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Conditions

Threadworms

Threadworms

If we’re talking worms, then we’re talking parasites – small intestinal parasites, to be precise. It sounds hideous, but the threadworm (or ‘pinworm’) is the most common worm parasite infestation of children in the UK (although, any age can be affected). They are usually passed on through poor hygiene, live about 5-6 weeks in the gut, and then die. But before doing so, the female worms lay tiny eggs around the anus, which leads to itching during the night. The resultant scratching can lead to eggs getting onto our fingers and under our nails, which we may then swallow, beginning the cycle of infestation again. However, threadworms can usually be eradicated with medication and strict hygiene. But if you think humans have it bad, then you should consider grasshoppers, who play host to ‘hairworms’ which essentially brainwash the insects with a cocktail of chemicals that makes them commit suicide by leaping into water. In light of that – an itchy bottom is nothing!

Remember that you should always check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.

If your child is itching down below, they may have thread-worms, check our guide for parents on Embarrassing Bodies: Kids website.

What the Men in White Coats Say

Comments and Questions

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Please note: Unfortunately Channel 4 cannot respond to individual inquiries. If you have any concerns, you can check out NHS Choices, but ultimately it is always best to check with a health professional.

im 14 and have had them since i was 10 like they went for a year btut i caught them of my little couisn and i just want rid! its so itchy and annoying and sometimes theres hundreds and sometimes theres like 2 :( i feel so disgusting and dirty :p





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I have a parasite in the blood which I'm not sure if it is these worms I had scabs that came up that we're itchy when I went to itch them they sank in.when I did get one there were worm like things on inside. I noticed they were in my blood as only got scab if there was a cut / scab. I have done some medical work so took blood to have a look and there is some worm like paracite went to hospital they won't do blood test when I told them symptoms they ref to shrink.





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I am 16 years old and have just found out I have these. I feel really disgusting, and I feel like I can't find a reliable source to tell me whether it's dangerous or not. Are they harmful? Or am I just paranoid? I'd still like to be rid of them, because I don't think anyone likes the idea of parasites living in their gut. I know I have to tell my family (I am aware they might also be infected) but am still really embarrassed and don't know how to tell them. :(





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I am 16 and I think I might have threadworms. I don't have itching but I think I saw one in the toilet. I have lost weight, however I am generally a healthy eater. I have experienced a bloated feeling whilst sleeping flat.I may just be paranoid but some symptoms make sense.





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I am 16 and I think I might have threadworms. I don't have itching but I think I saw one in the toilet. I have lost weight, however I am generally a healthy eater. I have experienced a bloated feeling whilst sleeping flat.I may just be paranoid but some symptoms make sense.





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Well, I've found out I have these nasty creatures, I'm so confused and scared they will hurt me. I have good hygiene, eat normal foods I'm just nervous, maybe worrying more then I actually need to. But I cannot deal with these things. Who is ok with worms living inside them?! Ugh I found them when I was littler around 10 but I had thought it was because I had eaten fish, and fish had paracites. But nope, havnt eaten fish I a while. So I did some research and scared the living hell out of myself in doing so. I just need help.





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Have had this problem for 6 years now I fell really dirty but I am not it doing my head as I get woken up evey night with iching it doing my head in my gp said I diebet yeh right as I am not they just don't seem to care what I do and how so u get rid of them forever as I am so sore down stairs front and back





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I am exactly the same just not diabetic and want rid of them

I have been informed by my child's school that there a child in hid class had had worms and for us to be aware. I have checked my childs stools and could not see anything yet. Today and tonight my child has been scratching his bottom cheeks and the top of his thigh. I have had a look and could not see anything. Would thus be a sign or would the itching be concentrated to the actual anus? Not sure if I am just being patanoid.





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I'm 30 and suffered most my life. I've not had any symptoms for around 5 years . I noticed my 4 year old scratching and immediately knew what was wrong but never found any evidence and he had a lot of eczema on his bum, so just thought it was paranoia until he had a bit of an accident. To my horror I noticed one of these worms and now a few weeks later I'm back to square one. I believe they are making me seriously ill due to being anxious depressed and considerably underweight! I don't want my 2 children to suffer all their lives like I have x





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I'm 14 and i have worms,I know this because i went to the toilet and i saw many in my stools and they were alive.Occasionaly i also get them in my vagina when i wipe,it makes me cringe that this is going on inside of me.I used Ovex yesterday and it has helped as i couldnt see anything in my stools today,but last night i wiped my vagina and saw around 2 .I also randomly get them in my pants stuck in a sticky discharge,i cant get to many places now so what are some ways to get your mind off it at night or get rid of it completely.





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I too am 14 and have had worms for about four days now. It does not affect me during the day however in the evenings it drives me insane with all the itching. Itching is very stressful and probably worse than pain, especially if you know you can't scratch it. I suggest showering at night, then applying Vagisil or Savlon around and inside your anus and vagina, to soothe the itching. You may have to do this several times during the night if it disturbs you from sleeping, but you'll eventually fall asleep and wake up free of itching until the next night. Try and distract yourself by listening to music, or just will yourself to fall asleep for a blessed end to the itching. Treatment should be available over the pharmacy counter, although good hygiene must be maintained in order to prevent another infection. If you find it embarrassing, talk to a close family member about what you're experiencing and they will offer support and further suggestions.





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It looks like no one else has asked this question, so please fill in the rest of your details below.





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Content supplied by NHS Choices

Threadworms (Enterobius vermicularis) are small worm parasites that infect the intestines of humans. Read More »

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