Pinworms can be successfully treated with:
- Medicine. Reference Over-the-counter Opens New Window and prescription medicines come in liquid, chewable tablet, and pill forms. Women who are pregnant or breast-feeding and children younger than 2 should not take over-the-counter medicine without first talking to a doctor about the risks and benefits of the medicine.
- Steps to prevent reinfection and the spread of infection, including frequent Reference hand-washing and routine washing of clothes and bedding. These measures are important and helpful even if medicine is not being used.
Pinworms are treated with medicine when:
- Signs and symptoms of pinworm infection are present, such as itching around the anus.
- Pinworm infection of family members and other close contacts is likely.
If severe itching is present, your doctor may prescribe a soothing cream to be applied to the anal area. If complications of pinworm infection develop, additional treatments may be needed.
What to think about
Some doctors suggest treating all close contacts of a person with pinworms even if there are no symptoms. Treating contacts with over-the-counter medicine can help prevent reinfection and the spread of pinworms to other people. This is especially important in households where pinworm infections come and go.
Treatment of all household members may be recommended if someone in the household is pregnant, breast-feeding, or younger than 2. These people may not be able to take pinworm medicine, and their chance of infection may be lower if all other members of the household are treated.
Many doctors suggest a second treatment 2 weeks after the first treatment to kill any adult worms that may have hatched from eggs during that time. Pinworm medicine does not kill pinworm eggs.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference August 30, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
Reference Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics