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Disease prevention and treatment

Scabies and how you can treat them

Scabies is a contagious skin condition caused by a tiny burrowing mite known as Sarcoptes scabies. This condition causes the skin to itch intensely in the area where the mite burrows.

Scabies is highly contagious and spreads quickly through close physical contact with an infected person. Due to the highly contagious nature of the disease doctors usually recommend treatment for the entire family or contact group of an infected person.

One major sign of the infection is severe itching of specific areas of the body, especially at night. Also, tiny irregular burrow tracks that are made up of tiny bumps and blisters are usually found in the part of the skin that is infected. These tracks usually appear in folds of the skin.

In older children and adults, scabies is usually found in the armpits, between fingers, along the waist, the soles of the feet, the inner elbows, around the breast, the male genital areas, as well as the buttocks. Common sites of the infection in young children and Infants are; the scalp, palms, and soles of the feet.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime

In cases where an individual has had scabies before signs and symptoms of the disease may develop within a few days of exposure to the infection. On occasions where it is the individual the first time contracting scabies, it can take as long as six weeks for the symptoms to begin to show. It is important to note, however, that you can spread scabies even though you have not started showing signs of the infection.

Scabies is caused by a female mite that burrows beneath the skin, making a tunnel where it deposits eggs. When these eggs hatch, they work their way to the surface of the skin where they mature and spread to other areas of the skin. And subsequently to other people. Itching of specific areas of the body happens because of allergic reactions to the mites, their eggs, and their waste.

The spread of scabies can be prevented by wearing clean clothes. If you wash your clothes, towels, and beddings regularly with warm and soapy water, it reduces your risk of contracting the disease.

Another way of preventing scabies is by avoiding direct contact with an infected person or the clothing items of an affected individual.

Content created and supplied by: DrGeraldine (via Opera News )


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