Intestinal worms are common in children. The dewormer is the treatment that allows them to be eradicated. How do you know if your child has intestinal worms? How are they transmitted? How to treat this parasitosis? You will find in this article all the questions to your answers: definition, symptoms, causes, treatments, in order to protect yourself as well as possible from intestinal worms and protect your child effectively.
What is this parasite?
In children, the parasite responsible for intestinal worms is usually pinworm, a species of parasitic worm whose scientific name is Enterobius vermicularis. It is estimated that one in four children aged 3 to 8 will be affected at least once in their life by pinworm infection.
Intestinal worms: what are the symptoms?
The characteristic signs of an intestinal worm infestation are:
a) itching in the anus (especially at night) and scratching lesions.
b) stomach aches.
c) nausea and vomiting.
d) restlessness or irritability.
e) trouble sleeping (insomnia from itching).
f) vulvovaginitis in girls (the worms pass from the anus to the vulva and cause an infection).
g) urinary tract infection.
h) enuresis (“bed wetting”).
These symptoms appear when the worm infestation is heavy. Pinworm infection can remain asymptomatic when contamination is minimal.
How to diagnose?
The child himself or one of the parents often notices the presence of intestinal worms by discovering small white worms in the underwear, around the anus or in the stool. To confirm the diagnosis, the doctor may order an anal scotch test. It consists of applying a piece of transparent tape to the anus in the morning upon waking up before washing, leaving it for a few seconds before removing it. This test collects the eggs of the parasites and then examines them in the laboratory.
Deworm to eliminate intestinal worms
If pinworm infection is confirmed, the doctor prescribes antiparasitic treatment based on deworming drugs, most often containing the active ingredients flubendazole (Fluvermal) or albendazole (Zentel). The treatment is done in a single dose, to be repeated once twenty days later. As this parasitosis is very contagious, people living under the same roof as the child are advised to take the treatment as well. In addition, all objects potentially contaminated by the parasite must be cleaned: bed linen, towels, toys, clothes, etc.
How to protect your child against intestinal worms?
The contamination is done by ingestion of the worms by the child who puts his fingers or infested objects in the mouth. Thus, children who suck their thumbs or bite their nails are more likely to be infected with intestinal worms. Once ingested, the eggs hatch in the stomach then the larvae migrate to the intestines and reproduce in the anal area before being evacuated in the stool.
To prevent your child from becoming infected or infecting others:
i) take care that the child does not bite his or her nails.
ii) wash their hands regularly and systematically after going to the toilet and before meals.
iii) regularly clean his clothes, his or her bed linen (at 60 ° C to kill the eggs) and his or her room.
iv) change his or her underwear every day.
v) cut his or her fingernails short.
vi) ventilate your room regularly (these parasites do not like light, like dust mites).
vii) do not use the towels or cutlery of an infected person.
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