Scabies is a skin condition that is caused by a mite. These mites are tiny and will bury underneath the skin and cause severe itching. The mites cannot be seen with the eye but must be viewed under a microscope. Scabies is transmitted from person to person through close contact. Scabies will produce small bumps and blisters in the infected area.
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A doctor will diagnose a scabies infection. Lotions and creams are available to kill the mites, which only live on their host for 2 to 3 days. Elimite is a medication that is commonly prescribed for scabies. To apply the medication you will rub the lotion on your entire body from your neck to your feet and allow it to stay on overnight. The medication will kill the mites immediately so reapplication is usually not necessary.
After the mites have been destroyed there will still be itching. The itching can continue for several days. Antihistamines can be taken orally and creams such as Benedryl can be applied to the rash in order to ease the itching. Treat the rash like you would any other rash. Take an oatmeal bath or apply cold compresses to the area to help with the itching.
Scabies is highly contagious. All areas that the infected person has been on should be cleaned. Bed sheets, comforters and towels should be washed and carpet can be cleaned. Use the dryer to dry anything that has been washed; it should not be allowed to air dry. You should vacuum the area well and throw away the vacuum bag when you are though. Cut under the nails and clean them so the mites do not spread.