Children are especially prone to parasitosis because they respect the rules of hygiene less than most adults. In addition, children put their hands in their mouth more often than adults and they are easily distracted and they sometimes forget to wash their hands after using the toilet or before eating. Besides giardiasis, another very common parasitic infection is the pinworm infection also known as enterobiasis .
What are children's pinworms?
Pinworms (Enterobius vermicularis) are some very thin worms (filiform), white, with length of 12.7 mm that live in the human intestine. Every night the adult female of Enterobius vermicularis descends as far as the anus and lays her eggs in the region near the anus. As a result of ther female's migration the skin gets irritated as well as the eggs which are visible only at a microscope and they are wrapped with a very thin sticky fluid that makes the egg to attach easily to any object. The eggs have an ellipsoidal shape with a flat side.
How is the children's pinworm transmitted?
Because both the female's migration and the eggs that are located in the neighborhood of the anus have this irritant effect, the infected person (often children) feel a strong itching and they will tend to scratch, this way the eggs will get on their fingers and under fingernails. Afterwards the child may touch any object that may be food or not. For example he touches the sink's faucet, and after him one of the parents or siblings comes to wash and also reaches the tap. If they do not wash properly and eat with their hands, they are most likely to get pinworm eggs in the food that they will ingest. Children's pinworms begin to develop in the child's intestine and then migrate into the large intestine where they mature and feed on nutrients ingested by the person.
Children's pinworms can be contacted either by direct contact with the hands of an infected person and through contact with infected objects, unwashed food, bedding, underwear, towels or other bath and intimate, even in the air (slowly) or house dust. The eggs that cause children's pinworms are very resisting the external environment and can last up to two weeks if the air is warm and moist.
Symptoms of children's pinworm infection
The symptoms are nonspecific; the child will have as the main symptom itching around the anus. He may also present a rash, sleep disturbance (as night falls the pinworms' female descend and child cannot sleep well because of the itching), but the parent or child can see in the stool or on the underwear or on the bed or while performing the local hygiene the presence of worms. Often the children's pinworm infection can pass unseen, especially as there are cases in which the child self-heals (this situation is most likely to be seen in adults).
Treatment of pinworm infection
The children's pinworm treatment should be expanded to the entire family. It imposes strict rules for hygiene, the changing of sheets at the start of treatment as prescribed by a doctor is mandatory and also after every 2 days, individual use of intimate hygiene products, each family member has his own towel and sponge bath, daily dusting all over the house must be dome using cleaning products, washing all food under running water and also wash hands after using the toilet, before eating or before any situation in which you want to go the hand in the mouth. It is recommended that you have in the bag and also put in the child's bag an antibacterial gel that does not require rinsing (it can be found in pharmacies or supermarkets) or disinfectant wipes. Children must sleep at night in a one-piece pajama so he does not have access to scratch around the anus.
Children's pinworm pictures and images
You can see in the following picture the lifecycle of the pinworm, for more pinworm related pics just visit our picture page.