To successfully treat scabies, all members of an affected household must be treated at the same time. Follow these instructions when using medicine to treat scabies:
Take a lukewarm (not hot) bath or shower. Dry off well with a towel. Do not share this towel with others.
Apply the medicine according to your doctor's directions. In most cases, the medicine is a cream or lotion that is applied in a thin, even layer over the whole body from the neck down.
Look for special instructions for infants and children. Be sure to read and follow all instructions that come with the medicine.
Trim fingernails and toenails short. Brush the medicine thoroughly under the fingernails.
Leave the medicine on for as long as your doctor recommends.
Wash the medicine off with lukewarm, soapy water, and dry the skin.
Put on clean clothing and change your bed linens. Wash all clothes, bedding, and towels that you used in the 3 days before starting treatment. Use hot water, and use the hot cycle in a dryer. Or dry-clean these items. Or seal them in a plastic bag for 3 days.
Do not apply the scabies medicine more often than is recommended by your doctor.
ByHealthwise Staff Primary Medical ReviewerAdam Husney, MD - Family Medicine Brian O'Brien, MD, FRCPC - Internal Medicine Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine Specialist Medical ReviewerJohn Pope, MD, MPH - Pediatrics