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Scabies Disease and Symptoms

Scabies is a skin disease that causes itching and redness. It is a dermatological condition caused by a microscopic mite called Sarcoptes scabiei, which multiplies on the skin surface and invades the skin, resulting in itching. Scabies can affect a person’s quality of life, especially due to intense itching that worsens at night. It is a treatable condition, and it does not have any permanent effects on humans. Scabies is a worldwide disease and can affect anyone regardless of age, gender, or personal factors. The individual’s hygiene and health have no impact on the likelihood of contracting scabies.

While scabies symptoms can occur anywhere on the body, they typically affect the wrists, spaces between the fingers, elbows, armpits, buttocks, and genitalia.

Symptoms of Scabies

The onset of scabies symptoms varies depending on whether the person has been exposed to mites before. In individuals experiencing their first exposure to scabies mites, symptoms may take around 4-6 weeks to develop. In those who have been previously exposed, symptoms can appear within a few days. Regardless of the duration of symptom onset, scabies mites are contagious during this process. A person infested with scabies can transmit it even without symptoms.
Itching: The most common symptom of scabies is itching. It can be severe and tends to worsen, especially at night.
Rash: Scabies infestation leads to the development of burrow marks, lines, or pimple-like, itchy blisters with a red and scaly appearance.
Sores: Intense scratching can cause skin irritation and result in sores. These sores can also become infected.
Thick Crusts: A more severe and contagious type of scabies, known as crusted scabies or Norwegian scabies, presents with thick, gray crusts caused by thousands of mites.

Is Scabies Contagious?

Scabies is a contagious disease. The mites responsible for scabies can easily pass from an infected person to another. Most people acquire scabies through direct skin-to-skin contact. Less commonly, people may acquire mites from infested items such as bedding, clothing, and furniture. Mites can survive without a human host for approximately three to four days. Scabies tends to spread easily in crowded communities and environments with close contact, such as nursing homes, schools, and child care facilities.

Common Areas of Symptom Occurrence in Adults:

  • Fingers and webs between fingers
  • Nail areas
  • Armpits
  • Waistline
  • Inner wrists
  • Buttocks
  • Genitalia
  • Breasts
  • Elbows

Common Areas of Symptom Occurrence in Infants and Young Children:

  • Head
  • Face
  • Neck
  • Palms of the hands
  • Soles of the feet

Treatment of Scabies

Scabies is highly contagious; therefore, anyone in close contact with an diagnosed individual should undergo medical evaluation, even if they have no symptoms. To prevent reinfection, all individuals should be treated simultaneously.
Before starting treatment, the bedding, clothing, and towels of the person affected by scabies should be washed at high temperatures.

If an individual has scabies symptoms or has been in contact with someone affected by scabies, they should consult a healthcare professional directly. Over-the-counter or hearsay remedies have no effect on scabies treatment. Only prescription medications should be used for treating scabies in humans. After evaluation by a doctor, scabies treatment aims to alleviate symptoms and promote healing. In cases where severe itching leads to secondary infections, concurrent antibiotic treatment may be administered.

Preventing Scabies

To prevent reinfestation and the spread of scabies to others:
– Clean all clothing and laundry. Wash all clothing, towels, and bed linens used within the three days before starting treatment at high temperatures and dry them at high temperatures. Store items that cannot be washed in a sealed bag.
– Seek Medical Attention: If you have symptoms that may indicate scabies, consult your doctor without delay. Many skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis can cause itching and redness. A qualified doctor can provide an accurate diagnosis and the most suitable treatment plan. Taking cold showers or trying over-the-counter remedies may alleviate symptoms, but they cannot eliminate scabies mites. A dermatologist can successfully diagnose scabies and provide the most appropriate treatment.
Please note that the information provided is for informational purposes only. For a diagnosis and treatment, it is essential to consult your doctor.

*The content of our page is for informational purposes only, please consult your doctor for diagnosis and treatment.

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