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Symptoms of human scabies and how to treat it

Human scabies is a skin disease, also called scabies, which is caused by the sarcoptes scabiei mite, which infects the skin and causes symptoms such as intense itching and redness.

This disease is easily transmitted among people of the same family through the sharing of clothing, sheets or towels, for example, and it is therefore recommended to avoid direct contact with the infected person's skin or at least until the end of the treatment. Although it is also frequent in animals, scabies can't be caught from a dog, because the parasites are different.

This disease is cured through dermatologist-prescribed treatment, which usually includes the use of remedies for scabies like permethrin or benzoyl, for example.

Symptoms of human scabies and how to treat it

Main symptoms

The main symptom of human scabies is intense itching that worsens at night. If you think you have this disease, choose from the symptoms below the ones you are experiencing:

  1. 1. Itchy skin that gets worse at night.
    Yes
    No
  2. 2. Small blisters on the skin, especially in the folds
    Yes
    No
  3. 3. Red plaques on the skin
    Yes
    No
  4. 4. Lines near bubbles that look like paths or tunnels
    Yes
    No
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The first time you get infected with the scabies mite, symptoms can take up to 2 months to appear, and in later cases symptoms appear faster, appearing in less than 4 days.

While you don't have symptoms, the disease can be transmitted from person to person. So when a case comes up in the family it is important to test everyone who has been in contact with the infected person to make the diagnosis and start treatment if necessary.

Scabies is contagious

Human scabies is a fairly contagious disease that can easily pass between people through direct contact with the skin. This is because the female Sarcoptes scabiei mite lives and deposits its eggs in the most superficial layer of the skin, facilitating its transmission.

In addition, the disease can be transmitted even if it is not causing symptoms yet, which decreases the cautions people follow to avoid its contagion. Even if there are no suspicions of scabies, it is important to adopt certain cautions that prevent the transmission of such diseases, such as:

  • Do not share bath towels;
  • Avoid sharing unwashed clothing;
  • Wash the skin at least once a day;
  • Avoid direct contact with people who live in places with poor hygiene.

In situations of clothes that can not be washed frequently, a good option is to place them inside a closed plastic bag while they are not being used as this prevents the mite from being fed and eventually eliminated.

Scabies treatment

Treatment for human scabies should be guided by a dermatologist as it can vary according to the severity of the infestation and a person's skin type. However, it is usually done with scabies remedies such as:

  • Permethrin: is a cream that must be passed on the skin to eliminate the mite and its eggs. It can be used in adults, pregnant women and children over 2 years of age;
  • Crotamiton: can be purchased as a cream or lotion that should be applied daily. It should not be used by pregnant women or women who breast feed;
  • Ivermectin: is a pill that strengthens the immune system and helps to eliminate the mite. It should not be used by pregnant women, women who are breast-feeding or children under 15 kg.

Generally, these remedies should be applied throughout the body, from the neck down, and should stay 8 hours in contact with the skin and it is therefore recommended to do the treatment before bedtime.

In addition, during the treatment it is still important to maintain proper body hygiene and to wash in warm water all the clothes, sheets or towels that have been in direct contact with the skin.

People of the same family should go to a dermatologist to see if they have also been infected by the mite, initiating treatment if necessary.

Natural remedy for scabies

An excellent natural home remedy to alleviate the symptoms of scabies and facilitate treatment is aleo vera gel. This gel has properties that soothe the skin, reduce itching and can help eliminate dust mites.

To use this remedy, remove the gel from the inside of an aleo vera leaf and spread over the affected regions, letting it act for at least 15 minutes. then wash the region with water and  pH neutral soap.

See other natural remedies to treat scabies.

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