While chicken pox and shingles are caused by the same virus, chickenpox often strikes in childhood and shingles in adulthood. They both can cause itching, but chickenpox causes intense itching and the blisters can affect the entire body whereas shingles typically affects only one area. Shingles is also more painful.
- Age: Most commonly occurs after age 50
- Previous infection with chickenpox
- Weakened immune system caused by stress or illness (HIV, diabetes)