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Scabies: Using Medicines

Scabies: Using Medicines

Topic Overview

To successfully treat scabies , all members of an affected household must be treated at the same time. Follow these instructions when using medicine to treat scabies:

  • Take a lukewarm (not hot) bath or shower. Dry off well with a towel. Do not share this towel with others.
  • Apply the medicine according to your doctor's directions. In most cases, the medicine is a cream or lotion that is applied in a thin, even layer over the whole body from the neck down.
  • On infants and children, apply the medicine to the scalp, face, and neck as well as the rest of the body. Avoid the area around the mouth and eyes.
  • Trim fingernails and toenails short. Brush the medicine thoroughly under the fingernails.
  • Leave the medicine on for as long as your doctor recommends.
  • Wash the medicine off with lukewarm, soapy water, and dry the skin.
  • Put on clean clothing, and change your bed linens. Wash all clothes, bedding, and towels used in the 3 days before you or your child started treatment. Use hot water, and use the hot cycle in a dryer. Another option is to dry-clean these items. Or seal them in a plastic bag for 3 to 7 days.

Do not apply the scabies medicine more often than is recommended by your doctor.

Related Information

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
Current as of March 12, 2014

Current as of: March 12, 2014

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

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