Tips for Health

What is Pinworm Infection?

By on July 5, 2012 in Diseases with 0 Comments


What are pinworms? 

Pinworms are small white worms that live in the intestines. Pinworm infection is common in young children and is easily treated.

How will I know if my child has pinworms?

If your child has a pinworm infection, he or she may frequently scratch his bottom. It is also possible that your child will move much in bed at night or can not sleep. The itching is caused by the female pinworm that comes out of the rectum to lay eggs around the anus. The eggs remain in the upper intestine until they hatch. After they hatch, the worms travel down the intestine and then out the anus where they lay more eggs.

Sometimes, you may see tiny white worms (less than 1/2 inch long) in the rear of the child at night or may appear in the feces of children.

How do people get pinworms people?

Pinworms are contagious and spread easily, usually a child to another. Pinworm eggs can be collected on the fingers of children while playing. When children are infected scratch the itch back to them, the tiny eggs can get under the nails of the fingers. The eggs can remain in your child’s skin for several hours. They can survive up to 3 weeks on clothing, bedding and toys. If the eggs are in the hands of his son or his toys, and your child puts their fingers or toys in the mouth, the tiny eggs can enter the body. Children who do not wash their hands thoroughly before eating, and children who suck their thumbs at greater risk.

Although pinworm infections are more common in children of school age, anyone can have them. As children with the infection move through the house, it is possible for eggs to propagate and for other family members can develop an infection. Sometimes, adults breathe in the eggs when they shake the covers. However, this is not very common.

Pets do not spread pinworms, although you may transport their own types of worm.

How do we eliminate pinworms?

Most pinworm infections are mild and easily treated. Your doctor may prescribe a single chewable tablet of a medicine called mebendazole. You take a second tablet around 3 weeks if the infection is cured. Or your doctor may recommend another type of medicine called pyrantel, taken in one dose.

Even if only one child in your family has pinworms, it is often important that everyone in the household are treated with the pinworm medicine at the same time. Here are other steps you can take to remove eggs of pinworms:

  • Wash all sheets, blankets, towels and clothing in hot water home.
  • Carefully clip all the fingernails (which might have worm eggs) and trim.
  • Scrub toys, countertops, floors and other surfaces that the child who is infected touched.
  • Vacuum the carpets.

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