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Facts about scabies
Scabies is a contagious disease that affects the skin. It is produced by some wingless insects known as the Human Itch mite or Scabies itch mite. The infection is caused by the female insect which gets under the skin and lays daily 2-3 eggs. The affected area will become itchy especially at night, and a rash will appear. Also, a zigzag blister hard to see will appear in that area.
The most affected areas are the fingers, between the fingers, wrists, elbows, armpits and around the waist.
The female can deposit eggs for five weeks and after that the new mites will deposit their own eggs and so the infection will spread continuously.
Scabies is hard to diagnose because the insects can not be easily seen. If one gets into close contact with an infected person, by shaking hands or by using the same towel or clothes, the disease will affect him too. The disease is transmitted not only by insects but by eggs too. Scabies affects mostly the children, especially those who live in boarding schools; roommates, people who live in small spaces and sexual partners. Those who live in crowded places, in unsanitary conditions are most likely to develop the disease. Romans used to treat scabies with sulfur (6 - 10% in lotion or cream), but allergies can occur from using it.
If you suspect you are infected with scabies, you should wash or bathe in diluted Lice R GoneŽ Shampoo, Safe Solutions, Inc. Enzyme Cleaner with Peppermint, or borax. The doctor should be consulted first. You can also use Elimite (or permethrin cream).
Members of the family should be examined too because the rate of transmission among them of this disease is quite high. You could do that with a magnifying glass because you can not see the insects otherwise.
To prevent scabies from spreading you should wash all your towels, clothes and other laundry in hot water at over 120o F. Using special cleaning solutions like borax and Safe Solutions is also indicated. Cut your nails in order to remove the eggs or insects that could have sheltered over there.
Also, hairbrushes, combs and hair accessories should be disinfected in hot water and the same special solutions used for towels for at least 15 minutes.
Generally scabies will clear up after two weeks of treatment but check-ups must be done periodically to see if reinstalment of the disease has occurred.
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