How do I treat scabies?

The best way to deal with an outbreak of scabies is a thorough spring clean of linen and clothing, as well as applying specialized lotion or shampoo to the affected area. Any current partner(s) and housemates should also be treated and notified.

How do I prevent catching scabies?

Given the nature of scabies there is little you can do to prevent yourself from getting them aside from avoiding close bodily contact with someone who is infected. If you are diligent with treatment shampoos as well as washing bedding, towels or clothing that has come into contact with the infected area or person, you can deal with the issue quickly and decrease any chance of passing it on. This process may have to be repeated to avoid reinfection.

What are the symptoms of scabies?

Symptoms will appear around 4 weeks after infestation and can include small red marks on the skin, a rash or itchiness especially at night.  Remember minor skin irritations in the genital area are also quite common, so don't rush to the assumption that any itch is scabies related. For peace of mind, visit your local doctor or Marie Stopes International clinic, as a close inspection by a healthcare professional will confirm if scabies are present or not.

What is scabies?

Scabies can be difficult to identify from pubic lice as they both cause itching in the affected area. Scabies are small mites that burrow into the skin in warm areas such as the groin and armpits. They are not always sexually transmitted but may be transmitted through close skin contact or the wider environment through bedding, towels or clothing.