Scabies is very common and anyone can get it. It should be treated quickly to stop it spreading.

Check if it’s scabies

One of the first symptoms is intense itching, especially at night.

A pharmacist can help with scabies

Scabies is not usually a serious condition, but it does need to be treated.

A pharmacist will recommend a cream or lotion that you apply over your whole body. It’s important to read the instructions carefully.

You’ll need to repeat the treatment 1 week later.

Scabies is very infectious but it can take up to 8 weeks for the rash to appear.

Everyone in the household needs to be treated at the same time – even if they don’t have symptoms.

Anyone you’ve had sexual contact with in the past 8 weeks should also be treated.

Things you can do during treatment to stop scabies spreading

See a GP if:

  • your skin is still itching 4 weeks after treatment has finished

Scabies can spread easily

Scabies are passed from person to person by skin-to-skin contact. You can’t get scabies from pets.

People who live or work closely together in nurseries, university halls of residence, or nursing homes are more at risk.

Complications of scabies

Scratching the rash can cause skin infections like impetigo.

Scabies can make conditions like eczema or psoriasis worse.