If you have this constant itching on some part of your body, it’s never easy to diagnose the problem because there are various types of skin conditions that can cause itching or inflammation. It’s obvious to get puzzled and mistake it for scabies like disease, or may be, mistake a rabies infection as normal itching case. It could be dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, fungal infection etc. In order to distinguish scabies from other skin conditions, you must have knowledge about its symptoms and parasite responsible – Sarcoptes scabiei.
What is scabies? What causes it?
Scabies is a contagious skin infestation by a particular type of mite – Sarcoptes scabiei. The female mite burrows into the human skin. The mite is safer under skin and common disinfectants could barely touch it. The mite lays eggs under first layer of skin. Sever itching is stimulated by allergic reaction of the skin to the external infection. Most severe form of scabies is called Crusted scabies, but isn’t common and is found in only among people with weak immunity, like HIV positive cases. In crusted scabies the infected person may have millions of mites.
This is the most relevant part if you doubt a scabies infestation and looking for confirmation.
After infestation, the symptoms may take two to six weeks to appear. The affected person will develop pimple-like rash on the infested part. Person will experience severe itching that increases during night while in bed. Most commonly, scabies appears in wrists, between fingers, along waistline, in the groin or genitals, buttocks, folds of the abdomen, underneath breasts, neck, armpits, elbows, knees, ankles but it can also spread to other parts of the body if left unattended or ill-treated.
Second major symptom is the burrows or lines these mites leave behind while moving ahead. Then, there are tiny bumps, which are home to mite’s eggs. Don’t mistake usual redness due to scratching as symptom of scabies; rather look for lines unearthed after you stop scratching.
During night, the itching intensifies as mites get optimal temperature to be active and move around. Moreover, during day people are more distracted because they are busy. It’s a typical symptom of scabies infestation.
Third, if you live in a family or a community or share place with anyone, then you must be curious if it’s only you who is moving around scratching between his tights or fingers? Scabies is highly contagious and it can survive for a couple of days hiding in you bedding, cloths, or anything that you touch. So, the infestation hit everyone that comes in contact with infected person. If you have scabies, then chances are high that other around you might have acquired it.
Are you living in vulnerable environment?
People in developing countries where poverty compels them to share space in crowded shelters or unhygienic hospitals, school & college hostels are more vulnerable to scabies infection. You should worry about this itching between your thighs if you are living in such vulnerable environment for past few weeks or have just returned from such place.
Scabies mite is hard to kill and it takes time to appear its symptoms. The mite lays eggs, and if these eggs not terminated through medication, the number of mites will increase underneath skin, leading development of more bumps, zigzag red lines, and itching. Even worse, you can infest other people around you easily, so you need to be careful and get it treated as soon as possible because scabies symptoms may take over a month to completely disappear.