What is Scabies – Treatment, Home Remedies and Prevention
Scabies affect 300 million people worldwide and 1 million people in the United States. It is caused by a highly contagious mite parasite known as Sarcoptes scabiel. Keyboards, clothing, bedding, towels, toilets or furniture are the hosts of this parasite before it gets rubbed off by a person and infects the skin. This article tries to gain further insight on treatment and prevention of this infection.
Scabies Treatment: Symptoms of this infection are similar to other skin diseases and allergic reactions. Moreover, diagnosis is a difficult task as the burrows of infection are scarce to find. This calls for an examination of the entire skin surface. Diagnosis of Norwegian or crusted scabies is often easy.
The following are the treatment options as there are no vaccines available for scabies:
- Commercially available soaps with the recommended 6 percent sulphur in them can treat scabies. The whole body is to be washed for 4 consecutive days using this soap.
- Hosts of the parasite like clothing, bed linen and blankets should be washed in hot water, dried in high heat and treated with Permethrin.
- 5 percent of Permethrin can be applied on the skin prior to bedtime on doctor’s prescription to cure the infection.
- Eurax and Malathion are are medications which cure the infection by effectively killing the eggs and relieving the itching.
- When the above medications fail, Lindane lotion approved in the United States can be tried to treat the infection.
Home remedies of Treatment:
- 10 percent sulphur ointment along with petroleum jelly can be applied on the rashes as an effective home remedies for scabies.
- It can also be applied on pregnant women and on infants below the age of two months.
- 5 percent of tea tree oil is found to be effective to certain extent in treating scabies.
- A research study has found this oil more effective than the commercial medicines for scabies treatment.
- People who are sensitive permethrin can use neem oil as very effective treatment of scabies.
Prevention of Scabies: There are no proven causative risk factors of this infection. It is for this reason that much emphasis is laid on preventing this infection in first place. Some of these prevention methods are:
- When a person is affected, treatment should be extended to all family members and close contacts simultaneously, even they are asymptomatic.
- Hosts like clothing and bedding in the close proximity of scabies infection should be washed and ironed.
- Disinfecting the bathroom surfaces by mopping, vaccuming the carpets and rugs can reduce the risk of spreading of this infection.