If you are suffering from a persistent red rashes all over the body that is either itchy or painful (sometimes both) then chances are that you may be suffering from scabies. This article will provide a brief overview of the condition and will suggest some common home remedies to get relief fast.
What Causes Scabies?
Scabies is a highly contagious skin infection caused by a mite with the scientific name of Sarcoptes Scabiei. These mites burrow under the epidermis and may survive by feeding on the skin cells for up to a month. If untreated, they may reproduce making the condition even more serious.
This condition is prevalent among children and young adults. Scabies can be transmitted from an infected person to someone who is not infected by direct physical contact. If one gets infected with scabies, that person can trigger a major outbreak in crowded areas, such as hospitals and day care centers. Scabies may be transmitted via sexual contact as well!
Common Symptoms of Scabies
Scabies appear as a rash the produces small red bumps, which look very similar to a mosquito bite. However, they are accompanied by a persistent itch which can soon become extremely painful as well. If left untreated, these bumps before more inflamed, ultimately turning into pus-filled blisters.
Scabies may appear all over the body, including but not limited to:
- The space between the fingers
- Shoulder blades
- Under the breasts
- Genital area
- Soles of the feet
Home Remedies for Scabies
As mentioned earlier, scabies is a very common skin affliction and your local pharmacy will probably be riddled with a laundry-list of over-the-counter and prescription-strength medications. However, there are several natural remedies, which are not very intrusive but are still highly effective to eliminate scabies without requiring you to opt for doctor prescribed treatments.
- Tea Tree Oil
You may be forgiven for thinking that our website may be funded (we are not!) by a tea tree oil lobby, because of the sheer number of times it shows up as a possible remedy for a wide variety of skin afflictions. Feel free to do your independent research, but at the end of the day you will find that tea tree oil is indeed a potent remedy for a wide variety of skin conditions, including scabies.
Using tea tree oil will cure you of your scabies because:
- It balances the pH level of your skin by making it slightly acidic. Not only does your skin become healthy, but it also makes the environment extremely inhospitable for the scabies parasite.
- Tea tree oil contains terpinen-4-ol which directly attacks and eliminates the scabies parasite.
- The anti-microbial properties of tea tree oil will protect the affected area from secondary infections.
Following are the ways by which you can use tea tree oil to cure your scabies:
- Fill your bathtub with lukewarm water and but about 12 drops of tea tree oil in it. Soak yourself in this water for at least 15 minutes, two times a day.
- Mix tea tree oil with olive oil in a 1:1 ratio. Apply this to an unaffected part of your skin, to ensure that your skin is not overtly sensitive to it. If it is, you may increase the content of olive oil, however the ratio of tea tree oil to olive oil should not exceed 1:2, for the treatment to be effective. Now apply the mixture to the affected areas with a cotton ball. Do not wash the area and allow your skin to soak the mixture, so that it may eliminate the scabies parasite.
Both of the above methods should get rid of the scabies infection in a few weeks. Please note that tea tree oil is extremely harsh in an undiluted form and you should never apply it to your scabies without diluting it first. Also, tea tree oil should never be orally ingested under any circumstances.
- Borax and Hydrogen Peroxide
Borax and hydrogen peroxide can be combined to form a highly effective treatment for scabies. Borax is a natural insecticide and fungicide. Hydrogen peroxide is a known anti-bacterial agent. When used together, they will kill the scabies parasite and also reduce the chances of secondary infection in the inflamed area. Following is how you apply the treatment:
- Fill a bathtub with lukewarm water.
- Mix two cups of borax and one cup of hydrogen peroxide.
- Soak yourself in this bath for at least 15 minutes.
Take this bath at least once a day and your condition should improve within weeks!
- Clove oil
Besides having known anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, clove oil is also an analgesic, which relieves the almost insatiable itch that accompanies a scabies infection. However, anecdotal evidence suggest that it will burn your skin if you use it in an undiluted form. Following is how you apply the treatment:
- Take one tablespoon of olive oil and add it to 4 tablespoons of virgin coconut oil. If you cannot get hold of any coconut oil, you may replace it with olive oil, however the treatment will lose a bit of its potency as the lauric acid in coconut oil makes it a strong anti-bacterial in its own right.
- Apply this mixture to the affected area and let the skin absorb it naturally.
Your condition should improve within two weeks.
Yes, the humble onion, which is a staple in most kitchens around the world can cure a scabies infection as well. This is because of a couple of reasons:
- Onions contain quercetin, which is a known analgesic that will relieve the symptoms of an itch.
- Onion is also extremely rich in organosulfur compounds, which will directly attack and eliminate the scabies parasite.
There are a few ways by which you can use onion to treat scabies:
- Take a piece of onion, and chop it up in a few whole pieces and put it in a bowl. Sprinkle some salt on it and then cover the bowl. Apply the resulting juice using a cotton ball on the affected area.
- Take an onion and put it in the mixer and turn it on for a few seconds. Take the resulting paste in muslin cloth and squeeze all the juice out. Apply it on the inflamed area.
- Take about 8 onions and boil them in a quart of water. Let the water cool down to room temperature and apply it on the infected area.
Bleach contains chlorine, which is a known disinfectant that will kill the mite that is causing the infection in the first place. Following is how you apply the treatment:
- Take a large container. Pour one cup of bleach in it, followed by three cups of water. Mix it thoroughly.
- Take a cotton ball and apply liberal quantities of this solution on the affected area. Let it dry naturally.
- Take a shower afterwards.
Bleach is extremely corrosive in an undiluted form and you should not touch it without diluting it first. Even after you dilute it, it should never reach your eyes and you should not ingest it either. If it reaches your eyes by any chance, rinse your eyes repeatedly with fresh water. If you suffer from any blurred vision then you should immediately visit the emergency room!
Turmeric is an herb with strong anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that can wreak havoc on the scabies parasite and also protects the area against secondary infections. There are several different ways by which you can use turmeric to combat scabies:
- Using Turmeric and Neem Oil:
- Take a 1 tablespoon of turmeric and add a few drops of neem oil to it.
- Mix it thoroughly to form a smooth paste.
- Apply this paste on the affected area and let it dry naturally. This should have about an hour.
- Take a moist piece of cloth and scrape of the dried turmeric paste.
- Take a shower.
- Using Turmeric and Neem Powder:
- Take 1 tablespoon of turmeric powder and one tablespoon of neem powder and mix it thoroughly.
- Add a few drops of water to form a smooth paste.
- Apply the paste and wash it off, the same way it was mentioned in the turmeric and neem oil treatment.
- Using Turmeric and Lemon Juice:
- Take one tablespoon of turmeric powder and add a few drops of lemon juice to it to form a smooth paste.
- Apply this paste on the infection and let it dry naturally. This should take about 1 hour.
- Rinse it off with lukewarm water.
- White Vinegar
White vinegar contains acetic acid, which reduced the pH level of your skin making it more acidic. As mentioned earlier in this article, a slightly acidic pH level is fantastic for your skin but it makes your skin toxic for the scabies parasite, eventually killing it.
Following is how you would use white vinegar to treat your scabies:
- Mix white vinegar and fresh water in a 1:1 ratio.
- Apply the solution to the affected area with a cotton ball.
- Leave it on for about five minutes and then rinse it off with lukewarm water.
This treatment can be applied for up to three times a day. You should notice a visible difference within a few days, with the infection being completely eliminated in two weeks!