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Difference between Small Pox and Chicken Pox

Diseases and disorders are prevalent in humans. That is why in infancy and the following years, children are vaccinated against deadly diseases. Vaccinations are very important. For instance, polio is a fatal disease that may last for a lifetime. If we do not get vaccinated on time, this disease can stick to us and might result in serious complications. Unfortunately, there is no cure for polio and other related diseases. In addition, children get vaccinated for hepatitis A, B, chickenpox, measles, etc. These are deadly diseases that affect several organs of the body like the lungs, face, etc. One such disease is smallpox. Though it is rarely seen today, it was capable of deforming the face of people. Another similar disease is chickenpox which can be avoided if the children are timely vaccinated. So today, we are going to discuss about these two kinds of diseases. They are obviously different from one another. But let us first look at the origin and meaning of these diseases.

Small Pox vs Chicken Pox

Small Pox

Small Pox is defined as an acute contagious disease. Small Pox began with a fever resulting in blisters on the face that was very deadly. This disease is rarely seen now, but when it was active among people, it was fatal. People died because of smallpox because the cure was not available. In 1979, the first vaccine for smallpox came into being, after which it was completely eradicated from the world. Some of the characteristics of smallpox are that it can spread very easily, it can last for some days, and it requires a medical diagnosis. Now, how does smallpox spread? Well, this disease can spread through several ways like saliva, skin-to-skin contact, touching a contaminated surface, using unclean needles to get blood, etc. Smallpox is caused by an infection with the variola virus. When a person suffers from smallpox, a severe rash appears on the body that can leave scars. High fever, body ache, headache is followed by these blisters on the body. According to the stats, over 30% of people died due to smallpox. The people who survived this fatal disease further suffered blindness. In Mexico, over ten million people died due to smallpox. Smallpox was considered to be an epidemic virus that had been spread across the nation. As we know, this epidemic ended in 1980, so there was no smallpox seen after that.

Chicken Pox

Chickenpox is somewhat like smallpox in which the body suffers from blisters and rashes on the skin. This disease is contagious, and people who are not vaccinated can suffer from this. Chickenpox is still seen in people because they are not vaccinated. This disease is self-treatable and can spread easily by saliva, touching a contaminated surface, from mother to the baby during pregnancy, etc. Chickenpox can be life-threatening. Babies, adults, people with weak immune systems, and pregnant women have a higher risk of chickenpox. Now, what happens when you are suffering from chickenpox? Well, chickenpox can lead to rashes on the skin, which can be itchy. The blisters on the skin are fluid-filled that transform into scabs. The rashes first appear in the back, face, and chest, eventually spreading over the entire body. It is interesting to note that the chickenpox vaccine first came in the year 1995. Chickenpox is a short-lived disorder, i.e., it may take days or one to two weeks to recover from chickenpox. Now, there are some differences between smallpox and chickenpox. So, let us have a look at them.

1. Smallpox is defined as a disease that begins with fever resulting in blisters on the skin. On the other hand, chickenpox is a contagious disease that results in rashes on the skin.
2. Smallpox is a rare disease that ended in the year 1980. Chickenpox is still seen in various parts of the world. The vaccine for chickenpox first came in the year 1995.
3. The causative agent of smallpox is the variola virus. The causative agent of chickenpox is the varicella-zoster virus.
4. The incubation period of smallpox is 7-17 days. The incubation period of chickenpox is 14-21 days.
5. Smallpox is a fatal disease than chickenpox. Chickenpox is less threatening as compared to smallpox.
6. The blisters first appear in the throat, mouth, and face. The blisters first appear on the face, chest, and back.
7. The initial symptoms of smallpox are seen after 2-3 days of serious illness. The initial symptoms of chickenpox are seen after two days of mild illness.
8. The scabs in smallpox can be infectious. The scabs in chickenpox are not infectious.
9. The development of rashes leads to fever. Fever occurs due to the collapse of vesicles.

So, these are some of the contrasting points between smallpox and chickenpox. Nevertheless, smallpox and chickenpox are somewhat similar diseases. The major difference between them is that chickenpox is less life-threatening, unlike smallpox. Thus, it is necessary to get vaccinated against chickenpox (since smallpox has been eradicated) as it can prove to be fatal.

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