Scabies is an infectious skin condition caused by a tiny mite known as Sarcoptes scabiei. The mite is very tiny and can be seen only with a magnifying glass or under a microscope. It burrows into the skin and causes intense itching. Anyone irrespective of age, gender, race, social class or personal-hygiene can get scabies.
Tips to prevent scabies
The infestation spreads predominantly through direct skin contact with an infected person and rarely by contaminated bedding, towels and clothes. Hence, it is important to avoid close skin-to-skin contact with an infected person until they have been treated. Therefore, if a member of your family has scabies, everyone should be treated. Sexual partners and close contacts of the infected person should also be treated simultaneously. An important measure for the prevention of scabies is treating all the people suspected of being infectious even if they have no symptoms at the same time.
Clothing, towels and bedding of an infected person are infected with the mite. The mite, however, cannot survive for more than three days without a human host. Therefore, all the clothing, towels and bedding of the affected person should be washed in hot water and dried in a dryer. If it is not possible to wash some article, store it away from human contact for three days to eliminate mites. Vacuum mattresses and upholstered furniture can be used to remove mites/eggs.
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