Homeopathic remedies are available for various conditions, including shingles. However, there is no scientific evidence to verify their effectivness.

Homeopathy is a type of alternative treatment. It involves treating health conditions using diluted doses of substances that would ordinarily cause those conditions.

Shingles, also known as herpes zoster, is a complication that can affect people who have previously had chickenpox (varicella). It can occur years after a person has chickenpox, often in adulthood and older adulthood. It happens when the varicella-zoster virus, which is responsible for chickenpox, reactivates and causes symptoms in the nervous system.

A vaccine is available to protect people from shingles. Some people may opt for homeopathic immunizations or remedies.

However, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) warns that there is no evidence that homeopathic immunizations or remedies can prevent or treat any disease.

In addition, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate the safety and effectiveness of homeopathic remedies for any illness. As a result, a person may not know what they are getting when they buy a homeopathic product.

Shingles can be extremely painful. It is not life threatening, but prompt medical treatment can help reduce the risk of long lasting pain. Using homeopathic remedies in place of standard medical treatment may prolong symptoms.

This article outlines the existing research on the safety and effectiveness of homeopathic remedies and lists some homeopathic remedies that proponents of homeopathy may suggest for shingles. We also list some proven treatments for shingles and offer advice on when to see a doctor.

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Homeopathy is based on two ideas, according to the NCCIH.

One is that substances that produce similar reactions to a disease in healthy people can cure that disease.

The other is that the dose must be as small as possible. This means some products are so diluted that they contain no molecules of the original substance.

The products come from plant, mineral, and animal sources.

A homeopathic doctor will create a tailored remedy for an individual. Before prescribing treatment, they will ask questions about the individual, their symptoms, their lifestyle, and more. They will base their prescription on the person’s answers to these questions. As a result, two people with the same condition may receive different remedies.

Some doctors may offer homeopathic immunizations, but the NCCIH warns that there is no evidence to suggest these immunizations can protect people from any disease.

Below are some solutions and ingredients found in homeopathic remedies that proponents of homeopathy may suggest for the treatment of shingles:

  • mezereum
  • Apis mellifica
  • Arsenicum album
  • Rhus toxicodendron
  • Iris versicolor
  • Ranunculus bulbosa

Learn more about homeopathy here.

Below are some proven treatments for shingles.


The medications below can help in the treatment of shingles.

Antiviral medications

Doctors may prescribe antiviral medications to prevent the virus from multiplying. These drugs help:

  • shorten the duration of shingles
  • reduce symptom severity
  • reduce the risk of complications, such as long lasting pain

Examples of antiviral drugs a doctor may prescribe for shingles include:

The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends starting shingles treatment within 72 hours of developing a shingles rash. Treatment may be less effective if a person starts it after this time.


According to the U.K. National Health Service (NHS), a doctor may prescribe steroid eye drops to help treat shingles in the eye. These help reduce inflammation inside the eye.

Pain medication

People may also take over-the-counter (OTC) or prescription pain medication to ease shingles pain.

What to know about treatments for shingles.

Home remedies

The AAD recommends the following home remedies for shingles:

  • washing the rash with a fragrance-free cleanser
  • applying a thin layer of petroleum jelly to the rash
  • covering the rash with a sterile nonstick bandage
  • applying a damp washcloth to the affected area for 5–10 minutes several times per day
  • soaking in a bath of cool water mixed with oatmeal
  • applying calamine lotion to scabs to reduce itching
  • wearing loose-fitting cotton or linen clothing

What are some natural and home remedies for shingles?


A person should consider getting vaccinated to prevent shingles from developing again after their rash clears up.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) state that people aged 50 years and older can receive 2 doses of the shingles vaccine Shingrix 2–6 months apart. People with a weak immune system can receive the second dose just 1–2 months after the first.

Learn more about the shingles vaccine here.

Shingles is a rash that occurs as a complication of chickenpox. Chickenpox results from the varicella-zoster virus. Most people recover from chickenpox in 7–10 days, but the virus remains in their body.

Later in life, the virus can reactivate as herpes zoster, or shingles. This can happen if a person’s immunity weakens as a result of older age, stress, medication use, or other factors.

Symptoms of shingles often occur as follows:

  • There is pain, itching, or tingling on one side of the face or body.
  • Between 1 and 5 days later, a painful rash of blisters appears on the affected area.
  • The blisters typically scab over in 7–10 days.
  • Symptoms clear up in 2–4 weeks, but a painful condition known as postherpetic neuralgia may persist.

A person may also experience other symptoms, such as:

People who develop postherpetic neuralgia may experience:

  • pain
  • tingling
  • shock-like sensations
  • dysesthesias, which includes skin sensations such as prickling, burning, and crawling

How does shingles affect the face?

The National Institute on Aging states that shingles can last up to 5 weeks.

The CDC suggests that shingles blisters will scab over in 7–10 days and disappear completely after 2–4 weeks.

People who develop postherpetic neuralgia may have flares of pain that last more than 4 weeks. In some cases, they can last 12 months or longer.

Some companies sell homeopathic remedies for a variety of ailments, marketing them as natural and safe alternatives to OTC and prescription medications.

However, the FDA states that it does not review any homeopathic products for safety or efficacy in diagnosing, treating, or preventing disease.

Moreover, the FDA has encountered the following safety concerns when testing homeopathic products:

  • products containing high levels of active ingredients that could cause significant harm
  • products that had improper manufacturing procedures, which led to improper dilutions or contamination
  • products marketed to treat serious diseases despite a lack of evidence for their effectiveness and despite the existence of scientifically proven treatments

An older research review from 2012 notes that homeopathic remedies can cause adverse effects ranging from mild to severe. The most common are allergic reactions and intoxication.

In a 2017 meta-analysis of three clinical trials comparing homeopathy with placebo treatment, researchers tested the hypothesis that the effects of homeopathic treatment were indistinguishable from those of placebo. Contrary to the hypothesis, the study found a small, statistically significant effect of homeopathy.

However, the authors note that the quality of evidence was low and potentially biased and that higher quality randomized controlled trials are necessary to determine the effectiveness of homeopathy for specific symptoms and conditions.

According to the NCCIH, there is little evidence to support the use of homeopathy for any condition, and the active ingredients in homeopathic products could lead to adverse effects and interactions with other drugs.

If people develop a rash that they suspect is due to shingles, they should consult a doctor within 3 days.

A doctor can provide antiviral medications that can help relieve symptoms, speed up recovery, and prevent complications. However, these medications are effective only if a person takes them within 3 days of the initial symptoms.

Individuals who may be interested in using a homeopathic remedy for any condition should consider seeking medical advice to evaluate a product’s safety before trying it.

Homeopathic products contain diluted amounts of substances that would ordinarily cause the condition they claim to treat. Proponents of homeopathy may recommend homeopathic remedies for the treatment of various conditions, including shingles.

However, the FDA does not regulate the safety or effectiveness of homeopathic products. Further, some scientific evidence suggests that homeopathic products can cause mild to severe adverse effects, including allergic reactions and intoxication.

People who develop symptoms of shingles should contact a doctor right away. Prompt treatment with antiviral medications can shorten the duration of symptoms, ease symptom severity, and reduce the risk of long-term pain.