During the epidemic of smallpox, I’ve experience people still interacting with those who have been infected with the disease. Majority of the family members help out one another even though they are suffering from a highly contagious disease. Individuals with smallpox would normally be isolated from those who are not infected. Isolation would normally be recommended, seeing that it can be spread through face-to-face interaction. It can also be spread through tiny drops of saliva from an infected person, when they cough, talk or sneeze. Persons infected have a hard time moving and doing daily activities, such as changing clothes. Family members of the infected person handle all clothing and sheets that they sleep on. Unfortunately, this is causing many to become infected, because one way the disease can be spread is from coming into contact with infected clothes or bed sheets.
As a doctor, it’s hard to see people suffering and not being able to provide them with some sort of medication to help with their illness. Smallpox has no known treatment, but by getting the smallpox vaccine within three to four days of exposure you can possibly reduce the severity of the disease and maybe even prevent it completely. The only thing that I can help with is easing symptoms, such as fevers and body aches. There are also some remedies that I have seen like the red room treatment. With this treatment infected individuals were put in a room painted red and this was said to help with the disease becoming worse. As far as research goes for finding a cure or drug that can help, researches are working toward finding antiviral drugs that could treat the smallpox disease.