It’s estimated that about 40 million people in North America have pinworms —and because they spread easily and are commonly found in young children, your kiddo might get them one day. Jamie Kondis, MD, a Washington University pediatrician at St. Louis Children’s Hospital, talks about four important pieces of information regarding pinworms:

  • Pinworms do not pose serious health risks. The main issue they cause is itching in the anal area.
  • If you think your child has pinworms, contact your pediatrician for help. They may want to check for other causes of itching, to rule them out.
  • There are two ways to check for pinworms. First, try looking for small gray worms around your child’s anal area while they sleep at night. The other method is the “Scotch tape” test. Place a piece of tape around the anal area to trap the pinworms on the tape. This is the best way to confirm their presence.
  • Pinworms are easily treated with an oral medication. Your doctor will likely recommend that all family members take the medication because you can have pinworms without symptoms. Wash all linens and clothing in hot water; this helps eliminate pinworm eggs.

Remember, if you think your child has pinworms, contact their pediatrician. Need help finding a pediatrician? We are here to help! Learn more about what factors to consider when choosing a pediatrician


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