What is it?
Pinworm infection is a common intestinal infection that can cause perianal itching, disturbed sleep, irritability and, sometimes, infection of the scratched skin around the anus. The infection can also be present without symptoms.
Mode of transmission
Transmission is from one person to another; pinworms from animals are not transferable to humans.
Means of prevention
- Maintain personal hygiene.
- Wash hands before eating or preparing food and after using the bathroom.
- Keep nails short; don't bite nails.
- Keep from scratching bare anal area.
- Bathe every morning; preferably by showering.
- Make frequent changes to clean underwear and nightclothes.
- Change bed linens frequently, preferably after bathing.
Treatment of persons infected with pinworms
- Take medication as prescribed.
- Change underwear and sheets daily for 3-4 days after treatment.
- Wash sheets and underwear daily, using the "hot" cycle in the washing machine for 3-4 days after treatment. Heat destroys the eggs of pinworms.
- Clean or vacuum living and sleeping areas daily for 3-4 days after treatment.
- Have all family members treated at the same time as the infected person.