How do you treat the measles?

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These messages are for mutual support and information sharing only. Always consult your doctor before trying anything you read here.

There is no prescription medication to treat measles. The virus and symptoms typically disappear within two to three weeks. However, the doctor may recommend:

  • acetaminophen to relieve fever and muscle aches
  • rest to help boost your immune system
  • plenty of fluids (six to eight glasses of water a day)
  • humidifier to ease a cough and sore throat
  • vitamin A supplements

There's no specific treatment for an established measles infection. If you or your child has measles, keep in touch with your doctor as you monitor the progress of the disease and watch for complications. Also try these comfort measures:

  • Take it easy. Get rest and avoid busy activities.
  • Sip something. Drink plenty of water, fruit juice and herbal tea to replace fluids lost by fever and sweating.
  • Seek respiratory relief. Use a humidifier to relieve a cough and sore throat.
  • Rest your eyes. If you or your child finds bright light bothersome, as do many people with measles, keep the lights low or wear sunglasses. Also avoid reading or watching television if light from a reading lamp or from the television is bothersome.
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