Pinworms: Treatment & Prevention

Pinworms: Treatment & Prevention

Pinworms are small white worms as thin as a thread. They are around half-inch long and can be in your child’s stool or around the anus.

These worms live in the intestine. The adult female worm crawls outside the infected child’s anus and lays eggs in the surrounding area. This activity causes itching and discomfort. The worms can even move to the vagina of a female child. They can also causes sleep disturbances, abdominal pain and associated with poor appetite.

Surprisingly, pinworms grow in a human body, but eggs can survive outside the body for about 2 to 3 weeks. They can be found on the toilet seat, bed linens, and at the play areas of the child as well.

Though pinworms are harmless, but undoubtedly annoying and can spread to others very easily.

How is the infection spread?

When the child scratches their anal area, tiny eggs get stuck on the fingers. So when the child uses its fingers to eat something, these eggs are again swallowed. This way, an infection caused by pinworms spreads quickly. It can also spread indirectly through contaminated food, clothes and bedding.

How to Treat Pinworm Infection?

Your pediatrician will prescribe certain medications that the child can take as per prescription. Your doctor may treat the other family members also for the same as this infection spreads quickly.

How to Prevent Reinfection and Spreading of Pinworms?

  • Handwashing is helpful to stay away from infection. Ask your child to keep washing his hands often throughout the day. Moreover, other family members should also practice this hygiene habit.
  • Keep your child’s fingernails clean and cut.
  • Ensure that your child bath daily with fresh and clean water.
  • Ask your child to clean the anus properly with fresh water after a bowel movement and while bathing.
  • Promptly wash bed linens, towels, and underwears thoroughly with detergent and water.
  • Wash food items like vegetables and fruits properly before consumption.

When to call your doctor

  • If you see pinworm infection is reoccurring frequently
  • If you see your child’s anal area swollen and red.

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