Wondering if Bleach can be used to Kill and Get rid of Scabies? Is it effective to be used on surfaces or even on your skin?
In this guide you will learn:
- If Bleach can kill scabies & How effective is it,
- How to use bleach to kill scabies,
- How to Take a Bleach Bath for Scabies,
- How to Clean your house of Scabies with bleach.
Scabies are microscopic little mites that can cause an itchy rash when they come in contact with human skin.
Known by their formal title as sarcoptes scabiei, these small arachnids actually dig their way into the skin.
Once inside, they go ahead and lay eggs. This process leads to skin irritation that can turn into blisters or sores depending on how intensely the area is scratched.
The Most Common Symptoms are rashes on arms with tiny blisters. You might also feel extremely itchy, especially at night.
Does Bleach Kill Scabies?
Bleach will absolutely kill scabies and it can be a good method to get rid of scabies.
However, because it is such a strong chemical, it is recommended that you only use bleach as a method to rid clothes and other items of the mites.
These particular mites have a long life of 1-2 months when they are living in a person’s skin. Outside of human contact, they can only survive for a few days.
If scabies have spread to your bed sheets or clothes, a combination of bleach and hot water will kill them.
If you are wondering if Bleach will kill Scabies on the Skin…
Again, yes, bleach can kill scabies on skin quite effectively.
If you are looking for relief from itchiness however, you will want to look elsewhere.
Bleach will kill the scabies but it may also have harmful effects on your skin.
How Does Bleach Kill Scabies?
Bleach is a solution of sodium hypochlorite and is effective in fighting bacteria by dissolving protein structures.
This results in a mass of denatured proteins, which essentially means that these proteins are no longer alive.
Bleach works similarly to kill scabies.
The mites’ bodies absorb the acid, the protein is broken down and they die.
How to Take a Bleach Bath for Scabies
A bleach bath is exactly what it sounds like. It is a mixture of water and bleach which you create in a bathtub.
Because bleach is a powerful chemical agent, it is advised to dilute the bleach heavily before sitting in the tub.
Assuming you have an average sized bathtub that can hold about 40 gallons of water, you want to add about ¼ cup of liquid bleach.
It is not recommended that you spend a large amount of time soaking in this mixture.
Keep it short, usually under ten minutes at a time.
Additionally, you do not want to exceed a ½ cup of bleach in a bathtub full of water.
This is the recommended maximum amount of bleach to add to a bleach bath.
Higher levels of bleach can result in harm to your skin, lungs, or eyes.
Some people may choose to soak their whole bodies if they have a larger infestation of mites.
Others may choose just to submerge the body part that is irritated, such as the arm or hand.
Bleach Bath for Scabies – How Effective & What to Consider?
If you are experiencing an infestation of scabies on your body, you’re likely desperate to rid yourself of these creatures.
You may have heard that bleach baths are an effective way to do just that. Here’s what you need to know before you mix up one of these baths for yourself.
Always check the label of the bleach that you are using if you are going to take a bath with it.
Because bleach in larger amounts can be harmful to humans, you do not want to take any risks.
Look for common household bleach that is about 6-8% sodium hypochlorite. If it has more than that, it shouldn’t be used for a bleach bath.
Never use more than a ½ cup of bleach per full tub of water, especially if it is approaching the 8% sodium hypochlorite range.
While taking a bleach bath will be effective in killing scabies, there are many other methods to rid yourself of scabies that are doctor recommended.
The CDC suggests using scabicides, or products that are specifically created to kill mites as well as the eggs that they lay.
These products will only be available by prescription.
While this might be inconvenient, it is important to remember that these products are the only ones that have gone through testing and are approved for human use.
If you decide to reach for a prescription product, follow the instructions very carefully.
If you do so, your symptoms should be cleared up in about 2-4 weeks.
Potential Adverse Effects of Bleach Bath
Firstly, household bleach, or sodium hypochlorite, is an intense chemical.
Think about the ways that we use it—to kill germs on kitchen surfaces, to make our clothes whiter, to sanitize dirty areas.
Those are all pretty powerful jobs for one substance to be responsible for.
When taking a bleach bath, it is possible for accidents or missteps to occur. If you are filling up the bath, for example, and you happen to splash some bleach into your eye, you will need to rinse it out with water immediately.
Bleach in the eyes can cause stinging and burning and may even result in a decrease or loss of vision.
If you pour too much household bleach into the bath (anything over the ½ cup maximum), you may experience damage to your skin.
An overload of bleach making contact with your skin can result in a bleach burn, which will show up as red welts.
You may also be allergic to large amounts of bleach without knowing it.
Because we don’t touch bleach with our skin when we are using it for cleaning or other activities, we might not show any symptoms of allergy.
However, using it directly on your skin can expose or bring about severe allergic reactions in some individuals.
Thinking about using bleach wipes for scabies?
Because it is best to use diluted bleach, bleach wipes are not recommended as a treatment for our bodies for scabies.
Does Bleach Kill Scabies Eggs?
Bleach will kill scabies effectively when diluted and used on the skin, or when used in conjunction with hot water when washing clothes or sheets.
Bleach-based cleaning products will also work to kill mites on surfaces.
However, the best way to ensure that you rid yourself of scabies and their eggs is to use a doctor prescribed scabicide.
There are many different options when it comes to scabicides, but one of the most commonly used is permethrin cream.
This cream is FDA approved and can be used on anyone older than two months.
This product is proven to kill not only mites, but eggs as well and will have your infection cleared in about two weeks.
Can Bleach Kill Scabies On Surfaces?
Yes, bleach can kill scabies on surfaces.
These mites thrive on human skin, lasting only about two days on their own.
Because they multiply so quickly on skin, however, it means that new eggs are being laid at a fast rate and can rub off on frequently touched surfaces.
Cleaning counters and surfaces with bleach will help eliminate the mites.
Additionally, bedsheets and pillowcases should be washed often with hot water to kill the mites.
Bleach can help to kill scabies on clothes quite effectively.
If you don’t want to use bleach on your colored clothing, you can also just machine wash in hot water and then dry on the hottest setting.
Alternatively, you may also bring your clothes to the dry cleaners. The heating process will kill any mites on your clothing.
You may want to notify the dry cleaners of the possibilities of scabies so that they can take proper precautions to keep them contained.
Similar to clothes and bedsheets, scabies mites will only be able to survive on a mattress for 2-3 days.
That being said, bleach is not the easiest way to clean your mattress.
However, if needed, bleach can be used to get rid of scabies from mattresses.
Because a mattress is difficult to wash properly, the fumes from the bleach will likely stay.
The last thing you want is to be inhaling chemicals each night when you sleep.
To avoid this, you can try vacuuming your mattress. Follow this by using a good steam cleaner on it. Make sure that it is at a minimum temperature of 130 degrees Fahrenheit.
Bleach alone will not be the most effective way to rid your furniture of any scabies depending on the type of furniture that you want to clean.
On hard surfaces such as tables, bleach can be great for killing scabies.
On Soft surfaces such as the coach, it might be difficult to apply the bleach and it might even damage your furniture.
Vacuuming any furniture that can be vacuumed will be a good starting point.
After you vacuum and dispose of your bags outside the home, you can also try washing your furniture with hot water and soap.
Follow this with a strong disinfectant spray.
If possible, removing yourself from a scabies-infested area will help to rid it of the mites.
Because they cannot live without human contact for long, keeping away from your home for at least three days should result in the death of the mites.
How Long does it take Bleach to Kill Scabies?
If you are wondering if bleach will kill scabies on contact, then No, Bleach will take up to two hours to kill mites.
To be on the safe side, you will want to wait upwards of a day or two to make sure all the bugs are gone.
Furthermore, bleach takes a while to dry.
It is inadvisable to remain in an enclosed area that has been treated with large amounts of bleach.
Keeping your distance until every surface is dry to the touch will help ensure that the mites are gone and your health is kept up.
Does Swimming In Chlorine Water Kills Scabies?
No, swimming in a pool with chlorine water will not kill scabies.
While it is very unlikely that scabies will spread in a pool, it is not advised to use a pool as a treatment for scabies.
The amount of chlorine in a pool is much less than chemical bleach and will not have the same effect on the mites. Sticking to prescription solutions to rid your body of scabies is the recommended path to take.
So can scabies survive in chlorine? Yes, swimming in chlorinated water will not cure your scabies infestation. While they may not multiply while in chlorine, they will not all be killed either.
Is It Worth To Kill Scabies With Bleach?
Determining whether it is worth it to use bleach to kill your scabies is up to you.
As per the CDC recommendations, prescription treatments should always be used on the body whenever possible.
If you are looking to rid your home or belongings of scabies, then reaching for a disinfectant like household bleach can certainly help in this process.
It is best to use it as part of a larger treatment process rather than relying on it to do all the work.
The bottom line is that scabies are highly contagious pests that will cause heavy irritation on the skin.
While bleach is certainly an option to help you rid yourself of scabies, always be careful.
At the end of the day it is still a chemical that can cause harm to your body and EXTREME Caution should be Taken!