THE VALLEY, The Health Promotion Unit is advising members of the public against Scabies.

Scabies is an infestation of the skin caused by mites.  Scabies is transmitted by direct, prolonged skin-to-skin contact with a person already infested with scabies.  Infestation can also occur by sharing clothes, towels and bedding used by a person with scabies.  It is often spread to household members and sexual partners.

Scabies symptoms may take 4 – 6 weeks to appear if you have never previously been infested or a few days if you have had a previous Scabies infestation. 

Symptoms include:

  • pimple-like irritations, burrows or rash of the skin.
  • Intense itching, especially at night and over most of the body.
  • Sores on the body caused by scratching.

There are several topical treatments for scabies. However, scabies mites may survive up to 7 days outside of a host (meaning the person) and can lead to re-infestation if appropriate precautions are not taken. Therefore it is recommended that:

  • All clothes, bedding and towels used by an infested person should be washed in hot water and  dried in a hot dryer
  • Disinfect floors and bathroom surfaces with disinfectant.
  • Vacuum floors, carpets and rugs.
  • Quarantine in a plastic bag for two weeks any items that cannot be washed, hot dried, frozen or dry-cleaned

For more information, please contact the Health Promotion Unit at 497-2540 or your health care provider.


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