: You can also use an ice pack on the blisters after the bath for 20 minutes to relieve pain and to numb the rash. Remember to press with the ice pack and not rub with it.

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This consumer advocate website is protected by copyright 2011 Askdocweb, Inc. All Rights Reserved. This is a layman's report on taking an oatmeal bath and is not intended to replace discussions with a health care provider. Do not use the information on this forum as a substitute for your doctor's advice. Always consult your doctor before taking any drug and follow your doctor's directions. Source material: Food and Drug Administration, Medline, Physician's Desk Reference, and the largest community of people in the world, those who are concerned about side effects and healthcare.
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