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Common Symptoms Of Scabies

Updated on September 23, 2013

You’ve been up all night without any sleep and know you have to get help since the symptoms of scabies are getting worse. With burrows between your fingers and intense itching, it is hard to ignore this condition. Most of the time, you can go to the Dr. for help and they’ll prescribe you with a topical treatment. The most difficult part of these nasty critters is completely ridding them from your home. They don’t just hide beneath the skin. Some can be in your bed, on the carpet, or in corners of the home. Although they don’t last a long time without a host, there is still a chance to become reinfected.

How do you get scabies?

Sarcoptes scabiei causes

The most common way to get scabies is through skin-to-skin contact. These mites will live on a host for about 24 hours although some can live up to 36 hours. Even if someone has hung their coat next to yours, which is infested with scabies - it is almost impossible to contract it this way. Sharing clothes is another way to catch this mite but is quite uncommon. Physical contact through intercourse is one of the most common ways of contracting scabies. A lot of people refer to this condition as an STD but we look at it as a parasite since it can contracted through other ways besides intercourse.

These critters simply won’t leave the home. After you get a topical cream to rid of them, you will also need to clean the home. Start washing all of your bed sheets and every piece of clothing you have. To be safe, place any cotton, silk, or spandex material into a plastic bag. This includes stuffed animals. Tie the bag so no air gets in. You should leave the bag there for at least four days in order to kill any lurking scabies.

Have you ever had Scabies before?

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Mite Symptoms

Scabies Life Cycle

These mites cannot last longer than 3 days without a host. Let’s say a female mite infects you, being transferred from another person. The scabies mite takes about two weeks to lay her eggs. When she does, 5 eggs are laid per day. Going from egg to larvae is about 2-3 days. Once the larvae has emerged, they are in the “Nymph” stage where they survive on blood meals of the host. After 7 days, the Nymph will become an adult where the cycle will repeat itself again. For those of you who are curious on how many scabies are on the body, it could be anywhere from one to fifteen mites although usually no more than that.

If you notice burrows within your hands or other places in the body, these are where the bugs have traveled through your skin. Usually, the female will lay her eggs in there.

Another type of scabies is Norwegian scabies and although this is very rare, it is a serious condition. The person infected could have hundreds of these little bugs all over them. It often results in a “crusted” look. For example, the hand is a favorite place of these types of bugs and it will almost look like the hand is made of pie crust, except not very delicious.

Scabies Rash Treatment

Medicine for Bed Bug Bites

The top medical treatments currently are Permethrin, Crotamiton, and Sulfur Ointment. These are the only three treatments where it is safe to use for children that are under two. In case these medicines do not work, the Dr. will prescribe Lindane. The instructions must be followed correctly otherwise seizure or death can occur. Instead of using Lindane, we recommend at home treatments just to be on the safe side.

Besides medicine, you can also use a safe at home treatment. Here are a few that people have used:

Add three teaspoons of bleach to your bath water. Soak for at least ten minutes. It’s best to puncture the burrows before going into your bath. You can do this with a sterile needle. This way the bleach can make it’s way into the burrows and kill the scabies.

Try dabbing Borax and Hydrogen Peroxide to problem areas. In the areas that itch the most, hold a towel soaked in these ingredients to the area. You might feel tingling but later the mites should die. Do this for six days straight.

Sizes of Scabies + Life Cycle

Days until next stage
2-3 days
4-7 days
4-5 weeks of life left

Scabies Prevention

Mite control

  • Once you finally get rid of scabies, it is time to focus on prevention techniques. Here are a few you can use.
  • Wash your blankets and pillows once each week. Keep the room squeeky clean. By cleaning it on a daily basis, you can prevent contracting these bugs again.
  • Stay with one partner only. Having multiple sexual partners can raise your risk of catching these horrible mites.
  • Avoid shaking hands with people whenever possible. If you are greeting someone, simply smile and let them know you are happy to meet them. There’s no physical contact needed.
  • A lot of you heard that “sharing is caring” but in this case, it’s not. Never share or lend clothes to anyone. Don’t try on other people’s close. Stay away from cotton items.
  • Animals can also pass scabies to humans. Make sure you bathe your dog or cat every week to minimize the likelihood of catching these little critters.


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