While many are quick to jump to the conclusion that only people who don’t shower and don’t keep a clean home can contract scabies, this is far from the truth. It is far more common than most people expect. There is also quite a bit of stigma and misinformation out there about scabies. Let us spend some time getting the facts about scabies correct.
The scabies rash is caused by a mite called Sarcoptes scabiei. Scabies mites are attracted to the warmth and smell of humans, more specifically the smell of our skin. So if you were thinking smothering yourself in onions would do the trick, that won’t keep scabies mites away (although you may find you have fewer friends).
Anyone can contract scabies: young or old, male or female. The scabies mite is typically passed from person to person, but can also be contracted by using an infected person’s belongings. What is certain is scabies is always spread by close contact to an infected person or areas an infected person has touched. For example, sharing a bed with someone who has scabies, even if the person is not in the bed, is not a good idea.
Regardless of the Sarcoptes scabiei’s choice mode of transportation, these particular mites cannot fly, jump or even scuttle quickly. In fact, they move very slowly and direct contact with them is the only way to become this mite’s new home. Once the human body comes into direct contact with these mites, the mite migrates to an area of rough or wrinkled skin (i.e., elbows, knuckles, knees, etc.) and it burrows under the skin. Yes, burrows, like a rabbit burrows into the ground. However, I'm sure you'll find that these guys are a lot less cute and fluffy than a bunny. It is this burrowing that causes the initial skin irritation, which in all senses of the word is an allergic reaction.
Once these mites create their burrows, they begin to lay their eggs and leave feces under your skin; as more mites are born, the rash grows and becomes itchier. As with most rashes that cause itching, scratching can spread the mites to other areas of the body. However, with scabies all that is necessary is to touch the rash and touch another area of your skin to spread the mites. Scabies is extremely contagious and it is important to begin treatment as soon as you are diagnosed.
A person who has never had scabies before could take several weeks to begin showing symptoms, but that person is still contagious during those weeks. The first weeks of being infected before symptoms start to show is called the incubation period. Children can easily contract mites simply because they are in close contact with other children and are likely not to show symptoms during the two to three week incubation period. A person who has had mites before usually begins to show symptoms within a few days of contracting them, lessening the length of the incubation period and thus the time they are unknowingly infecting others.
If even one mite is left alive, you are still contagious!
It is important to remember that you are still contagious if even one mite is still alive in your skin, even after your symptoms have subsided. Because of how contagious this parasite is, it is that much more important to find a surefire treatment that will kill the bugs the first time around without causing harm to you. Check out the Naturasil Scabies product category to find all natural products that will bring you relief and kill of all of the mites the first time around.
Our products are proven to eliminate scabies and human mites and are most effective when used consistently as directed and in combination with each other.