Get informed : Sexuality

What is it?
•    Scabies is caused by parasitic mites resembling microscopic insects that get under the skin and lay eggs.

•    Scabies is found mainly in warm and moist areas of the body, like armpits, buttocks, genitals, nipples, breasts, in the folds of skin between the fingers, wrists, ankles and underneath the nails. Scabies doesn’t appear on the face.

•    Scabies can survive for three days outside the human body.


•    Scabies causes intense itching, particularly at night. Red patches and pimples may also appear on the skin.

•    Scabies is very contagious and has been on the rise in the last number of years.

•    A medical examination is required for diagnosis.

•    The symptoms of scabies are visible to the naked eye but it can be difficult to diagnose.

How do you contract it?
•    During sexual contact or by basic, direct contact (skin to skin) with an infected person or through direct contact with contaminated objects (sheets, towels, clothing, personal hygiene articles, etc.).

•    Linens, sheets or toilet seats can also be contaminated and contribute to spreading.

•    Being infected once does not mean you are immune to contracting scabies a second time.
How do you treat it?

•    Scabies is treated by specialized prescription lotions sold at the pharmacy. It’s important to repeat the treatment seven days after the initial treatment in order to kill all the eggs, which have a 7-10 day incubation period.

•    It’s also important to launder any clothing and bedding that were in direct contact with the infected person.

•    Anyone living with the infected person, as well as their partners, should also be treated at the same time.

•    Shaving the affected area is not an effective treatment.

How do you prevent the infection from spreading?

Infected people should avoid any close physical contact during treatment in order to prevent the spread of infection to those around them, and they should avoid sharing their clothing, towels or personal hygiene articles.

How can you protect yourself?
•    Avoid close contact with an infected person until their treatment has been completed.   

•    There is no sure-fire way to protect yourself against scabies because it is transmitted through basic contact with an infected person.

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