How to Get Rid of Pinworms

How to Get Rid of Pinworms

How to Get Rid of Pinworms

Part 1 of 2: Home Treatment

Wash your hands frequently.[1

] Pinworm infestations are highly contagious, so immense cleanliness is required to prevent the infestation from becoming more severe or spreading to others.

  • If you passed the parasite to someone else, it is possible to become re-infested from that person even after you rid yourself of the worm.
  • Wash your hands after every bathroom trip, before eating, and before preparing food. Scrub your hands and fingernails for a full minute at minimum with each washing.
  • Washing with soap and water can help remove pinworm eggs that get stuck to your hands after wiping yourself in the restroom.
  1. Clean your clothes and bedding.
  2.  Pinworm eggs can get on your clothes and bedding, especially as you sleep, which makes it vital that you wash these items in hot water and laundry detergent on an almost daily basis.
    • Underwear, pajamas, pants, and towels should be washed daily for the duration of the infestation. Bedding should also be washed daily unless an anti-parasite medication is taken, at which point it only needs to be washed on the first day of treatment and every three days or so after that.
    • Dry all items in a heated dryer. Heat is more effective at killing pinworms than other methods of drying.
    • Do not fan the bedding. Fanning sheets and blankets as you change them can send pinworm eggs into the air, causing them to contaminate other surfaces and people.
    Bathe daily.
  3.  Take a hot shower at least once a day while the infestation continues. Use body wash or soap as you bathe as opposed to merely rinsing yourself with water.
    • Pay special attention to the skin around the anus so that you scrub away any pinworm eggs.
    • Showering in the morning may allow you to get rid of more pinworm eggs than showering at night.
    • Showers are better than baths because they reduce the risk of spreading pinworm eggs to other parts of your body. Pinworm eggs that are washed off into bath water can find their way to your mouth or other areas of the body and cause complications.
  4. Scrub any potentially contaminated surfaces. 
  5. The bathroom should be thoroughly cleansed during the infestation.
    • Toilet seats should be cleaned daily with toilet bowl cleaner.
    • Counters and other surfaces should be cleaned at least once or twice a week.
    1. Stop scratching.
    2.  Even though pinworms usually cause immense itching, you should avoid scratching the anus area as much as possible.
      • Scratching infested areas may cause the pinworm eggs to get trapped under your nails. When this happens, you are more likely to complicate your own infestation or pass it to someone else.
      • Wear gloves at night to prevent yourself from scratching in your sleep.
      • Cut your nails short. This way, even if you do scratch on accident, it is less likely that the pinworm eggs will get lodged beneath the nail.
    1. Add probiotics to your diet.
    2. [2] Eat probiotic-rich foods, like yogurt, or take probiotic capsules.
      • Probiotics stimulate healthy bacteria in your digestive system, creating an unwelcoming environment for pinworms in the process.
      • Adding 1 cup (250 ml) of yogurt to your daily diet or taking two capsules of probiotic supplements per day should add a significant amount of probiotics to your digestive system.
      • Always follow label instructions when purchasing and using probiotic supplements.
        1. Eat more garlic. 
        2. Garlic works as a natural, though mild, vermifuge or anthelmintic and helps the body to expel pinworms and other intestinal parasites.
          • Increase the amount of garlic seasoning you use on your food.
          • Alternatively, you could take a garlic capsule two or three times daily for several days while you are infested with pinworms. You can do this safely for several weeks.
        1. Reduce your sugar intake. 
        2. Minimize the amount of starchy or sugar-rich products you consume, especially those with high amounts of glucose.
          • Pinworms consume sugar to produce energy. The more sugar these parasites have available to them, the stronger they will be and the faster they will breed. By cutting out as much sugar as possible, you can effectively starve them to death.

        Part 2 of 2: Medical Treatment

        1. Purchase an over-the-counter pinworm medicine
        2. . Look for an oral medication containing pyrantel pamoate.
          • This anthelmintic agent paralyzes the nervous system of pinworms, forcing them to pass through the system in one's stool.[3]
          • Follow label instructions to determine the dosing amount and frequency. Typically, though, only one dose is required.
        3. 2
          Ask your doctor for a prescription anti-parasite medication.
        4.  Individuals experiencing extreme discomfort or those with moderate to severe pinworm infestation are often treated with a potent anti-parasite medication that wipes out adult pinworms within a week.
          • The two most common anti-parasite medications used to treat pinworm infestations are albendazole and mebendazole. Both of these drugs belong to a class of medicines called anthelmintics. They prevent worms from absorbing sugar, thereby causing them to lose energy and die.[4][5]
          • These drugs may cause mild gastrointestinal upset, including stomach pain and nausea.[6] More severe side effects include sore throat, fever, unusual bleeding or bruising, shortness of breath, and fatigue. If any unusual side effects appear, stop use and contact your doctor.
          • Your doctor may advise against these prescription treatments for patients who are pregnant or under the age of 2 years.
          Request anti-itch cream.
        5. [7] Ask your doctor for his or her recommendation on an anti-itch cream safe for use near the anus. You may receive an over-the-counter or prescription cream.
          • Even though the anti-parasite medication will be enough to kill the pinworms, you may still experience itching after the initial round of medication. This can be both uncomfortable and problematic, since eggs may remain in the system even after all matured pinworms have died off. Scratching can spread these eggs, making the matter worse.
      Prepare to take a repeat treatment
    3. [8] Your doctor may recommend taking a second round of medication two weeks after the conclusion of the first round.
      • Pinworm symptoms may fade or disappear within the first week of treatment, but these medications only kill adult worms. A second round or "repeat" treatment kills any pinworms that hatch from eggs that were not destroyed by the initial treatment.


      • Two tablespoons of vinegar can help to promote healthy gut flora. Have over-the-counter medicine first, then two tablespoons of vinegar sweetened with two tablespoons of the purest possible honey. Mix with a little cold water and then drink. After two weeks, have a bowel cleansing supplement and repeat the vinegar drink.
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