How to Treat Scabies?

  • December 01, 2023
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How to Treat Scabies?

What is Scabies?

Scabies, a parasitic infestation caused by the Sarcoptes scabiei mite, occurs when the mite burrows into the skin, creating tunnels and laying eggs. This triggers an immune response, leading to intense itching and a distinctive rash. The nearly invisible mites are primarily transmitted through skin-to-skin contact, with indirect transmission possible through infested clothing and bedding. The hallmark symptom is a persistent itch that intensifies at night, causing sleep disturbances and considerable distress. In close living quarters, scabies is highly contagious, necessitating simultaneous examination and treatment of family members and close contacts if one individual is diagnosed.

Commonly known as sarcoptic mange, scabies is more prevalent in tropical regions and densely populated areas. While the condition is a global concern, its colloquial term emphasizes its connection to animals. Animals can contract scabies from a slightly different species of mites, but these mites affecting pets typically cannot adapt to human hosts. However, individuals may experience some form of reaction when in contact with mites from their pets.

Why is Scabies a Concern?

Beyond the immediate discomfort of incessant itching, scabies raises concerns due to its potential complications if left untreated. Scratching the affected areas can break the skin, providing an entry point for bacteria and leading to secondary bacterial infections. These infections can exacerbate the symptoms and complicate the treatment process. Moreover, the relentless itching associated with scabies can significantly impact an individual's quality of life, causing sleep disturbances, heightened stress, and anxiety.