Pinworm Treatment in Montgomery, AL
A pinworm (threadworm) is a tiny, parasitic roundworm that is white in color and lives in the digestive system—particularly the rectum—of humans. Considered one of the most common intestinal worm infections in humans, a pinworm infection most often occurs in school-aged children and is highly contagious, easily spreading from child to child, and from child to family members.
It most often spreads when an infected person scratches the affected area, causing pinworm eggs to become trapped under the fingernails. When these eggs come into contact with other surfaces—like clothing, bedding, toys and other objects—they can survive for weeks. The infection then continues to spread when a person unintentionally swallows or inhales the pinworm eggs living on these surfaces. Once in the intestines, the eggs hatch and mature. Female pinworms then lay new eggs in the folds of the skin of the anus. The cycle of infection then tends to continue along a similar path.
While potentially causing uncomfortable symptoms, a pinworm infection is treatable. To schedule a consultation with a qualified healthcare professional in Montgomery who can provide effective pinworm treatment, call (334) 781-7319 or contact Dr. Ryan McWhorter online.
A pinworm infection may present with no physical signs or can cause much discomfort to those infected. The most common pinworm symptoms in both children and adults include:
- Persistent anal itching
- Sleep troubles (anal itching tends to be worse at night)
- Rash or other skin irritation around the anus or vagina
- Abdominal pain
- Visible pinworms in the stool or anal area
Diagnosing a Pinworm Infection
To confirm the presence of pinworms, your doctor will likely conduct a physical examination of the anus, discuss your symptoms (if any) and will review your medical history. He or she may ask you to perform a tape test at home in which you press clear adhesive tape to the skin around the anus immediately upon waking. The tape is then examined under a microscope by your healthcare provider to see if any pinworm eggs are present. This test should be repeated three days in a row to guarantee the most accurate results.
How to Get Rid of Pinworms
Pinworms can be treated with either prescription or over-the-counter medication which kills the pinworms. Pinworm medication typically requires two doses spaced two weeks apart, although additional doses may be deemed necessary if the infection persists. The first dose kills the live pinworms. The second dose kills new pinworms which have hatched since the first dose. Your healthcare provider may suggest everyone in the same household also receive pinworms treatment to prevent reinfection.
Your healthcare provider may also recommend creams or ointments to soothe irritated skin while the treatment works to kill the pinworms. It is also important to adhere to good hygiene habits and to thoroughly clean the home to help eliminate pinworms which may linger on household surfaces. Your pets cannot become infected with pinworms, so treatment is not necessary.
Fortunately, even though pinworms can be highly discomforting, they post no serious threats to your health and do not carry any disease. The sooner you seek treatment, the sooner you can experience relief. Meet with a healthcare provider in Montgomery who can discuss how to get rid of pinworms with you. Call (334) 781-7319 or contact Dr. Ryan McWhorter online.
Alabama Functional Medicine
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Montgomery, AL 36117
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