Your rash and itching problems may be Scabies

by health

Scabies, which causes terrible itching and rashes, is a affliction that is becoming more widespread, but you seldom hear any talk about it.

Since the late 1970s, the occurrence of scabies has grown and while it has always been present in developing regions, it is now not uncommon in developed countries too.

A description of exactly what causes scabies can make patients agitated because scabies is an infestation of mites that burrow under your skin.

The scabies symptoms which include rashes and blemishes, itching, dry skin, cracking skin and crustations, can be similar to psoriasis which is a auto-immune condition. Many people who have the symptoms believe they have an infection or psoriasis but if you have scabies, your body is actually under invasion by Sarcoptes scabiei mite parasites.

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Your body may be under attack by parasites

An infestation occurs when a tiny animal is found living in large numbers in or on a person. In scabies, a tiny insect called Sarcoptes scabiei burrows under the skin. It is rather like a microscopic mole, digging burrows that can be 1 cm or more in length in the outer layers of your skin.

sbaies mite burrowing under skin

These burrows and the tissue around them then become red, itchy and inflamed. The scratching that follows often damages the skin further, making it difficult for a doctor to diagnose the condition, and it sometimes allows a secondary infection caused by bacteria to enter the area. This will further aggravate the discomfort.

The only way to catch scabies is by close contact with someone who already has the disease. The problem is that, in its early stages, a person may not realize that a couple of itchy spots that they have on their hands are scabies, and so shaking hands with another person could spread the disease.

Once on your skin, the mite starts burrowing, but it may be several days before you are aware of its unwelcome presence. The most common areas for it to settle are the fingers, palms, heels, groin and wrists; but it can spread across the entire body. It is unusual for the head and neck to be involved.

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Video of Scabies mite that causes itching

If you have hundreds of these moving around under your skin, it is easy to understand why the itching is severe

Scabies Treament

The scabies mite is just visible to the naked eye but appears like a spot of dust on a piece of black paper. It cannot be seen on the skin. If there is any doubt about the diagnosis, your doctor will gently scrape some of the affected area with the edge of a scalpel, and send the scrapings collected to a pathologist for examination under a microscope. The mites and their eggs can then be seen.

The incessant itching usually sends most victims to a doctor fairly quickly. Treatment can then be given to kill all the mites. This usually involves painting the entire body with a lotion or cream. All other members of the family, and anyone else closely connected with the sufferer, should also be treated at the same time. It is advisable to change all the bed linen that night too, and to repeat the treatment on the patient after a week, so that any mites that hatch from the remaining eggs after the initial treatment will be killed. Occasionally there can be a reaction to the creams and lotions that are used, but this is only temporary.

Often the itch continues for 10-20 days after completion of the treatment.

This is due to an allergy to the scabies bodies or their products (eggs, droppings, etc.) and not necessarily a failure of the treatment.

Scabies is not a disease of unhygienic families and can occur in the children of the most scrupulously clean mother. No one can be blamed for the spread of the disease, but obviously the sooner it is treated, the less it will spread.

Updated: 08/29/2013, health
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