What is scabies?

Scabies is a contagious skin disease caused by a small tick. The female tick lays its eggs in the epidermis of the human skin, which hatch into adult mites. This means that the symptoms of the disease can last for months.

Scabies causes itching all over the body. The skin lesions vary from person to person and are most often short, linear nodules between the toes or small red bumps that later blister. Often there are no visible skin lesions.

The tick is spread from person to person through prolonged direct skin-to-skin contact.

Animals can also be carriers of such a tick, but if the animal transmits it to a person, the mite cannot reproduce and dies after a few days.

In people who are malnourished or have a weakened immune system, scabies can cause Norwegian scabies syndrome, which is highly contagious and is characterized by thickening of the skin and a scaly rash.

What causes scabies?

Scabies is caused by an eight-legged tick (Sarcoptesscabiei var. Hominis), which is less than 0.5 mm long. This type of mite can only survive three days in the environment. But in the human body, the tick can reproduce and cause symptoms for years.

The tick’s life cycle begins with tunneling in the epidermis where the female lays her eggs. The larvae hatch from the eggs in 3 to 10 days and undergo metamorphosis into nymphs.

Nymphs turn into adults by laying additional eggs and live for about 3-4 weeks. The movement of the mites in the skin and the formation of tunnels in the epidermis leads to severe itching, which is an allergic reaction to the proteins of the tick.

Scabies is spread by rubbing the skin, which allows the infected tick to transmit it to a healthy person.

Ticks develop first in the area where the infestation occurred. And if the mites were transmitted during intercourse, lesions will first appear on the penis, vagina or groin.

However, scabies is not always transmitted during sexual contact, longer skin-to-skin rubbing is needed, although rarely the transmission can also occur during a prolonged handshake.< /p>

Infested sheets and bedding can also cause scabies. For example, if you sleep in different beds that have been shared by different people and one of them has been infected with scabies, you are likely to get infected. When you go to bed you will certainly rub on the bedding and this rubbing will cause the mite to penetrate your skin.

What are the symptoms of scabies?

Symptoms usually appear 2 to 6 weeks after exposure to the bacteria. The most characteristic initial symptom is strong and continuous growth especially at night.

What do scabies skin lesions look like? The skin may look like an insect bite or the lesions may take the form of pimples or blisters especially around the wrists, elbows, nails and groin or nodules around the nails. The skin may also be reddened or sores may develop due to the scratching of the itch.

The tunnels in the epidermis – these are S-shaped and indicate the movement of the tick, can also be seen especially when they are around the fingers and toes.

These tunnels can be small enough not to be noticed. Therefore, you are considered to have scabies if you have very severe itching, even without a rash, pits or pits on the skin.

The scabies tick often nests between the fingers and toes, on the thighs, on the elbows, in the lower back, in the genital area and under the breasts in women. The face, neck, hands and feet, as well as the lips are not affected, except in infants and young children.

Risk factors such as advanced age or suppression of the immune system can cause complications. In Norwegian scabies, the skin becomes covered with a thick, dry, scaly rash that may itch but contains hundreds of millions of ticks. Norwegian scabies is the most contagious form of scabies and the most difficult to treat.

Many other skin rashes can look like scabies, for example allergic reactions, contact dermatitis and rashes caused by a virus such as herpes zoster.

Mange treatment

One of the main methods of treating mange is the use of topical medications that contain insecticidal ingredients such as permethrin or ivermectin.

These medications are applied directly to the skin and left on for a period of time, usually about 8-12 hours. They kill the scabies ticks and their eggs, which helps to cure the infection.

However, the treatment of scabies is not limited to this. It is important to implement additional measures to prevent re-infection and to prevent the spread of the disease to other people.

This includes periodically washing all clothing, bedding and towels at high temperatures, disinfecting objects and surfaces that have been in contact with the infection, and isolating the infected person during treatment.< /strong>

After treating scabies, symptoms usually begin to improve after a few days, but it is important to complete the full course of medication as prescribed by the doctor. If symptoms persist or worsen, it is necessary to consult a medical professional again.

In case of complications or in the presence of concomitant infections, such as bacterial secondary skin infections, treatment may require additional medical procedures and medications.

Scab is a serious disease that can lead to unpleasant consequences if not treated correctly and in time.

Therefore, it is important to consult a medical professional at the first symptoms and strictly follow the treatment and prevention guidelines to prevent the spread of infection and to achieve a full recovery.

How to protect yourself from scabies

Prevention of scabies is essential as this infectious skin problem can be very unpleasant and spreads easily.

  1. Avoid contact with infected people: If you know someone in your immediate environment has scabies, try to avoid physical contact with them, including sharing clothes, bedding and subjects.

  2. Maintain personal hygiene: Regular hand and body washing with soap and warm water can help prevent infection. Also, regular changes of clothing and bedding can reduce the risk of contamination.

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