How To Treat Threadworms
Threadworms are highly contagious and uncomfortable. If it occurs, here is how to treat it.
Threadworms are also known as pinworms. They are tiny and thin and they infect the intestines and colon in humans. There are home remedies for threadworm treatment. Though it can affect people of all ages, it is more common in children because children are more carefree about washing their hands. Threadworms can easily go from person to person. And children just float through their day touching and sharing things. This article treats on how to treat threadworms.
The medical condition associated with threadworm infestation is known as enterobiasis. The human body is the only natural host for this parasite. It happens when a female threadworm lays eggs in the fold of the skin around the anus. And it is easily spread when the infected person scratches the anal area. The eggs can be deposited under the fingernails and infect items such as pillows and clothing.
Symptoms of threadworms
The tricky thing about threadworm is that most people don't even get any symptoms at all. But here are a few symptoms you may experience.
- Itching around the anus is the most common symptom when a person is infected. This gets worse at night time and makes sleeping difficult. The itching is an inflammatory reaction to the worm and her eggs. If the skin breaks due to intense scratching, a secondary infection may follow.
- Though rare, threadworm can migrate to the vagina or urinary tract, causing vaginitis and intense itching. But infection usually goes away on its own.
- There have been reported cases of adult threadworms found in inflamed appendices during operation. But it has not been confirmed whether it's a cause.
How can I be sure I have threadworms?
If you're suspecting that you or your child has threadworms but you're not sure, you can use the tape test to check.
- Tape test is best done in the night during the itching or first thing in the morning before bathing.
- Wrap a piece of cellophane tape at the edge of a tongue compressor. Then stick the side out and place on the skin around the anus to collect egg deposits.
- You may take the tongue compressor to the doctor to put under a microscope and check for threadworms. For children, it may be visible when they pass waste.
- The doctor may ask you to repeat the tape test to increase the chances of seeing the eggs.
How To Treat Threadworms
Here are three home remedies for threadworm treatment.
To help your body push the worms through your intestines, eat a cup of chopped raw carrots at least twice per day. Carrots are rich in fibre and can enhance digestion and promote bowel movement.
Garlic is important for killing any existing threadworm eggs and to stop females from laying more eggs. You can apply garlic as a salve or swallow it in small amounts. You can swallow through mediums like bread or spaghetti. Also, it is okay to swallow alone.
Chop the garlic and grind into a paste to create a salve. Add a small amount of petroleum jelly or other ordinary oil and mix well. To apply as a salve to anus, dip a clean cotton swab and apply. If the area has a burning sensation, or you have sensitive skin, broken skin, or haemorrhoids, do not use.
The antibacterial and antiviral properties of coconut oil can help you clear threadworm infection. There are two ways to use coconut oil. The first is to swallow a teaspoon of coconut oil every morning, and then before you go to bed, rub some coconut oil into the affected area.
How can I prevent threadworms?
Threadworms are highly contagious. Below are a few measures to prevent future contraction.
- You should wash all linens and bedding in hot water
- Wash your hands regularly.
- Try and keep your fingernails short. Avoid biting your nails.
- Wear tight underwear.
- Wash your underwear in hot water each day.
- Mop the floor in your living spaces.
- Regularly change your sleepwear.
Threadworms are so infectious that if one person gets it in the household, chances are, others might have it even if they are experiencing any symptoms. So treat everyone in the house. If you decide not to use home remedies, albendazole (Albenza) is the most common treatment for threadworms. A single tablet kills the eggs. Doses differ for adults and children under two.