The main symptoms of scabies are burrowing marks, intense itching and a rash consisting of tiny red spots. The itching is often worse at night when the skin is warmer.
Scabies is caused by tiny mites that burrow into the skin. It is spread from person to person by long periods of skin-to-skin contact or through sexual contact. Scabies can rarely be passed on by sharing clothing bedding and towels with an infected person. It can take up to eight weeks for the symptoms of scabies to appear after the initial infection.
Treatments include the application of a cream or lotion that is applied over the whole body then again 1 week later. Scabies is very infectious and everyone in the household needs must be treated the same time, even if they do not have symptoms.
Treatment for Scabies is available through the Minor Ailments scheme.