Every year nearly hundreds of people suffer from the problem of scabies irrespective of the socioeconomic status and age. Nearly 300 million people get infected by scabies all around the world. Scabies is a condition which is caused due to the infestation of eight-legged microscopic mite known by the name of Sarcoptes scabiei. It is important to remember that is not an infection rather it only a skin condition. The mites excavate the skin and lay their eggs this leads to their infestation in the skin which further results in rashes and intense itching on the surface of the skin. Scabies is a highly contagious disease and it spreads like a wildfire through close physical contact. The condition of scabies mostly occurs in children and young adults. The outbreak of this disease is common in the schools and childcare facilities.
The mites known as Sarcoptes scabiei are the reason why scabies occur. These are eight-legged mites. The size of the mites is so petite that they are not visible to a naked human eye. These mites can only be seen with the help of a microscope. As scabies are not visible to the human eye thus the condition of scabies is recognized through the rashes which are caused by mites. Given below are some of the key indicators which help in recognizing the scabies skin condition
The signs and symptoms of a person suffering from scabies vary from individual to individual. If the person is suffering from the problem of scabies for the very first time then it would take approximately 2 to 4 weeks for the symptoms to appear in the person. However, in patients who have a history of the scabies infestation, the symptoms appear within 1 to 4 days. The signs and symptoms of scabies are inclusive of
Scabies can occur anywhere in the human body. In adults, the scabies are mostly found
In young children and infants, the scabies are mostly found in
In humans, the condition of scabies is caused by an eight-legged mite known by the name of Sarcoptes scabiei. The female mites excavate the skin and make a tunnel beneath the skin where it lays and deposits its eggs. After hatching from the eggs these mites move towards the surface of the skin. From the surface of the skin, they spread to various parts of the body after maturing. The allergic reaction of the mites to the body causes itching on the skin. The mites can be spread to other people when a non-infected person physically comes in contact with an infected person. Sharing the beds and the clothing of the infected person can also cause scabies to spread.
In order to diagnose scabies, a doctor may examine a person for the classic symptoms of the disease like burrow characteristics, skin rashes, and signs of mites. When the doctor is able to locate the burrow of the mites a sample from that area is taken by the doctor. The doctor then examines the sample under the microscope to confirm the presence of either eggs or the mites or both.
The treatment for scabies concentrates on the complete elimination of the infestation. The doctors usually prescribe topical medications to provide relief in the symptoms of scabies. Normally the doctor would recommend the patient to apply the topical medication on the whole body below the neck region and leave it for approximately 8 to 10 hours. Due to the simple fact that scabies is a highly contagious disease the doctor may recommend the treatment of scabies to all the member of the family of the infected person. The medicines which are commonly prescribed by the doctor are
Lindane lotion: this lotion is usually prescribed for treating scabies in the adults. This lotion is not safe to be used on kids less than 10 years of age.
Permethrin cream: this topical medication kills the mites and their kids. This medication can be used in pregnant women, adults, and children above 2 months of age.
Ivermectin: this is an oral medication and is generally prescribed to people who have a compromised immune system. This medication is not recommended to be given to patients who are pregnant, or children who weigh less than 15 kilograms.
Apart from the usual treatment for scabies involving topical applications and medication an infected person can also opt for some home remedies to provide relief in the condition. Some of the home remedies which can be used for the treatment of scabies are
There are four stages in the life cycle of scabies
The female Sarcoptes scabiei lays and deposits nearly 2 to 3 eggs as they excavate through the skin. The eggs generally hatch within 3 to 4 days. After the hatching of the eggs takes place the larvae move onto the surface of the skin. The larvae which come out of the egg has only 3 pair of legs. After the molting of larvae, there are four pairs of legs in the resulting nymphs. The nymphs then molt into adults. The mating between male and female mites happens only once which is sufficient to make the female mite fertile for the rest of the life.
In order to prevent re-infestation of scabies, there are certain prevention steps which are required to be taken
Scabies is a condition which can be very irritating for an individual because of the symptoms exhibited. The condition of scabies does not heal overnight and proper care needs to be taken to avoid spreading of the disease. The above article provides details about scabies, its treatment, and prevention.