Do you have scabies?
Scabies is one of those conditions that is on the highest level of annoying. It’s not serious enough to be lethal, but it is serious enough to totally upend your life for many months, or even years.
If you think you have scabies, read on, because the following information might just help you get your life back.
What is scabies?
Scabies is a skin mite that burrows under the surface of your skin and lays eggs. These eggs eventually hatch into more scabies mites, and the cycle continues until the mites are treated.
Scabies have been around for many millennia, and there are even scripts of the ancient Romans writing about the horrors of scabies. It’s likely they will be around for many more.
How do you catch scabies?
Scabies is caught through prolonged skin-to-skin contact. While it’s very unlikely you will catch scabies from a hug or a handshake, you can catch it from close contact sports such as wrestling and judo, massages, and from sleeping in the same bed as someone with scabies.
How do you know if you have scabies?
The most characteristic symptom of scabies is the relentless itch that the mites cause under your skin. Once you’ve experienced scabies, you’ll understand why they call it the “seven year itch”. It really is an itch like nothing you will have ever experienced before – one of the reasons it drives people crazy!
How do you treat scabies? Six treatments that actually work…
Permethrin is the first line of treatment for scabies, and is the standard prescription treatment that a good doctor will give you.
Permethrin is an insecticide, and for scabies treatment is mixed with a basic body lotion. To use, you will need to apply to your entire body, chin to toe, and leave it on for at least 8 hours.
The easiest way to do this is to apply it at night, put on some light cotton clothes, and then shower in the morning to wash it off. Because permethrin is a poison, it’s never a good idea to leave it on for more than 8 hours. Be sure to wash it off in the recommended time frame.
It’s also very important that you use permethrin properly. There are many cases of people claiming permethrin does not work, but it is a treatment that must be applied with adherence to very strict instructions for it to work.
For example, it must be applied absolutely everywhere on the body. Scabies are microscopic and can live anywhere on the skin. That means you must apply it between your fingers, between your buttocks, inside your belly button – the entire surface of the skin must be covered.
You must also be sure not to wash the treatment off during that 8 hours period. Many people will go to the toilet and wash their hands, or maybe prepare some food and wash some dishes. This is obviously a big no-no! Applying any water to your skin after you’ve applied permethrin will wash the cream off and compromise the whole treatment.
Ivermectin is originally a medication that was used on livestock to treat parasites. However, it is now also used in lower dosages in humans to treat scabies, and has shown to be very effective, especially when treating large populations.
While permethrin treatment can be rather expensive and cumbersome, treatment with ivermectin is fast and efficient.
Ivermectin must be prescribed from your doctor, and in some states it is still not approved for human use. However, in the places where human usage is approved it has shown to be extremely effective and the perfect “one-two punch” complement to permethrin treatment.
The dosage of ivermectin you should take depends on your body weight and it is essential you get this correct to avoid complications. A doctor should be able to tell you what the correct dosage is, or you can refer to this guide here.
Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil is a natural essential oil extracted from the melaleuca plant in Australia. It has been shown to be one of the most versatile and effective essential oils for everything from fungal and bacterial infections, and even scabies.
In fact, the Aborigine population in Australia has long used this as their front line defense against the scabies epidemic that often plagues their rural communities.
It has been shown to be extremely effective in studies and is the perfect complement to your scabies regimen.
To use tea tree oil for scabies, make sure you use a genuine organic tea tree oil, and spot treat the very bad areas, or mix with a moisturizing lotion and apply over your body.
Clove oil is a very strong essential oil that has shown in studies to be extremely toxic to scabies mites.
Because of its potency, clove oil cannot be used alone. It must be mixed with a carrier before applying to your skin.
First of all, ensure you’re using an authentic, high quality and organic clove oil to avoid damage to your skin.
To apply, you can either drop 10-12 drop in a bath and soak for 20 minutes, or mix with a moisturizer and apply to the most affected areas.
Sulfur is long-standing natural treatment against scabies. In one study in India, it was shown to result in a 91% cure rate when mixed with turmeric, which is extremely promising.
Sulfur can be applied by adding a sulfur powder to a bath, but the most effective treatment is to use a sulfur ointment and apply it directly to the skin.
Sulfur is known to dry out skin, so it’s equally important to keep your skin moisturized during this time. Aloe vera gel is a great option for this.
Neem is probably the perfect treatment for scabies, because not only is it highly insecticidal, but it is also great for your skin.
Neem is an extract from the neem tree, which is known as nature’s insecticide. If you ever see a neem plant, you will notice it is completely free of insects, as the tree itself is toxic to them. However, it is completely harmless and even beneficial to humans.
One of the best ways to treat scabies with neem is with neem oil. You can either soak in it in a bath tub or apply it directly to the skin for a few minutes and then rinse it off in the shower.
Neem oil can be extremely messy and gooey, but it is one of the best natural treatments for scabies and is worth the trouble. Not to mention, it does wonders for your skin as well.
Make sure you’re getting a quality, organic neem oil, such as this one.