Treating Pinworms

Question

I have 3 children. In the last 2 years the same child has been infected with pinworms 3 times. We belong to a family medicine group. The first doctor elected to treat the whole family, but the 2nd and 3rd time I had to request this from different doctors. My question is, does the medicine to treat this infection hurt the family members who are not suffering from this gross infestation? Also, could the worms or eggs live dormant in my daughter or could she be a carrier? Or is there such a thing as a carrier?
Centreville, Virginia

Dr. Greene's Answer

When I was a young boy, I used to have a creepy-crawler set. I delighted in making these little jiggling critters. I found particular joy in trying to make other people shudder when they saw the various worms and bugs that I had created. Although we adults often shudder at pinworm infections, most kids don’t have this same gut response.

What Are Pinworms?

The pinworm, or Enterobius vermicularis, is one of the most common parasitic infections of humans. Somewhere between 10% and 40% of children have pinworms at any given time (Pediatric Consult, Williams and Wilkins 1997). The infections are usually limited to children below the age of twelve.

The adult pinworms are white and measure less than one-half inch long, with the diameter of a strand of thread. These tiny roundworms are quite complex. Like us, they have mouths, throats, and gastrointestinal tracts. Like us, they have nervous systems. The females have a vagina, a uterus, and ovaries. The males have a testicle, vas deferens, seminal vesicle, and ejaculatory duct. They eat, drink, pee, poop, and reproduce sexually.

The adult worms live in the colons (large intestines) of human children and apparently feed on human fecal matter.

When an adult male and female worm copulate, each female pinworm produces about 10,000 fertilized eggs. At night, the pregnant female migrates from the colon, out through the child’s anus and onto the skin of the buttocks. There she violently expels all of her eggs and then dies. Some of the eggs become airborne and land elsewhere in the child’s room, but the great majority of the fertilized eggs stay on the skin of the child’s buttocks. The eggs mature within six hours of being laid.

The adult worms and the eggs on the skin of the buttocks can cause intense itching in the child. When the sleeping child scratches, the eggs often get on the fingers and under the fingernails. If the child then sucks his or her thumb or otherwise brings his or her hand to the mouth (perhaps while eating breakfast), the pinworm eggs are swallowed. Usually, they hatch within the small intestine and mature there. When they become adults they move to the colon where they take up residence. The entire life cycle lasts four to six weeks.

Occasionally the story goes a little differently. Sometimes a child can inhale airborne eggs and become infected that way. Every now and then the eggs will hatch on the skin of the buttocks, and the immature larvae will crawl back through the anus, up into the rectum and eventually arrive in the colon. Also, the eggs can hatch on the skin of girls and the larvae crawl into the vagina instead of the rectum. This happens in up to 20% of girls with pinworms (Nelson’s Textbook of Pediatrics, Saunders 1996). The vaginal pinworms usually die out with no outside help.

Pinworm Symptoms

Most children with pinworms have no symptoms at all. In the same way that many bacteria live in our intestines without making us sick, pinworms can live happily in our intestines without causing any problems (Parasitic Diseases, Springer-Verlag 1982). Since the pinworm almost always stays in the gastrointestinal tract (or vagina), there is usually no systemic illness.

Some children, however, develop nighttime itching of the skin around the anus. For a small number of these children, the itching can be quite intense. The girls who develop vaginal pinworm infections often develop vaginal itching and sometimes a vaginal discharge. However, attempts to link pinworm infection to bed wetting or grinding of the teeth have been unsuccessful.

Stool and blood tests are not very helpful in diagnosing pinworms. Seeing a worm clinches the diagnosis. Check your child’s skin with a flashlight during the night and first thing in the morning. Look for white, wiggling threads. If it’s not wiggling, it’s probably just lint. Occasionally a wiggling worm will be seen on the surface of a stool. Pinworms are so common that children with nighttime anal itching are often treated without any lab test at all. The classic diagnostic tool is to apply a piece of transparent tape to the skin near the anus first thing in the morning. This tape can then be attached to a glass slide and examined under a microscope for the presence of eggs. Your doctor can supply you with a pinworm lab kit, if necessary.

Treating Pinworms

Treatment is with a single dose of an anti-pinworm drug such as albendazole (Albenza), or pyrantel pamoate (the active ingredient found in Reese’s Pinworm Medicine, which is available over the counter). Most children and adults experience no side effects (use of these drugs in children less than two years old is limited). Hives or other allergic rashes have been reported only rarely. Very rare cases of convulsions have occurred.

This medicine kills the worms 95% of the time but does not kill the eggs. Hence, retreatment in two weeks is a good idea. Doing this is almost 100% effective at eradicating the pinworms. Girls with vaginal itching alone do not necessarily need treatment since the problem will often disappear on its own.

Physicians disagree about whether or not to treat all family members. Often treating the infected child alone will get rid of the infestation. Anyone who sleeps with the child, or any family member or friend with itching should be treated. In stubborn cases, it’s a good idea to treat all family members regardless of symptoms.

It is certainly possible that your daughter is an asymptomatic carrier. In any case, reinfections with pinworms are quite common.

There are no differences in pinworm infections on the basis of race or socioeconomic class. Neither is pinworm infection evidence of poor hygiene. This is a very easily transmissible infection that is very common in children. It is easily spread at home, school, or daycare (pets, though, have no part in the pinworm story). Since most kids experience no ill effects whatsoever, extreme measures to treat pinworms are not wise.

I usually recommend trimming the fingernails, scrubbing the hands (after awakening, before meals, and after toileting) and machine washing the bedding on the treatment day. These hygiene measures have never been proven to help at all, but they still seem like a good idea to me.

Although pinworms are like creepy-crawler bugs in that they are usually harmless (and seem worse than they are!), they are still a real nuisance! I hope you and your family will soon find relief from this bothersome problem.

About the Author
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Dr. Greene is a practicing physician, author, national and international TEDx speaker, and global health advocate. He is a graduate of Princeton University and University of California San Francisco.
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My first day free of itching, I am just recording here what preceded it. Perhaps, I missed an important event or the worms decided to have a nap. I took ~2 glasses of red wine, chewed on ~100 ml of pumpkin seeds, a carrot or two. I took a hot shower after feeling the itch, washing the anus and the crotch thoroughly for ~10 min with soap, even bending and opening the anus to the shower’s hot stream to get some hot water inside. I changed the underpants, socks, shirt and pants. I felt more itching in half hour, took another shower and changed the underwear, pants etc. again. I remember feeling a relief as the itching disappeared. I was brave enough to have some non-acidic food: a random piece of whole-grain bread, a ready-made guacamole mix, bruschetta (italian style spicy tomato salad, also ready to eat). I had an itch-free night of sleep. Continuing my not-so-fasting diet of wine, bread, guacamole and bruschetta today.

Thank you! The article is very well written; clear, accurate and easy to understand. I had some problems with parasites. 😮 It is often a waste of time to try and find eggs in stools as they are extremely difficult to detect. Best for me is just to treat with Albendazole or Mebendazole (Vermox). I got them from “NOWORM247” (just search on Google) to save $$❤️ . Albendazole and vermox are broad spectrum antihelmintics and most likely to be effective. Your article helped me a lot to be free from parasites forever! Thanks!

Hello, has there any research been done on pinworm resistance to medications? I am nearing a year of having had them, and I won’t go into how this infection has ruined my life to its last bit, but I have tried Mebendazole and Albendazole and both drugs have been utterly ineffective. Not that the symptoms reemerged – they never went away to begin with, so we’re not talking plain reinfestation. I don’t know what to do at this point. Pyrantel pamoate is not sold in my country. Or rather it is, but only in pet medications. Mebendazole and Albendazole are the only two drugs I can use, and they do absolutely nothing. Hence, I feel forever doomed. I keep reading stories on the Internet of people who say they’ve pinworms for 5, 10, 12 years, and I am very very afraid I will be one of them, simply because the drugs do not work. Preventing reinfestation with 100% accuracy is impossible, as I live with my parents, and they are unwilling to properly clean all their clothing. Meds would have been the only option, but they don’t work. It’s a vicious cycle I don’t know how to escape. In the meantime I’ve isolated myself from the whole of the world, because I *do not* want to infect anybody else.
I am seriously considering taking cat drugs just so that I give another active substance a try, namely pyrantel pamoate (which is also the active substance of Reese’s). But it’s hard to convince myself I’ve reached such a low point in my life. Doctor visits have been fruitless, I will not go into that – what matters is that I am positive that I do indeed have pinworms. What would you recommend, please?

Dear Ontheverge,
I too seem to be experiencing a highly resistive form of this “pinworm”, although mine don’t look like the white threads described by most websites. I recently returned from international travel to Honduras, Belize and Mexico on a Cruise ship. I am certain I contracted the parasites while on this tour. I am wondering if you found anything that “seems” to be working. I just yesterday started trying colodial silver and am finding symptoms that appear to be “die off”. I’m getting stomach cramps and lots of painful gas, plus the worms that are coming out look to be dead. Even so, the nighttime itching persists..HORRIFFIC!
My next attempt is to get the help from my Primary Care Doctor to get a referral to an infectious disease doctor, so far I can’t find one that will see me unless i am admitted to the hospital, which is even an option, although I hate hospitals.
If you have found anything that works, would you please contact me?

Dear onthevergeof,

I’m so sorry you’re going through this. Other people have expressed frustration over not being able to rid themselves of pinworms, even after doing all the medical community has suggested.

Are there readers here with help? If so, please chime in. “onthevergeof” needs your help.

Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

THank you for this useful information.

A

I am 17 and I have been having an itchy vagina for a long time now (tickling- itch -slight pain). very worried that it might be pinworms as I have seen mucus- like stringy bits in my vagina for a long time now. I am not sure whether It is just thrush or something like that instead as it is just in my vagina, but these stringy bits don’t really look normal and I’m not sure what to do.

Im really worried about it and have booked an appointment with my doctor for a couple weeks time. If the doctor took a vaginal swab, would this be enough to diagnose the pinworms?

please help!

Dear A,

Sorry you’re going through this. Yuck.

Making an appointment with your doctor is the best next move. She should be able to diagnosis this and get you help right away. It’s unfortunate that you have to wait two weeks to see here.

Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

I’m an older adult now but I remember as a child my mom used to give us kids a teaspoon of sugar with 3-4 drops of turpentine in it. I know, I know. Turpentine is poison, even a skull & crossbones on the label so I always wondered why mom gave this to us knowing it was poison. Since it didn’t kill us or make us sick, I assumed that such a small amount of Turpentine isn’t dangerous and is effective at killing worms and their eggs. My mom, grandma, and other relatives all practiced this. We had to take it and would burp and taste the awful Turpentine for several days afterward and then it went away. As far as worms go, as a kid, I never knew if I had any or not, don’t recall ever seeing any. My mom gave us this treatment once a year until we were near our teen years. Seems she only gave that to us when we were little. I hated it. The taste was awful. I always wondered why mom was giving us poison to cure something. I would not recommend this treatment to anyone and certainly would not give it my children.

What are your thoughts on this? Was it a good way to kill and/or prevent the worms or was she old school stupid and likely could have seriously hurt us?

Dear Roger,

I’ve never heard of this treatment. Certainly, some of the things we use in medicine now are very harmful in large doses. Tylenol, for instance, can be deadly in large doses.

Has anyone else heard of this “treatment”?

Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

To treat pinworm infection, your doctor may recommend over-the-counter pyrantel pamoate (Reese’s Pinworm Medicine, others) or prescribe medication to all members of your household to prevent infection and reinfection.

Magazin,

You’ve hit on a key point — prevent reinfection!

@MsGreene

Reading the comments and trying to figure out why these treatments aren’t working for me have been enlightening… Truthfully, I have began looking at other sources for these life changing nuisances keeping me up at night and irritating me throughout the day.
I took Pin X, as these days in the good ol’ US of A we cannot get medenbazole (or Vermox) without a prescription and even then at $800 a pill. That price tag alone will have anyone here flagging. Just imagine my grandmother bought mebendazole at a few bucks a bottle and dosed me as a kid because we I played outside with no shoes. $800 per pill is a true shame really.
But onto more encouraging things… So, the Pin X sorta worked (or in my case the Walgreens generic version which I will call Pin X for ease of communication). In the morning, before eating anything, I drank the banana flavored goop at the dosage specified in the directions. You’ll dose yourself by body weight; there is a nice chart in the box to help you on your way. Fairly soon after taking the Pin X, my stomach felt different (maybe calmer) and much later that day my itching was cut down by quite a lot, but not completely gone.
Since I had read someplace that the pyrantel pamaote only paralyzes the worms and doesn’t kill them, I drank the salt-water flush laxative at midnight of that same day in order to flush them from my system before they “woke back up”. The laxative was the key to my lasting comfort. I haven’t believed much in flushes and cleanses but things change. I did the salt-water flushing thing wherein I drank a specified amount of pink sea salt and water solution that I learned from my parents friends some years ago
Soon after completing the flush and still so puzzled why I got these in the first place, I turned to look for answers and found a few things that are worth mentioning here. 1. If you have a pinworm infection that does not respond to antihelminthics (pinworm meds), you might be dealing with something else the closely resembles a pinworm infection (i.e. fly larvae) I found this literature about fly larvae infections being mistaken for pinworms in more than one case in 2012 and 2016:

http://medind.nic.in/iau/t12/i3/iaut12i3p332.htm

https://www.armytimes.com/news/your-army/2016/08/17/army-refutes-claims-of-massive-parasite-outbreak-at-fort-knox/

In the cases covered by, http://medind.nic.in/iau/t12/i3/iaut12i3p332.htm, “The nearest to a cure, presently, is colonic irrigation using PEG. It helped our patients to flush out the larvae. Purgatives also will have the same effect. [2]” This roughly translates to a strong laxative used in conjunction with irrigation of the colon.
I didn’t do the PEG and Colonic, but I may if things get like they were again…

The dermatologist missed my parasite diagnosis.
I’ve had pin worms for 9 yrs. I’m a RN, had to go on SSID due to open wounds
It’s freaking me our. I’m on my 4 th treatment, I still have pin worms

ive had colon OP, I WASNT DIAGNOSED

TERESA

Teresa,
Millions of us in America and worldwide are suffering. NOBODY can get a positive test, even though we are pulling out 1,000’s of FEET of rope worms, pin worms, round worms, its an infestation. Once you learn that drs are not trained to treat parasites, nor are they ALLOWED to, the alopathic medical religion standard of care is designed to kill you. Parasites are how they make their money, and they are the cause of all disease, but they only promote the growth of parasites. Everything you need to heal yourself is grown on this planet. Look into HEALING AUTISM with Kerra Rivera, she heals people with worms.

So, it is okay to give a second dose of Reese’s pinworm medicine to a child if they have come back 2-3 months later? It’s not going to harm them?

Hi Ashley,

Dr. Greene says, “Treatment is with a single dose of an anti-pinworm drug such as albendazole (Albenza), or pyrantel pamoate (the active ingredient found in Reese’s Pinworm Medicine, which is available over the counter). Most children (over two years old) and adults experience no side effects. One dose of this medicine kills the worms 95% of the time but does not kill the eggs. Hence, retreatment in two weeks is a good idea. Doing this is almost 100% effective at eradicating the pinworms.”

Thus if the worms come back, it’s likely your child was one of the 5%. So sorry! One more treatment at this time will be the same as starting over, since you’ll now be killing adult worms again, and there may be eggs left.

I hope that helps.
Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

I’m 18 f from Canada and I have pinworms. We are now the 23rd of December 2018. I had taken the medication the 19th at 8pm. I have noticed a change. I can feel the pinworms some times but not much. I have a lot less itching but I have a white discharge or white in general when I check my underwear. Also. My stools are green. Do you think it’s possible the the medication will affect my stools or it’s what I ate? And how long do wait to have sexual intacourse with my boyfriend?

Hi im a 15 ,last month i found out that i have so i freak out ,and told my mom about it.my mom and dadis divorce and i live with my dad.so, it hard but i got the medicine and clean my bed ,mopped the floor ,washed my hand regularly.and after taking three 400g of albendazole the symtoms doesnt go away for a few day,but it eventually goes away.so, i didnt took the second treatment. But after one month i felt a slight itch but didnt bother with it ,a few days later i knew i had pinworm.i took a flashlight and look into the toilet
And saw my worst nightmare small moving thread.now,ive taken another three 400g for three days.the doctor said i dont need to take a second treatment .but my mom told me to take it after a week ,and one more time after that week.and two week ,then one month ,after that she said i should deworm myself every three months.so can i do that ? Will it reoccurs again ? Im so scared, i cant sleep nor want to eat because of fearing that it would get me reinfected.what should i do ????!!!!

Go buy some fresh pineapple and garlic and eat as much as you can for three to four nights before bed. Pineapple kills parasites eat eat eat

The second does makes sense — to kill the eggs. I think your mom is being obsessive to do more than that. You need to eat!

I am 15 years old, and i just found out last week that i have pinworms. I don’t know how long i had them and i flipped out when i saw a white worm on my rectum. I tried telling my mom but she doesn’t think i have worms. Please help…

Hi Amelia,

Sorry, you’re going through this.

Dr. Greene says, “Stool and blood tests are not very helpful in diagnosing pinworms. Seeing a worm clinches the diagnosis. [Using a mirror] check [the area around the anus] with a flashlight during the night and first thing in the morning. Look for white, wiggling threads. If it’s not wiggling, it’s probably just lint. Occasionally a wiggling worm will be seen on the surface of a stool. Pinworms are so common that children with nighttime anal itching are often treated without any lab test at all. The classic diagnostic tool is to apply a piece of transparent tape to the skin near the anus first thing in the morning. This tape can then be attached to a glass slide and examined under a microscope for the presence of eggs. Your doctor can supply you with a pinworm lab kit, if necessary. Remember, though, that these eggs are infective!”

It would be smart to get data for your mom. If you do have pinworms, they won’t go away unless you treat.

I hope that helps,
Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

im jessy 20years old.
i am in periods, around at 3am i got severe itching in my vagina. so i went to washroom changed my pad and get back to my sleep. But i cant sleep coz of severe itching in my vagina again i went to washroom and i washed my vagina and saw a small worm on my finger..
i really felt nerves screamed and weeped for an hour…..
how to get rid of this?
what i have to do?
is there any necessary to consult a doctor?
its really annoying to have such kind of worms in my vagina…
please help me….

OK so about 15 years ago I had pin worms…I’d had them for bout 5 years. (I’m from a family where I really couldn’t tell my folks about it…there would have been beatings and unbelievable shaming placed on me and I just couldn’t handle that for a medical problem that felt like a minor but gross nuisance to me.) I knew it was pin worms due to some super stealthy studying. Anyway I had them from about the age of 14 to the age of 20 when they suddenly disappeared. (I would have medicated myself but it was a small town and I couldn’t have the pharmacist accidentally spilling the beans to my folks) My question is; could they have gone dormant or something? Should I worry that they might return? I’m much older and wiser now andlive so far from my family that I can purchase any medication I’d like so please tell me if I should worry about a (for lack of a better word) relapse.

Hello,
I am 21 and am unsure if I have pinworms or not. I really need some help, I’m panicking and worrying that I will have them forever based on what I have read on the internet. Here’s my story. I was an assistant kindergarten teacher. Last Thursday, one of my students was diagnosed with pinworm. I am very obsessive compulsive, especially about bugs, so when I heard this I resigned the next day and have not been to work since last Thursday. I immediately began to believe that I have them. I live with my boyfriend, so I figure he must have them as well. Neither of us have seen any worms when wiping, in the toilet, or in our stool. This is gross, but I tried to check my anus in the mirror today and did not see any worms. I bought the medication and we took it on Sunday, I am planning to take it again this Sunday and then the two Sundays after that to be safe.

I have some doubt at this point that he and I have pinworms, because we are not itching as much as other people seem to be. I only saw worms one place that is scaring me. I emptied the trash can and saw a bunch of brown stuff at the bottom, with little white worms inching around in it. I threw the trash can away. The only thing that had been in it were paper towels and some used feminine hygiene products from a week ago. I am thinking either I have them, and they were in the feminine hygiene products (even though I didn’t see them on there when I pulled them out and put them in the trash), or I brought home the eggs and they landed in the trash can and around the house, but maybe I haven’t caught them yet.

I don’t know. What do you guys think? I’m really scared that I’ll never be able to be intimate with my boyfriend again. Please help me.

Thank you for this very helpful page! My nine year old was so relieved after I read her a comprehensive article on pin worms by Dr. Green.
We were both amazed that the worm anatomy is so complex. It’s fascinating!
We have treated once, and will follow up with another egg targeted dose in 2weeks. Thanks!

I really wouldn’t worry – the worms you saw in the trash were probably maggots (fly larvae)…google a pic.

My son gets dewormed every 6 months. In fact we all should occasionally as we all have some worms unfortunately!

The worm meds will kill them :)

I have had pinworms for a couple of years now before realizing what they actually were. i took medicine and it got rid of the problem, but now a 2 months later, they are back,…. what do i do?

Can you have pinworms and tapeworm at the same time? My daughter recently had pinworm and I also started experiences the itchiness symptoms, so I assumed that is what I had too. I also took the pinworm meds, but the itchiness did not go away completely. The itchiness started to subside after the second dose, but I still felt like something was coming out of my anal region. Today I passed a very long wormlike stool, and prior to that my stool looked like there was rice in it (I assumed it was pinworms coming out), so now I’m thinking I could have tapeworm or both. Is it possible to have both tapeworms and pinworms? Ps. I came back from a trip to mexico about a month ago.

Hi Monnie,

What a predicament. You must be beside yourself.

As it turns out, tapeworms are really long (they can be up to 30 feet in length — wow). They are flat and they look like ribbons. However, their bodies are made up of segments, and each segment is about the size of a grain of rice. Perhaps the stool that looked like it had rice in it was the segments of tapeworm.

Tapeworms are rarely found in the US, but if you were recently traveling in an area where they are more common, you could have picked it up there.

I hope that helps.
Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

I am a 13 year old girl and I think I have pin worms I don’t want to tell anyone so how do I get rid of pin worms on my own???

N,

Thanks for writing in.

I know having pinworms feels embarrassing, but it’s very common and you don’t need to be embarrassed. If you can’t talk to your parents (though they would likely be very open and willing to help), consider reaching out to a school nurse, or counselor, or your pediatrician or the nurse at your pediatrician’s office. You’ll likely feel better just having someone to talk to about your situation.

As Dr. Greene says above, “Treatment is with a single dose of an anti-pinworm drug such as Albenza (albendazole), pyrantel pamoate (the active ingredient found in Reese’s Pinworm Medicine, which is available over the counter at your local drugstore), or Emverm (mebendazole).”

I hope that helps,
Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

Recently I took a laxative to help with the pinworms as I heard that helps
Since then I haven’t seen one pinworm and it’s been about a week
Normally, I would see several & especially in my stool
I ordered medicine before taking the laxative and it just came in.
I’m wondering if i should still take the medicine even though I’ve seen no pinworms , or what?
Please reply asap
Thank you

As I have learned a harsh lesson previously by only dosing once and having to sanitize and redoes all over again: it is very recommended to take pin-x or it’s generic form at least twice. Once at the beginning and twice at the two week mark. This is, as said by others in the article, to prevent the eggs that are not killed by the medication to be killed now that they have hatched at the two week mark.
Now, I took a final dose at the 4 week mark just in case any straggler eggs were not killed, but I have been told it is not necessary.

Also, I have found no articles on the internet stating that even bleach will kill eggs but heat treatments do work. I purchased a very high heat steamer and sanitize furniture and toy surfaces when there is an infection. This way I know they are not on surfaces. It creates ‘safe zones’ in the house while you wait out their life cycle durations on the medicine.

I’m 17 and I have pinworms
I can run to the store myself and get them and I am plenty old to know what I should do as far as getting rid of the eggs and making sure that they don’t come back , but my only question is , do I have to be 18 or older to purchase the medication for pinworms? I didn’t figure that I did but I just wanted to make sure before I went and tried. (I don’t have parents so I can’t have them buy the medication)

Hello; we are a family of 5- mom, dad, 15 year old and, 12 year old, and a 7 month old. We are on a second round of meds after the first one 2 weeks ago.

I (mom) still feel and can see the worms at my anus after having had both doses…I am extremely clean and have followed all necessary precautions above and beyond the norm.

Let alone how we even contracted the worms to begin with….I’m at a loss as to why I can still feel the ‘wiggling’ around down there after both doses.

I’ve been washing the area 2x daily, re-wash my hands alone afterwards, and wash my hands incessantly in general. My kids, husband, and I never have our hands down our pants scratching as we don’t ever have that itch feeling….only I feel the wiggling as I’m really sensitive to it.

I’m going mad- am I missing something? Or is this normal and should go away after this second dose a few days ago?

Go get fresh pineapple and fresh garlic and eat as much as you can in an evening. Also take a few shots of strong tequila or whiskey and go to bed. Do for 3 / 4 nights!!
Friends in Columbia say this will kill them!!! I hope this helps! Dr are no help,,, they only want u to take meds that don’t work!! Sad situation!!

I am 52 years old, I have had some sort of parasitic problem for years. I moved into a townhouse and there was bugs coming out of the wall and I poisoned them with my right hand and suddenly my skin has gone the chronic I had the strangest marks all over me I got a cut on my foot and three of these white things came out of me my veins are all swollen And my ears have an infection, I took the chewable tablet, and now my vagina area is itching, none of these little tiny white things that are coming out of my skin or alive when they come out, I’ve had them so long I even pooped blood my intestines are a mess, My stomach, I am so full of these things. I wake up in the morning and I looked at my hand and I see the beginning of these little white things coming out of the veins in my hand in my hand looks deformed from all the veins popping out, I also have Epstein bar and no spleen, I really think I need more treatment is there anything I can do I cannot even Show my arms or legs, and the doctor told me to be very careful I am contagious, and my feet have been numb for years I had an infestation of rats I also worked with animals, I rescued 47 animals, peacocks, chickens, miniature horse, goat, cats, and And a great Pyrenees dog. I’ve had scabies, but for years I have had this problem every time I look in the toilet it there’s always something weird in it. My doctor told me bedbugs, because it appears that something is borrowin and a great Pyrenees dog. I’ve had scabies, but for years I have had this problem every time I look in the toilet there’s always something weird in it. My doctor told me bedbugs, because it appears that something is burrowing. I was actually baker acted and thrown in the loony bin twice for this so I do not tell anybody anymore. My body is becoming the form and there are marks all over my body it’s as if they are traveling through my veins it’s disgusting I can’t even recognize myself anymore. And my teeth are now affected their breaki I was actually baker acted and thrown in the loony bin twice for this so I do not tell anybody anymore. My body is becoming the form there are marks all over my body it’s as if they are traveling through my veins it’s disgusting I can’t even recognize myself anymore. And my teeth are now affected they Are breaking, and the crackling in my ear is actually a bacterial infection, I already have intestinal problems, due to a car accident the seatbelt crushed my intestines so I have Juli are breaking, and the crackling in my ear is actually a bacterial infection, I already have intestinal problems, due to a car accident the seatbelt crushed my intestines so I have ileus. But since I took that pill. I am very concerned about my who Hah ;-). Is there an over-the-counter drug because I am riddled with parasites I have been rescuing animals for years and then I stopped I got so sick I kept telling my mother it’s as if someone stealing my food I was eating everything in sight and I’m doing it again . At one point I went down to 99 pounds And I am fivefoot nine. So I took the chewable tablet and I am on antibiotics for 10 days. I have a constant fever hovering around 100. I wish people had listened to me. I had to save one of my peacocks she almost died from worms. I’ve had a crazy life, , I have rescued so many sick animals and they were totally infected with worms, I ran my own farm and never asked for any money from anybody, in fact animals would just find the farm I had a 6 foot fence and they would jump over or people with throw their animals over the fence and I would fix them. I never wore gloves and a mask or anything . Everybody said I should be sainted LOL, it is so bad I have to take subutext and alprazolam and my heart has become a regular and my blood pressure. And I have constant constipation due to the car accident I did not go to the bathroom for five days, and made it 10 times worse. I tried to pull these things out of my skin when I see them starting and I always break them in half. I am wearing a diaper pad and a tight pair of underwear so I do not infect anybody. Is there another over-the-counter drug I can take. It’s destroyed my skin my teeth my heart. I really wish that I lived with better medical care I live in Florida and a very bad place and all they do is Baker act me. Then I go to the doctor and they actually examined me they don’t do that when you’re in the nut house. They actually said I was going through a drug-induced psychosis, my brother told him a bunch of lies about me he hates me. Before they examined me I was whisked away to the nut house where I could not go to the bathroom and my prognosis from my last intestinal blockage was sepsis and death. Please help me.

T. Christine–scroll down and read my posts–you aren’t alone. Some of us just seem to have a much harder time getting rid of the pw. My theory is that it has to do with your intestinal health, since I have IBS and food sensitivities. I think that I am never successful in clearing them completely, and all it takes is 1 pw to start the cycle all over again.

Can you tell me how old you have to be to purchase the pinworm medication please ?
I’m 17 & I didn’t think you had to be 18 but also not 100% positive so I was just wondering if you could tell me?
Thank you

Hi, I saw something noodlelooking in my stool yesterday. I actually see things like this in my stool all the time. I do have IBS so maybe I’m just not digesting well. I also had spaghetti the day I saw small noodle looking things in my poop. but I’m extremely paranoid about these creatures. I don’t have an itchy anus what so ever, and if I do it’s probably just not clean enough. I feel healthy and I never see any pinworms in my underwear when I wake up in the morning. Am I just paranoid?

I have the miracle cure. Two words. Dietemacous Earth. Mix some into juice or Gatorade and drink once a day for as long as you believe new ones can hatch.

In Austin, TX, where did you buy it? And how much did you put in drinks?

Hi Emily,

Thanks for the tip. I do know the diatomaceous earth you buy at pet stores is not for human consumption. Where did you get yours?

Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

I first took my son to the doctor when he was all itchy and found out it was pinworms almost 3 weeks ago. He took the Reese’s pinworm medicine and it didn’t seem to work because he was still itchy and I still noticed the eggs and worms on his butt in the mornings. I gave him another dose of the medicine a week later like instructed and almost immediately he was better. Itchy bum was no longer for about 4 days. Then the little buggers were back. I have him another dose of the Reese’s as the second round of attack but nothing happened. I asked the pharmacist if I could give me son another dose and he said that would be fine. Nothing happened. I have him another dose of the medicine yesterday, about 5 days later, and he woke with all those worms and eggs again. What else is there to do? My doctor tried giving me a prescription for Vermox but I couldn’t afford the $800 price tag. Why is the Reese’s not working?

Hi Kathy,
Thanks for writing in! I’m sorry to hear it’s been such a persistent battle with the pinworms. This might be an obvious question, but are you changing his sheets and washing any clothes he was wearing while he was infected? Maybe they’re hanging around somewhere?
Hope that helps!
Alexandra (caring helper at drgreene.com, not a doctor)

I just found out that I have a contaminated well with Coliform Bacteria, I have been having this itching around my rectum for a few months. When I was looking up information on Coliform Bacteria, I ran into this pin worm information. My question is, do I need to go to a doctor or can i treat it without a doctor, and if it isn’t pin worms will the over the counter meds hurt me?

Hi Jane,
Thanks for writing in! I’m sorry to hear about the itching. Reese’s Pinworm Medicine can be purchased at the drugstore or follow the link above and buy it online. The treatment is two doses. The second dose is given 2 weeks after the first.

Washing the bedding on the treatment day may help and is often recommended. There’s not a downside to cleaning the bedding on that day, just a little hassle.
Hope that helps!
Alexandra (caring helper at drgreene.com, not a doctor)

My sister is 12 and she’s been complaining how inside of her Anus itches, she said it’s like wriggling a little and how it hurts a little bit time to time, I have no idea whether it is pinworms or not. Please help!!

Hi Tifanie,
Thanks so much for writing in! Dr. Greene says, “Check your child’s skin with a flashlight during the night and first thing in the morning. Look for white, wiggling threads. If it’s not wiggling, it’s probably just lint. Occasionally a wiggling worm will be seen on the surface of a stool.” Also, telling your parents is a good idea!
Hope that helps!
Alexandra (caring helper at drgreene.com, not a doctor)

I had itching in the vaginal area. Just after my monthly cycle. I got informed by my sister-in-law that it might be pinworms in my vagina. Iam scared. Will over the counter drugs taken orally will kill it. Or should i perform any vaginal cleaning methods. If so please mention the procedures.

Hi Roshni,
Thanks so much for writing in! There are many things that can cause itching, so I wouldn’t immediately assume that vaginal itching means you are infected with pinworms. If you’re still experiencing itching that doesn’t go away with normal bathing, it’s probably wise to see your doctor or gynecologist.
Hope that helps!
Alexandra (caring helper at drgreene.com, not a doctor)

Everyone, I feel your agony (and itch). A pinworm infestation is the very worst thing that has ever happened to our family. Unfortunately, we are still dealing with it (round 2). Still, I’m posting our story in case it helps someone else.

A question, first, though–has anyone found anything to help them sleep? Or anything to dull the wiggling/burning feelings at night? I’ve tried Valerian and Melatonin for sleeplessness, both of which work for a bit, but nothing seems to help during the long hours from 2-5am. Oh, and I’ve tried smearing everything from clove oil with garlic to Noxema on myself but none of it helps at all with the sensations. :-( I’m really desperate for relief so I can finally get some sleep.

Ok, our story.

Our entire household has been suffering from this since January of 2016.

Initially it was my daughter, and after she screamed for me to come & see the worms wiggling, I got her the OTC pyrantel pamaoate. We all took it 2 x, did all the protocol (washing bedsheets/clothing daily, vacuuming, cutting nails/frequent hand washing), but it didn’t work. We took it again, and again, and in the meantime, fought with an insurance company that did not want to prescribe the Albenza for me, who was still having symptoms, because none of the stool or tape tests showed worms or eggs.

After about 4 months of this, Albenza was finally approved, and I ended up having to take it for 6 weeks straight. I also took black walnut extract internally for 6 weeks, and digestive enzymes and probiotics inbetween meals. (I tried everything else–pumpkin seeds, diatomaceous earth, garlic, etc. but none of that seemed to help.) I was the only one left with symptoms at that point. During the day I could almost forget, but at night, I would awaken with a start to the wiggles, and then be kept awake all night with itching and burning. The sleeplessness and constant need to wash everything was driving me insane. Around August of this year, I finally started to feel better. Little by little the symptoms decreased, until I was sleeping through the night again! I was so relieved.

And then they came back.

In early November, my daughter started complaining again of itchiness. I treated our whole family instantly with the pyrantel pamaoate, (and myself), and also with Mebendazole. Since then I have been taking Mebendazole once a week, and the other family members have done the 2 week/1 dose at a time thing. We also have been taking a weekly dose of pyrantel pamaoate. But the truly disheartening thing is that this time around, it isn’t only me with the lingering symptoms. My daughter has them as well. We are going to try Albenza again, but I really hate exposing her to all of these nasty chemicals. Especially since it seems that she is being reinfected somewhere (both times she initially felt the symptoms first). I no longer let her go on playdates or sleepovers at anyone’s house, and I’m hoping that along with the Albenza will be enough to help us kick it for good this time.

The worst thing about this for me is the sleeplessness. I’m exhausted all the time. The second worst is the continual need to be so obsessive about washing/cleaning. Also very tiring. And I worry about what this is doing to my little girl, the weird focus, and the stress on us all is crazy.

Lastly, it is infuriating that the medical community cannot do much to help if you have a case that keeps recurring for so long, but their attitudes are often terribly condescending. I went to see an infectious disease specialist back in the spring, before I took the Albenza, and he smirked at me. Told me it was usually a pretty simple thing to cure, if you had proper hygiene, and if we couldn’t, that it was probably psychological. Nice, huh? (Sound familiar to anyone?) While I have no doubt that there are cases where the patient is imagining that his/her symptoms are pinworms, it is patently obvious that it is not the case for our house, nor is it for many, and dare I say MOST houses dealing with this scourge. (I thankfully have a compassionate GP who has encountered the tenacity of pinworms with other patients, so she is supportive, but the reality is that there is only so much she can do.)

The final insult? Albenza is also incredibly expensive in the U.S., folks. The last time it cost me about $600–after insurance–for a 6 week treatment. I am shuddering to think what it will cost this time, especially if my daughter ends up needing it, too.

Know how much it costs for the same treatment in Asia? For a 2 week supply? About $30. So, for a 6 week supply, it would cost about $90. Drug manufacturers are making a killing on us. Which, if they worked, would have been well worth the cost. But here we are again. And this time it might be $600 x 5 of us, if we all need to be treated with the longterm dose. And THAT’s assuming we can all get the prescriptions we need…

Am hoping this final round of Albenza does it for us, I’ll come back to update in the hopes that it helps someone else! Hang in there, everyone! Hope 2017 treats you all much better, and that we kick these little buggers to the curb once and for all!

Hi! Did you ever get rid of them. Going through the same thing and losing my mind.

Sally:

Your story sounds so much like mine. We’ve been dealing with this for a year and a half. Since September 2015. I bleach door handles and knobs, wash all of our clothes in apple cider vinegar, constantly wipe down tablets and phones with Clorox wipes. I wear a mask to strip our beds and wash bedding every single day. My children and I are down to a fitted sheet and a fleece blanket apiece to try to quell these awful things. We have treated and treated and treated and they keep coming back. I’m so stressed out and anxious about it. My son has anxiety attacks every time he feels one and then is terrified to go to school for days after because he is afraid he will feel the crawling all day long. We were recently tested for reinfection and my daughter is the only one who tested positive but I saw one in my son’s rectum. I continue to see them in my stool so I know it is still pw. I am such a mess, I wouldn’t be surprised if my husband didn’t leave me after this mess. He’s the only one who has never had a single symptom. To make matters worse, my children’s grandparents are now showing symptoms, as is my 1 year old granddaughter and her mom and dad and my 19 year old daughter who does not live with us. I fear my life will never be normal and have had to go on anti anxiety meds to cope. These also have horrible side effects. I’m at a loss and have even considered suicide to just be done with this mess. We’ve seen an infectious disease specialist twice and she can do nothing more for us. I did take DE for two months but they still came back. The DE made my children deathly ill. I’m sure it was just die off but they were incredibly sick and it scared me so I discontinued use. I have no idea how we could possibly still have them but have no doubt that we do. We have remodeled and repainted every surface of our home. Replaced mattresses and pillows and couches. We are not trying to sell our house to move out of the community in fear that we are being reinfected at school. I honestly don’t know what else to do. This has been the worst thing I’ve ever dealt with in my life and I my son has Type 1 Diabetes. This has been more traumatic than that. I am desperate for help but your story has given me hope. Thank you.

Is Albeza the same as Albendazole? It’s that expensive in the US? Why?

I’m German and I never paid for medicine. Now I live in Thailand and I cover my own out-patient cost and I’ve just come down with pinworms (yuck). Purchased Albendazole 400mg as Tablets at 28 Thai Baht per Tablet (about 1 USD per Tablet).

Is that the same kind of medicine? Just grossly overpriced in the US? To me… that’s a crime. Anyway, wouldn’t it be possible to order it from Asia? Even I’d be willing to send some over, but I don’t know maybe there’s a law against it.

For the night time itching take a q-tip with a good amount of mentholatum or vicks vapor rub smear it over your anus and push a little inside with the q tip.

I know what you are going through. I first got the itch a few months ago and it seemed to go away after a short time then returned worse around a couple months later. I started going on line and reading about possible causes. Everything pointed to pinworms after I used an anti fungal cream for a week which did nothing. I never saw any visible signs of pinworms checking myself or after going to the bathroom but after talking to my brother about the symptoms he said I definitely had pinworms since he had got them before. I immediately started taking Reese’s pinworm medication. Did the single dose as prescribed. By that night the itch was reduced around 80 percent and through the next night but gradually started to come back by the third night but not to the degree it had been. I then started taking diatomaceous earth a heaping table spoon a day for first couple days then twice a day for a week and one week after my single dose of Reese’s I started taking two doses a day. Once in the morning and once at night for three days. After this second round with 6 times the amount of meds spread over 3 days I confirmed my suspicion and found one pinwirm on my toilet paper. I am absolutely 100% sure what it was by all the images I had seen of them online. It was around a half inch long. After the second round of meds my symptoms were down to around 10% of what they initially were. Before any treatment I was awake about 3 hours a night scratching my anus. It was excruciating itch. The itch was like bad mosquito bites but with what felt like an occasional tiny prick that itched. Almost like I got fiberglass particles in my butt. If not for positive confirmation of seeing one worm on my toilet paper I might have thought I was losing my mind. I’ve read many forums where people say they have the symptoms but medical tests turn up negative and ignorant medical professionals who have not dealt with this or have seen pinworms easily rid of with one dose of meds have no idea how hard they are to eradicate in some people. I can’t say why one person can get rid of them in one dose of meds but another has tried every med and herbal approach on the planet and still struggles with them. The bottom line is those who continue to suffer are not crazy. They are not making up the symptoms and they should not second guess themselves because some ignorant doctor or even parasitic specialist says they don’t have pinworms. I’m going on around three months of first having symptoms and none of my two kids or wife has shown symptoms. After the second round of meds I started trying herbal cures like raw garlic cloves, 8 cloves in past three days with teaspoon of dried Oregeno leaves. I have been on diatomaceous Earth for over a week and did two smoothies with orange and lime peels with 1.5 tablespoons of raw papaya seeds ground up in it. None of this has done much. Symptoms have resided to around 10% of original. I feel less itch but more squirming around my anus now that the itch is less. The itch was masking the squirming at first. I also started powdering my butt crack and anus with diatomaceous earth before bed and after showering in the morning. I have a dedicated tooth brush to brush my anus each morning and night with running water to remove any eggs before putting on the diatomaceous earth. I also boiled down the skins of ten manderine oranges then strained about 1.5 cups of the concoction it produced and chugged it. If all the holistic remedies this probably worked the best since I was symptom free for around 12 hours after but they slowly came back again. I read on one forum that someone explained as we grow older our intestinal walls can grow creases that the worms can hide in to avoid any of the paralyzing meds that are supposed to make them lose hold of your intestinal wall allowing you to pass them. Not sure how much truth there is to this. I personally think that the worms migrate further down your intestinal tract near your anus to escape any meds and harsh environment brought on by herbal remedies. I think this because I feel more squirming in the day now not just night. Parasites are adaptive and nature has been selecting those fittest to survive for millions of years. If you are suffering from symptoms of pinworms but medical professionals haven’t been able to cure you or find proof and think you are crazy don’t listen to them. Trust your instincts. I think I’ll try eating 1.5 cigarettes worth of tobacco next as old military suggestions say to do to treat parasites in the field.

Sally I am sorry to hear what you are going through. It is exactly the same thing I am going through right now. It started with the little one June of 2016. He was doing well with the two doses of Albenza but I just couldn’t shift or get rid of the problem. I started with 2 rounds of albenza which didn’t help at all, then Reese’s medicine, then at least 6 rounds of Combantrin (Canadian version of Reese’s in pill form), and even 2 rounds of stromectin . The problem seem to come back after 10 days post treatment each time. At my wits end and no help from neither my family doc nor an Infectious Disease specialist, I am about to try Mebendazole. Please let us know how you are doing

I’ve got pinworms now–all because my friends 4 year old cousin stuck his hand in my mouth. There’s no other place I could’ve gotten it as children are the most likely carrier. As a 21 year old girl, this is very embarrassing. I can’t believe this. I don’t have poor hygiene, I keep my nails short, this is just irritating. I fully understand your pain

Sorry to hear this. It sounds like this is rare. I will say a prayer for you and your family and I hope you get answers and find relief. In the mean time, take care of yourself. Allow yourself to enjoy the day. I know it’s easier said than done when you are in the middle of this. I did get through it and I hope you will too.

Oh, my. I am so, so sorry.

Do come back and let us all know how it goes.

Does anyone have other alternatives to offer Sally?

Thinking of you … @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

Hi, a very important question, how to treat vaginal pinworms?! Since it is said that medicines work only on intestines?! Please.

Mia,
Just sharing my story: I thought that I had vaginal pinworms, but after seeing my doctor and she took some cultures, to find out I actually had bacteria vaginosis. I also took a pinworm paddle test and found out I did not have pinworms anymore-anywhere! Likely, I gave myself the bacterial infection, as when I found out I had pinworms I was cleaning myself down there often! Which is a no no! And to be honest I was relieved to find out that it was that- and not pinworms! I hope you hear good news! Hang in there, I know this is a trying thing to have. But you will eventually get through it!

Hi, i found out i have pinworms a few days ago by having a weird movement in my anus, and checking and actually seeing it (SO GROSS) but had no itching what so ever. I immediately told my parents and they got medication, i haven’t felt anything since i took the meds 3 days ago. I have been showering almost twice a day washing hands and changing my bed everyday. I barely see any in my stool and if i do it’s dead and not moving.. soooo am i in the clear?? or how long should i wait? and if i never felt any itching does that mean the worms never laid eggs?

Anon,

It’s great that you don’t feel any symptoms and you’re only seeing signs of dead worms.

The worms likely laid eggs. You need to take the second dose of the medicine in two weeks to make sure you’re clear.

Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

Me and my 7 year old daughter have pin worms we have tried everything we keep getting reinfested for 2 years now I don’t know what to do anymore plz help

I have been having the same problems in my family. I have been considering doing the Kalcker protocol but possibly without the CD (chlorine dioxide)…. not sure. I have been looking at the debugyourhealth website, written by a Phd mom (not medical) who has cured her family’s parasite problem. She also references Dr. Yu in the USA. She recommends not going the herbal remedy route as it just aggravates the parasites without killing them. I think the medical community is missing a piece of the parasite puzzle.

Praying for you and your daughter. Have you been referred to a specialist doctor? If not, maybe request this from your regular doctor. 2 years is a long time to be suffering from this. Hang in there, hope you get answers soon.

Hi, how long is the interval period before you notice you get them again each time?!

Hi I’m from Canada and I have pin worms and my Doctore proscribes a medicine for it today but I still keep seeing them when I use the washroom how long does it take for them to go away this is not the first time I have gotten them once when I was little 2 time when I was pregnant and now again it’s been 5 years since i haven’t had them what can I do please help

So this is the 2nd time I’ve had pinworms this year. The first time I was staying at my grandparents and didn’t tell anyone. They went away after a while. So now, I’ve had them for about 3 days and the itching is so bad!!! Non of my family members are showing signs of pinworms and I haven’t told my parents yet. Does anyone have any easy home remedies?? Or tips?

Alyy,

Pinworms are far more common than most people know and are nothing to be embarrassed about. I encourage you to tell your parents. You may need their help to get the medicine you need.

Reese’s Pinworm Medicine can be purchased at the drugstore or follow the link in the article above and buy it online. The treatment is two doses. The second dose is given 2 weeks after the first.

Washing the bedding on the treatment day may help and is often recommended. There’s not a downside to cleaning the bedding on that day, just a little hassle.

I hope that helps.
Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

Hi my name is Kim

Is it to late to do a treatment for the pinworms when you have diarrhea ?Howany treatments will I have to take ?I don’t have insurance to go to the doctor but it’s been going on for about a week Friday I will be able to buy the over the counter meds but I’m scared it’s to late and I may have to go to the hospital,i have no idea I’m scared ,I’m 20 years old and this is the first time I have dogs and cats but they don’t have worms ,I have been eating a lot of pork but it’s never under cooked and it’s cooked for hours before we all eat .I would really love to no if this is not going to keep happening to me that I do the treatment and they will be gone !!!

Just wanted to post here, in case anyone, like myself, was worried you were going to have pinworms forever or you just felt like you couldn’t see the end (depressed, anxious)… it is beatable! You will get through it! My family used over the counter meds, and strict hygiene/ cleaning. Unfortunately, it took me, the poor mom who was doing all the cleaning, the longest to get rid of it. But I did, and you will too!

im going through it right now we took our first dose of meds and it feels like we can feel them back after 8 days (hub and i) the kids seem to have no symptoms at all now! so half the home is done just praying the second dose will get it all! *pray*

If that’s really true, thank you sooo very much for the good news! Pinworns were a very baf experience my family and I endured the last year and suddenly my life turned 360 degrees. I became phobic and am suffering from severe anxiety till today. I constantly wonder if we really got rid of it, constantly wonder if it gets back woukd we be really able to beat it again in case we really did last time!?..thank you

Amanda,

Thanks so much for the encouragement!

@MsGreene
Note: I answer a lot of questions on DrGreene.com, I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, Dr. Greene’s business partner and wife, but I am a not doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

Hi if i just act like the pinworms arent there will the eventually go away and if they will how long will it take im so embarrassed

Lucy,

It’s very unlikely that they will just go away. In fact, it’s much more likely that they will multiply if you just ignore them. But they are pretty easy to treat.

Reese’s Pinworm Medicine can be purchased at the drugstore or follow the link above and buy it online. The treatment is two doses. The second dose is given 2 weeks after the first.

Washing the bedding on the treatment day may help and is often recommended. There’s not a downside to cleaning the bedding on that day, just a little hassle.

I hope that helps.

@MsGreene
Co-founder & Executive Producer DrGreene.com, Mom
Note: I answer a lot of questions on DrGreene.com, but I am not a doctor. I am Dr. Greene’s business partner and wife. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

I’ve had pin worms for about a week now. I can’t sleep, witch affects my working in the morning I’m miserable. I went to the doctor, got my medicen and took the first pill today. I’m supposed to take the second pill in 2 weeks. I just want to know when will it kick in? When will I stop feeling them at night?

I’m 12 I don’t know what to do. I have E.O.Gs tomorrow!

Hi. I have seen these worms once about 5months ago and are just seeing them now again noticing itching and when I drink water my stomach hurts and feels like bad cramps. Is that normal? What should I do?

I fuigered out the 5 month thing,but I still don’t know about the stomach ache caused by water

My name is Cheyenne I am 10 and I have pinworms and it itch like [redacted]. And I am embarrassed to ask my mom to take me to the doctor. So if you have a cure let me know 😥😥😥😥😥😥😥😣😣😣💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩

You need to tell your mom so she can take you to the doctor and so everyone in the house can be treated

Cheyenne,

So sorry you’re going through this. I know the itch is terrible.

You can buy medication at your local drug store, but at 10, you may need your mom’s help. The medication is call Reese’s Pinworm Medicine. You can follow the link above and buy it online, but that requires a credit card, so again, you’ll likely need your mom’s help.

The treatment is two doses. The second dose is given 2 weeks after the first.

Washing the bedding on the treatment day may help and is often recommended. There’s not a downside to cleaning the bedding on that day, just a little hassle.

I hope that helps.

@MsGreene
Co-founder & Executive Producer DrGreene.com, Mom
Note: I answer a lot of questions on DrGreene.com, I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, Dr. Greene’s business partner and wife, but I am not Dr. Greene.

Hi Dr. Green,
Can pinworm eggs remain dormant in the body for a WHOLE year to suddenly appear after it?!

Maria,

This may be a new infection.

Sorry!

Best, @MsGreene
Note: I answer a lot of questions on DrGreene.com, I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, Dr. Greene’s business partner and wife, but I am a not doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

Hi I’m Mary, I’m a 30 year old female and I have pinworm. I had it several times as a child and am very aware of that particular itch. I felt it about six weeks ago and consulted my GP. She preformed a visual inspection of my anus and said she could see “lots of white things around the anus”. I was prescribed Albenza (two tablets each time two weeks apart) and the crazy night time itch went away in a few days. The bed was washed several times and house fully scrubbed down those first few days. I repeated the does after two weeks as told. Then on the fifth week after the first dose I notice the itch was back, called my GP and she gave me the same prescription and directions. It’s a few days after week six now and the last week and few days I have bathe everyday, been super careful with hand washing, washed the bedding everyday, vacuuming almost everyday (sofa included), cleaned the toilet everyday, short nails, washed our dog, bleaching everything like mad, my boyfriend who shares the house has also been medicated with the OTC stuff but has no symptoms. I’m becoming very depressed about this as I feel disgusting and won’t have people over to my house in fear they will get it. Is it even possible to have the itch after only a week and two days after taking a dose? I never even hear of adults getting this.

Hi there, I have a question about Ovex and how effective it is(?) I discovered I had pinworms about a month ago, and obviously I panicked as telling my parents was then too embarrassing to think about. So I read up and due to a few convincing sites decided that garlic was the way forward. And so for the next week I cut up many cloves and ate/ swallowed them with water (disgusting, by the way). After about 6 days my symptoms disappeared, but just over a week ago they came back again (definitely there as I caught a few). I tried the garlic trick for a the next few days but it didn’t work, and as I was losing sleep I resolved to tell my mum. Anyway she bought an Ovex tablet which I took on Wednesday afternoon (it is now Saturday night) and every night since then I’ve still had pinworms?!! I’ve been catching a few and some appear during the day time. I figured this would happen for a day or 2 as the Ovex would need time to work but now I’m panicking again? Should take another or is there another treatment that is more effective? And is this normal? Thanks

How long do you continue to feel symptoms after taking an over the counter pinworm medication such as reeses pinworms medicine? Also my family of 3, including a toddler are on our 3rd dose. I am fearful my family will never rid this thing as my toddler puts everything in his mouth. We are cleaning everything but paying special attention to hand washing after bathrooming, diapering, and before meals. What percentage of people usually get rid of pinworms? And how long does it usually take? It’s really effectingredients our lives and I am becoming depressed and anxious.

Hi Tracy, I’m a mom of two boys. I’ve suffered from pinworms a year ago. I would love to share some details with you, I’ve been there at it. Depressed and anxious and all.

Tracy,

I’m so sorry for what you’re going through. This sounds miserable.

Here’s some more information from Dr. Greene that might be helpful:

“The life cycle of a pinworm is 4 to 6 weeks. Without treatment, infestation will continue as long as fresh eggs are being swallowed, unless a person develops immunity to pinworms, which is unusual before age 15…Where pinworms are a constant problem, treating every 3 months may help to prevent re-infestation.”

I hope that’s helpful. @MsGreene
Co-founder & Executive Producer DrGreene.com, Mom
Note: I answer a lot of questions on DrGreene.com, I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, Dr. Greene’s business partner, but I am a not doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

so I got piworms when I was like 7 for the first time and we didn’t figure out what it was till I was 9 they would come and go every few months and now I’m 13 and this is still happening I take the medication and it works but then they just come back. I read this article saying that when you get them they keep coming back and never go but a lot of people thought it was fake idk if it is I just want them to go and never come back.

My 4yr old daughter who has pinworms. Visible in her stools they come outwith 6-8 worms attached. I have treated her twice with Combantrin chocolate squares but still getting live worms on her stools. 10 day gap between treatments.
7 days after her 2nd treatment still seeing live worms.
I’ve washed all her bedding and thoroughly cleaned. Also have 3 other children none of them seem to be affected.

I commented below as a reply.
But I have 4 children. One of the four has battled pin worms we assume from exposure to a farm. She is 9 yrs old. Very healthy. And happy. About a year or so ago she brought to my attention she felt crawling in her anal area. So I looked on the toilet paper and found pin worms. To my disgust, never have dealt with them, I made a dr app I was told it’s pin worms and to get a OTC med. so I followed his advice. Treated once and a following dose in two weeks. So all seemed well. Then about a month ago if that, she tells me they are back and now she feels them in her vagina. I ask to see. She was embarrassed. Took her to pediatrician and he told me she had a possible virus and looked into a bladder infection. Frustrated I treated her again. Knowing they where back. One dose and one two weeks later. Maybe they never left? So the other day she complains feeling them again. ??? Now what ??? And she is a bed wetter so she gets fresh different bedding that rotates every few days when she has a accident. Or routinely once to twice a week. Along with my other children and my husbands and my bedding. (Gets washed 1-2 a week) we all suffer from a list of allergies so constant Clorox wipes are used along side steam cleaning and routine cleaning as normal. What do I do? How serious can this become and what can I do for her??? My heart breaks!!! There are 6 of us in the home none but her have ever had them.

Hi I am 15 years old boy and I seem to have pinworm. I am not interested in going to a doctor as it is quite embarrassing. I was wondering what is the best way to properly get rid of them. They are literally ruining my life. Please reply as soon as possible thanks.

Gerard,

Reese’s Pinworm Medicine can be purchased at the drugstore or follow the link above and buy it online. The treatment is two doses. The second dose is given 2 weeks after the first.

Washing the bedding on the treatment day may help and is often recommended. There’s not a downside to cleaning the bedding on that day, just a little hassle.

I hope that helps.

@MsGreene

So my 9 year old son has pinworms we found out on Saturday night today is Monday and I had to wait until today to get the treatment from Walmart. How long does the treatment take to work and when will he be able to sleep conformable again I feel so bad for him we all have to get treatment I have 3 other kids what’s the best way to make sure they don’t come back. I’m not even sure how he got them im freaking out please help

Hi Amanda,

Pinworms are very common in children. Although they are very unpleasant, there’s no need to freak out, just continue treatment and be sure to thoroughly clean.

Dr. Greene has a complete article for you — Pinworms: A-to-Z Guide from Diagnosis to Treatment to Prevention.

Best,
@MsGreene

Hi, I’m Emma and tonight I found out I had pinworms- I am 12 years old turning 13 and AND the worms are around 1mm long. Am I in the early stages of pinworms? How do I tell my mum? What can I do about it? Someone help me because I’m really scared and disgusted and I’m scared to tell my mum.. please help

Hi Emma,

I know it seems really yucky, but you really need to understand that’s pinworms are super common and your mum won’t freak out.

Simply tell your her symptoms and that you think you have pinworms, and ask for her help.

There’s over the counter treatment available at drug stores. If you have a 24 hour drug store where you live, you can even get medicine tonight. It’s that easy.

Hope that helps,
@MsGreene