Save Yourself From Scabies!
Scabies is an unpleasant skin condition to say the least. You get a horrible rash with pimple-like bumps, and the itching is almost unbearable. But, I think what really makes it a nightmare is the knowledge that it’s not just caused by some infection or virus, but rather an insect called the human itch mite that burrows under your skin to set up a little nest where it then lays its eggs and creates more mites. This is like that urban legend where spiders lay eggs under your skin, which then burst forth…except this is real.
Scabies is generally spread through direct and prolonged skin-to-skin contact with someone that already has scabies. So, on the bright side a simple handshake or hug isn’t going to give you scabies. However, crowded conditions such as in nursing homes, prisons, child care facilities, and extended care facilities can make for a perfect breeding ground. What’s worse is these little buggers can survive and thrive on a human for up to two months.
If you get scabies, you must go to a doctor immediately. There are no over-the-counter medications available, and the scabicide cream or lotion can only be gotten from a doctor. Usually, when one member of a household is treated for scabies, everyone needs to be treated for it, as it is highly likely at least one other person living there also has it.
There are ways you can prevent scabies. Scabies can’t survive off of a human for more than 72 hours, so you can seal up clothing for 72 hours to kill the pests. They are also killed in the laundry, so dump the bastards and put the spin cycle on high for a quick execution. Washing your hands can also lessen the chances of transferring the mites to another person. This one might seem obvious, but you might also want to limit prolonged contact with other people and avoid sharing clothes and other personal items…basically just seal yourself in a bubble and you’ll be safe.
Have you or someone you know ever had scabies? How awful was it and what did you do to get rid of it?